Record Store Day

Before the existence of the Internet, or digital music, your local record store was the one place to find a copy of your favorite album. Waiting for the new big album to come out and then going to the store to actually buy a physical copy was a big deal, and always very exciting. You couldn’t turn on your computer and download or stream the music you liked. You’d have to make sure you had enough money, walk, or drive up to the store (or ride a bike) and purchase the piece of music you wanted. For many, record store day was a far more fun and fulfilling way to purchase music, although not convenient or instantaneous.

The ease of downloading music to your MP3 player with the click of a button, unfortunately results in more, and more, record stores closing up shop every year. You can always buy CD’s at places such as WalMart or Target. Most of the time, the stores only carry popular albums compared to actual record stores. Your choices are pretty limited. Of course, you can’t deny that digital music is a pretty cool thing and makes finding specific albums a lot easier. However, digital music has destroyed the profits of record stores around the world. Depending on where you live, locating a record store is gradually becoming harder and harder.

In 2008, a holiday for people who truly appreciate music enough to go out and buy the physical copy was started. The third Saturday of April every year is known as “Record Store Day.” Every year, thousands of music fans flock to record stores in April to purchase their favorite music on CD, Cassette tape, or Vinyl. Music fans hope the money they spend can help keep their local record stores open. The third Saturday of April has become a day loved by customers, and store owners.

The first record store day was kicked off by Metallica, who were that year’s “unofficial ambassadors.” Every year a different musical act plays the role of ambassador for record store day. Another really, cool aspect of record store day is every year there are quite a few “special releases” specifically for record store day. Even if you’re an extensive collector of music and there’s nothing else for you to buy, come record store day there will be a lot of material you don’t own on the shelves. Not only are there special releases, there’s special appearances where musicians and bands of all types show up at different stores around the country to sign autographs, give out free merchandise, and maybe perform live.

Now, April has arrived and record store day is right around the corner. This year record store day falls on the 20th. Instead of spending your money on digital music, why not take a trip to the nearest record store? Support not only the musicians you love but the store owners who struggle every day to provide you with the music.

Festival Season

Everyone loves summer, the warm weather, good vibes, beaches, and bonfires. For music fans, summer has added meaning. The highlight of summer months, one word—festivals. Festivals are huge gatherings where thousands of people spend the day, or sometimes multiple days, surrounded by music, other entertainment, friends, and fun. Groups of friends save up to purchase tickets (unless it’s free, everyone’s favorite price) hop in a car, and drive to their festival of choice, which is sometimes across country.

Since Woodstock took place, which is undoubtedly the most renowned festival of all time, music festivals have increased every year. Regardless of your taste in music, come summer, there’s bound to be a music festival for you. The list is endless. Summer is prime time for musicians from all over the world to go on tour, and it is THE season to see your favorite musical acts perform live in an environment unlike any other.

A big aspect of festivals is camping. Depending on the area, people bring tents or RV’s, and set up in the camping area. People may stay the full length of a festival, falling asleep to music and waking up to more. To some festival goers camping is a necessity; especially, when the festival is far away. These events take place in different venues but mostly outdoors in areas large enough for people to gather, camp, and enjoy the performances.

If you want to attend a music festival this summer there’s a wide variety to choose from. Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza are both great festivals that offer many popular musical acts; including, acts that have been around a while and recent ones. If your interest lies mainly in electronic music there are a lot of choices. You might want to check out festivals such as Electric Forest, Movement: Detroit Electronic, North Coast Music Festival, or Electric Zoo. While naming all of the festivals coming up this summer is an impossible feat those mentioned are great places to start. A quick, Internet search gives you many results if you’re looking for something specific, or closer to your area.

Overall, summer is a wonderful time of the year for multiple reasons. Regardless of your particular reasons for enjoying the warmer months, summer 2013 should be one to remember, for all the right reasons. Music lovers around the world will attend festivals to catch their favorite acts live on stage, and with the number of festivals, and performers growing every year, this time is exciting for live music fans. So purchase your tickets, get a group of friends together, and pack your sleeping bags because it’s time for festival season.

Is The View On Government Changing

Is The View On Government Changing?

Over the past decade, a lot of big things happened throughout America rubbing a lot of people the wrong way. The general consensus of most of the country may still be that the Government is a positive force; however, everyday more people are starting to have a change of heart regarding those in power. From the “Occupy” movement, to the legalization of marijuana in multiple states, it’s evident that the old values American society once held so dear are starting to crumble; especially among the country’s youth.

