New Dylan disc only available at Starbucks...

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Who Shot Sam?
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New Dylan disc only available at Starbucks...

Postby Who Shot Sam? » Wed Jun 29, 2005 12:10 pm

I don't like this at all. First the Victoria's Secret ads and now this? Come on Bob!

Dylan Brews Up Starbucks Deal
By Charlie Amter

Bob Dylan must have a weak spot for coffeehouses.

The folk-rock icon, who got his start plying tunes in Greenwich Village cafes, has become the latest artist to sign a deal with Starbucks for exclusive distribution rights to his new album - which, coincidentally, features some of those same songs he introduced to the boho, espresso-sipping crowds back in the day.

Bob Dylan: Live at the Gaslight 1962 collects songs recorded at Gotham's famed Gaslight Cafe, including early versions of the classics "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall" and "Don't Think Twice, It's Alright," and goes on sale Aug. 30 at Starbucks' 4,600 outlets in the U.S. and Canada for $13.95. The coffee giant will have exclusive rights to the Dylan disc for 18 months before the disc is available at regular retailers - the longest such window that Starbucks has secured yet.

Some Dylan faithful might raise their eyebrows at the former counterculture champion striking a deal with an entity like Starbucks -then again, Dylan's credibility took a hit when he sold a song last year for a Victoria's Secret lingerie commercial and again recently when he agreed to play Amazon.com's 10th anniversary party with fellow Starbucks fave Norah Jones on July 16.

But the move is certain to anger some traditional music sellers, who are already struggling to survive in an age when many music fans prefer to buy music from online outlets like Amazon.com, get direct digital downloads from sites like Apple's iTunes.com or just swap pirated music via file-sharing sites like Grokster and Morpheus.

Earlier this month, HMV pulled Alanis Morissette's albums from its stores in Canada in retaliation for the "Ironic" singer's decision to make her latest disc, acoustic edition of Jagged Little Pill, exclusively available at Starbucks outlets for the first six weeks of its release.

But for certain artists like Dylan and Morissette, the Seattle-based coffee giant offers a demographically desirable alternative to selling discs via traditional music channels. The caffeine-enabling chain proved it had what it takes to move a substantial amount of CDs when it became the largest single seller of Ray Charles' multiplatinum, Grammy-winning Genius Loves Company; Starbucks accounted for 775,000 copies, or 26 percent, of the disc's total sales last year. In April, Starbucks' Hear Music label teamed up with Warners' Lava Records to launch a new all-female group called Antigone Rising.

Starbucks selectively chooses releases it thinks will gel with its well-heeled customers, then seeks to strike exclusive, sometimes cobranded, deals with record companies to offer customers something unique.

Things don't always go swimmingly, however. In May, the chain failed to lock up a deal to sell Bruce Springsteen's new Devils & Dust--reportedly because the Boss didn't want to slap the Starbucks mermaid logo on his album cover.

Even though the new Dylan disc won't be available outside Starbucks for the next year and a half, fans can still get their fix without having to deal with a green-aproned barrista.

Columbia Records announced Tuesday that No Direction Home: The Soundtrack, the seventh installment in Dylan's Bootleg Series, will be available in regular record stores on Aug. 30. The two-disc set of rare and unreleased material from 1961-66 will also serve as the soundtrack to Bruce Springsteen's PBS documentary on Dylan, No Direction Home. The two-part bio will air in late September.
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Postby El Vez » Wed Jun 29, 2005 12:19 pm

I don't really have a problem with this. Major retailers are less and less likely to promote a baby boomer act (albeit one who is still an A-list draw) like Dylan and the success of Ray Charles' Genius Loves Company has kind of turned Starbucks into a specialty boutique for artists like Dylan, Charles and Joni Mitchell who get plenty of lip service from the industry but are allotted roughly the same promotional budget of an adult contemporary act. It's not like anyone who wants to buy the cd will have any trouble finding a Starbucks and maybe things like this will motivate major retail stores to reconsider their current approach when they keep losing millions in sales to a coffee house chain.

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Postby BlueChair » Wed Jun 29, 2005 12:26 pm

Doesn't bother me either. When I go to Starbucks I hear better music than what's playing at the local record shop, and exclusive deals help the artist have more control over the promotion of their product.
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Postby wardo68 » Wed Jun 29, 2005 12:41 pm

The (former) independent retail manager in me bristles at the idea of something being sold through an outlet as non-rock 'n' roll and big-box corporate as Starbucks, but the (ongoing) Dylan fan in me is happy whenever any rare stuff gets official release, whatever the outlet. So I'll probably pick it up as soon as I see it, even if I don't buy their coffee that day.

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Postby Who Shot Sam? » Wed Jun 29, 2005 1:06 pm

wardo68 wrote:The (former) independent retail manager in me bristles at the idea of something being sold through an outlet as non-rock 'n' roll and big-box corporate as Starbucks, but the (ongoing) Dylan fan in me is happy whenever any rare stuff gets official release, whatever the outlet. So I'll probably pick it up as soon as I see it, even if I don't buy their coffee that day.


