Taking the advice of my friend Rafe Colburn, last night I signed up with eMusic.com. I was not sure about it, since I couldn’t view their catalog before signing up, but since they offered a no-strings-attached trial (I scrutinized the entire agreement), I decided to give it a try. Last night, I ended up downloading ALL of my trial songs (for the curious, I downloaded songs from Richard Shindell and They Might Be Giants) and converting to a subscription. I was impressed with their selection, their price and the fact that the MP3s aren’t encumbered by DRM. The price and lack of DRM beats iTunes hands down.
As for their selection, it’s not as extensive as iTunes, but it fits my music tastes perfectly. This is from eMusic’s FAQ about their music selection:
a) Already buy or download about one CD per month?
b) Listen to college radio or other non-profits? (Like KEXP or WFMU?)
c) Read music criticism? (Like Pitchfork, NYTimes, or Salon.com?)
d) Already troll the ‘net for legitimate free Mp3s? (At Epitonic, BetterPropaganda, Insound?)
e) Go to three or four live performances a year?
f) Ever listen to stuff that is not pop, rock, or hip-hop?
If you answered yes to at least one or two of these questions, eMusic is probably for you. You’ll be able to find plenty of stuff to listen to. Start by *browsing* rather than searching and check out what’s really here. Also, you can ask on these message boards and you’ll get a lot of recommendations, fast. And, of course, even if you aren’t a hardcore music addict yet, eMusic is a great way to become one. You’ve been warned.