From countless wars and military interventions, an economy that’s falling apart, and a serious breach in our constitutional rights, the trust between the United States Government and its citizens is starting to disappear. For example, the recent actions of whistleblower Edward Snowden, a former employee for the NSA (The National Security Agency). He leaked information to the public showing how the NSA spied on citizens all around the country, and even the world; through their phones, computers, and other communication mediums.

Why in a country supposedly founded on freedom, and so dedicated to the rights of its citizens, do people have to worry about their every word being monitored and kept in a database in a warehouse somewhere? This type of thing doesn’t sound uncommon in fascist countries, but in a nation so focused on freedom, and democracy, why is this taking place?

The people that are really becoming concerned with the current state of the US are the youth. They’ve been promised that if they work hard in school, go to college, and do their best, they’ll be able to secure a career and live comfortably, “The American Dream.” However, what keeps happening is people get huge loans to pay for their college tuition, only to be unable to find a job, and end up stuck in debt with no real solution as to how to pay it off. Those who join the military are in a similar boat, but one that’s even sadder.

Those in the military join under the guise of defending their country, and its peoples’ freedom, with promises of a secure future, only to return with mental, and sometimes physical scars, and a lot of times end up having to work a dead end job to make ends meet. Most of the time it seems as if the things they were putting their lives on the line for, didn’t seem to make as much sense as they initially believed.

The climate of the country, and the world at large is rapidly changing. Whatever the changes mean, it’s obvious changes are necessary. Increasingly, people in the U.S. are becoming more frustrated with the way things are going. Our view on those in government power is changing.

What is The Future Of Drugs

What is The Future Of Drugs

For as long as people have been around, so have drugs. No matter how far back you look into history, drugs have always seemed to be prevalent. Over time, there have been a lot of changes in how people view drug use, and societies opinions on drugs constantly seem to change every year. More recently the issue of decriminalization and legalization seems to have become a major concern for many people.

With both sides passionate about their beliefs, and refusing to compromise, what is the future of drugs in the U. S.? In the 1980’s the “War On Drugs” became a big deal. Punishment for drug possession, use, and distribution became far more severe, with highly addictive drugs such as cocaine and heroin on the rise the public view of drugs seemed to have been at an all time low. Albeit, there were many reasons for this, but the question to ask still is, what is the right way to handle drugs in America?

Time has shown that a zero tolerance attitude isn’t always the best way to go. Far more people are incarcerated for drug use now than in the past, and drug use hasn’t really gone down. In the end, we are left with over populated prisons, broken homes, and a lot more tax dollars going towards a war that is seemingly unsuccessful. There are a lot of ways to look at the situation, and a lot of people with very strong opinions on both sides. More people are pushing for legalization every day, and the public appears to be more accepting of drugs, and aware of the problems created by the war on drugs.

What is the future of drugs? If there are changes in the laws, and society’s view on drugs, will the changes happen in our lifetime?

Anarchism

What is Anarchism?

Anarchism is a term that has been dragged through the mud by the media for decades. When most people think of anarchists, they think of people dressed in all black smashing store windows and people who write on walls. There may be some people who call themselves anarchists that do these things, but there is a lot more to anarchism than meets the eye.

A general belief held by Anarchists is the desire to exist in a society without a power structure. A society, where people have full control of their lives and do not have to worry about authority figures interfering. There are a lot of varying opinions on the topic, but one thing people tend to miss, anarchism isn’t that straightforward. For everybody who adapts to this ideology, there are hundreds of schools of thought contained within anarchism. Further, many anarchists disagree with others based on how we should go about existing without a state.

For hundreds of years anarchists, also known as “anti statists” or “voluntaryists” have existed in all corners of the world. Some may say a world without governments seems dangerous and absurd, but there is a lot of evidence on the other side of the fence to dispute this claim. Although governments do create measures to prevent crime, and promote peace, a lot of these institutions have proven to have little effect. In addition, there are more laws and stricter punishments now than ever before, but crime rates seem to remain steady, and in some cases are on the rise.

There’s no real way to say what would happen if people existed without a power structure. However, as a species, which is the product of millions of years of refinement we can argue that, at this point, we don’t need to be told how to live our lifes. No matter how you may look at Anarchism, it is not what the news may describe. You will find far more depth to this ideology than most people are aware of, and it goes far beyond the idea of simply getting rid of the government.

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