richardrj wrote:there are still arguments against fan taping and not-for-profit sharing. The first of these is that if a fan makes a live recording available for free and an official live album is later released, fewer people will then go out and buy the album, thereby depriving the artist of revenue.
Fan made recordings are (for the most part) substandard in quality,in comparison to official releases.Serious fans buy the offical release regardless.It's like the hardcore fans who buy "greatest hits" and "best of" releases time and time again...because they want the complete collection.Apart from the serious fans,it tends to be the curious who check out fan recorded shows,if that person is swayed to buy an official release as a result,I don't think Leonard or any other artists is going to refuse that sale.The issue swings both ways.
Then there is what you might call the philosophical argument, made most strongly by Robert Fripp. He will tell you that he can sense when a show is being taped as he performs and that it throws him psychically off balance.
That's rather unfortunate for Robert Fripp,he must have spent much of his live career "off balance",there is hardly any show that is not in some way documented unofficially.
He says the very act of taping a show is damaging and disruptive, not only to him but also to the rest of the audience.
I can see his point in that,but others see its value.Some bands are now reaching out to fans for rare footage to fill in the gaps of their career from a historical perspective.
He also believes that a live performance should only be allowed to exist live and in real time for the people in the room, not in any form of simulacrum.
That's a very interesting point of view,and certainly one to consider.
I would disagree wholeheartedly though.
I saw a documentary in the theatre last year (which I recently purchased) about the American Hardcore scene of the early 80's.They were able to create an accurate archive of events from that era in modern music...thanks to the fans who were filming the shows without permission.
The bands were blown away and impressed with some of the footage that was uncovered.
American rock and roll stripped to the bare bones...on celluloid,forever.Thank God I say.
Moreso,when discussing it from the perspective of live performances being documented from the audience..fan filmed footage has captured important moments that would have otherwise been left to the written word to describe.The on stage murder of Dimebag Darrel from Pantera comes to mind.Maybe not the cup of tea of music fans in these parts,but the audience filmed footage captured the moment in music history where the boundaries came down and the life of a musician was taken while performing on stage.That chasm of false security while on stage has closed,there is a real danger to a live performance and it has been documented for the archives.
I'm thankful for the "Zapruders" of modern music.
All of this thinking only applies to unauthorised taping (he feels the same way about photography, even without flash). If the artist has given consent for the performance to be taped, then that is OK. For Fripp, the key point is that unauthorised taping and photography is a violation.
No question it's a violation.I find it interesting though,that many artists later seek these violations out...especially when putting together "official" box cd sets and dvd collections...the Doors being one (of many) examples.
I know two people who today sought out and purchased tickets to see Leonard Cohen in Toronto.They did so because I showed them the absolutely brilliant (unofficial,fan filmed) clip of Leonard performing Hallelujah in Fredericton,(a concert in which Mr. Cohen didn't seem to be thrown off balance by the cameras and "sense of being filmed").
These people went to Ticketmaster and actually found single seats for sale.
Seats that might have otherwise gone unnoticed and unsold,save for that unnofficial footage on Youtube.I wonder if Mr. Cohen has a problem accepting their hard earned money because of the manner in which they were swayed to attend his concert?
I find it interesting that Leonard's official website is hosting photos that were unofficially taken,in violation
..by an audience member.