A few weeks ago I created a new page for sheet music. Last week I had a comment asking for me to post up the sheet music for I Giorni. Sorry ‘Gr’ but no can do. The sheets I’ve so far put up are for Londonderry Air which is an old arrangement of a traditional tune. So even if the actual arrangement was copyrightable (which I’m not so sure), being published over 80 years ago it is well out of it now.
I Giorni however was only written in 2001 Ludovico Einaudi makes his living from his music. I’m not sure what his royalties are for the sheet music book sales, but if he’s written it why shouldn’t he get paid for it? There’s a lot of talk in the media about artists not being able to make a living from their music. In the world of freely available music and a generation of young people used to being able to download whatever they want for free. It is said that performing live is the only way for artists to be able to make any money from their music.
The problem isn’t just confined to the music world; most creative industries are saying they are suffering. I am on twitter and have ended up following quite a few gardeners, garden bloggers and garden writers. A few weeks ago there was talk by a number of writers who were being asked to write or to present a talk for free. It seems to be more common, that writing is undervalued. There was even a shocking recent case of science writer who declined a request to provide free content to one website who was called a whore, for suggesting that she should be paid for her writing. See the full email exchange here.
I was chatting with my music teacher about music downloads last week at my lesson. I’m learning Clair de Lune at the moment and am having a tricky time with some of the timings. She recommended that I listen to it over and over again. I was telling her how I’ve downloaded a good version of it from youtube. You can use the site youtube-mp3 to download audio from a youtube video. She was asking about the legality of it. I figure that so long as you only do it from videos where the person who posted it up holds the copyright for it, (such as if they have posted up a video of them playing), then this seems to me morally and legally OK. I’m not depriving the original artist of an income, nor am I distributing it myself for personal gain. Of course there’s nothing stopping someone uploading a brand new tune, to a video, and then someone else downloading the audio to save themselves buying the track. But the audio quality is not going to be great. Anyway this is not my bag. I have a work colleague who thinks nothing of downloading the the latest movies as soon as they are released from dodgy sites. It’s never occurred to me do this. It just sits wrong with me. I wonder what the rest of you think about this? Am I being too prudish?