A Poor Defense
Many, but not all, of the posts I will get around to uploading are available on CD. If all of the ones I've posted are, I haven't really noticed. The fact is, I do not own a single legitimate Sun Ra album.
There is no possible way I could come to the appreciation I have of Sun Ra if I spent money. First and foremost, I have seen 2 Sun Ra albums in my hometown, and the CD of Sun Ra covers at the largest community library. I found a great deal of Sun Ra when I went to Portland, but the minimum price was $25. And that was for 40 minutes of material.
I do not own a credit card so I do not buy anything online.
This comes down the importance I place of aesthetic appreciation. Rapidshare, the piece of crap it can be, allows for a fairly reliable (as far as staying available) way to increase the aesthetic appreciation to a certain audience.
I am also crazy. This means that I believe everyone thinks like me. In my opinion, just because I have the digital copy of a great album does not influence the decision to buy that album. In recent years, there have only been 2 CDs that I bought NEW (and still at a discounted retail price) that I did not have on my computer. On the other hand, I've bought over a dozen used CDs just this year at what I deemed a reasonable price ($1 apiece for numerous Hovhaness symphonies, some Arvo Part, Koyanisqatsi soundtrack, Arnold Bax, Walton, etc.).
Independent record labels are going about this in what I see as the wrong way. If they had a website and offered digital music at $5-7 an album and then Print-On-Demand CDs for $10, there'd be a possibility of me buying a record or two. It just so happens that whatever company bought the CRI record label is offering print on demand CDs for $10 when you buy 10, no shipping and handling--something I plan on doing when I get a real job and have a credit card.
I can go out and buy a DVD 2001 A Space Odyssey for $7 NEW! If I wanted to collect the soundtrack for that movie on outside sources (ie, not buying the soundtrack, but buying a Ligeti album and a Straus CD...), it would be at least 4 if not 6 times that amount.
I am a poor individual and companies will not get my money unless I think they are reasonably priced. I actually think that $7 is a very reasonable price for almost any Stanley Kubrick film. I think $7 is a very reasonable price for a lot of the music I listen to. When I have the income to buy new music, it is $7 per disc (Naxos, or it averages out over the number of discs I buy--like the Hindemith Conducts Hindemith set).
So yes. I will continue to post Sun Ra's music for people like me. If you have the money to spend on this material, you really don't need me to tell you to buy it. That is, if you think like me.
For you Americans, encourage your public libraries--community and colleges--to buy Sun Ra albums for their collection. I don't know if other countries allow the public to make suggestions, but I'm sure that you can across the States.