I'll probably buy it too, but I don't like all of these corporate tie-ins - and Starbucks' coffee is vile.
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Postby Who Shot Sam? » Wed Jun 29, 2005 1:11 pm

El Vez wrote:I don't really have a problem with this. Major retailers are less and less likely to promote a baby boomer act (albeit one who is still an A-list draw) like Dylan and the success of Ray Charles' Genius Loves Company has kind of turned Starbucks into a specialty boutique for artists like Dylan, Charles and Joni Mitchell who get plenty of lip service from the industry but are allotted roughly the same promotional budget of an adult contemporary act. It's not like anyone who wants to buy the cd will have any trouble finding a Starbucks and maybe things like this will motivate major retail stores to reconsider their current approach when they keep losing millions in sales to a coffee house chain.


The next John Prine album - available exclusively at Wal-mart. :wink:
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Postby BlueChair » Wed Jun 29, 2005 1:23 pm

Who Shot Sam? wrote:I'll probably buy it too, but I don't like all of these corporate tie-ins - and Starbucks' coffee is vile.


Vile seems kind of strong. It may not be the best coffee in the world, but it's certainly the best you're going to find when it comes to large chains. Their coffee is the most drinkable. Thanks to them you can be in Kalamazoo (sorry LessThanZero) and buy a cup of coffee that doesn't taste like dirty water.

Hate them for their corporateness, but accept the fact that their coffee really isn't bad.

As for Wal-Mart, they actually refuse to sell anything with a parental advisory sticker, and sometimes even go in and mute profanity on their CDs.
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Postby Who Shot Sam? » Wed Jun 29, 2005 1:28 pm

BlueChair wrote:Vile seems kind of strong. It may not be the best coffee in the world, but it's certainly the best you're going to find when it comes to large chains. Their coffee is the most drinkable. Thanks to them you can be in Kalamazoo (sorry LessThanZero) and buy a cup of coffee that doesn't taste like dirty water.

Hate them for their corporateness, but accept the fact that their coffee really isn't bad.


Not to my taste, I guess. I find their brew really astringent.
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Postby BlueChair » Wed Jun 29, 2005 1:28 pm

What better option do those driving through the US have though? McDonalds? Dunkin' Donuts?
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Postby Who Shot Sam? » Wed Jun 29, 2005 1:35 pm

BlueChair wrote:What better option do those driving through the US have though? McDonalds? Dunkin' Donuts?


Nah, those are worse, I'll admit, especially McDonald's. I just pop around the corner to the little cafe/bakery since I live out in the sticks. They make a nice cup of Joe.

I remember visiting Vancouver a few years ago, and there were two Starbucks situated diagonally across the street from each other.
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Postby BlueChair » Wed Jun 29, 2005 1:37 pm

It is pretty ridiculous.

I'm not trying to sound like Starbucks #1 fan.. I usually brew my own coffee at home.
Last edited by BlueChair on Wed Jun 29, 2005 1:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby miss buenos aires » Wed Jun 29, 2005 1:37 pm

Starbucks also offers part-time workers health insurance, and lets poor planners like me use their bathroom without buying anything. So I like them, even though I don't like coffee.

I read an interesting bit on the origin of the Starbucks logo yesterday; apparently the two-tailed mermaid comes from that age-old question: "How does one have sex with a mermaid?" But the split tail has mostly been stylized out of the picture.

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Postby miss buenos aires » Wed Jun 29, 2005 1:40 pm

Here's the article, in case anyone's interested:

http://www.deadprogrammer.com/?p=1684

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Postby DrSpooky » Wed Jun 29, 2005 3:01 pm

I personally find SpookyG's fresh ground brew the best of all. But I understand that it isn't convenient for everyone. If you are in the area, try it out. :)

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Postby ReadyToHearTheWorst » Wed Jun 29, 2005 5:44 pm

El Vez wrote:It's not like anyone who wants to buy the cd will have any trouble finding a Starbucks ...


Yup, there's plenty of Starbucks hereabouts, but I'll still not be able to get my mits on it as it's a North America only release - same arrangement as the EC Artist's Choice CD - and they don't ship abroad ( or to Quebec! ).
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Postby Mr. Average » Wed Jun 29, 2005 6:49 pm

When I travel through New England there is no substitute for Dunkin' Donuts coffee, with Starbucks a distant second. At least with the people I visit, who buy their coffee by the pound from DD, not from Starbucks.

The Starbucks/CD marketing idea is brilliant. You place an order for a 5$ cup of coffee, and then patiently stand around while they make it. After spending $5 for a coffee drink (a luxury item), it is easy to rationalize a CD purchase while your waiting. You have a capive audience, and the territorial imperatives associated with lot's of people waiting for their drinks induces people to browse/pick things up/read the CD cover etc.

And buy stuff that they don't really need.


Old joke:
Starbucks now requires each new hire to undergo 32 hours of training prior to serving their first coffee beverage. The breakdown?

1 hour dedicated to how to make the various coffee drinks, and;

31 hours dedicated to teaching the employee to keep from laughing out loud while charging $5 for a cup of coffee.
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Postby whar » Wed Jun 29, 2005 6:56 pm

Mr. Average wrote:When I travel through New England there is no substitute for Dunkin' Donuts coffee,


Now you're just flattering me, Mr. A. :oops:
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Postby martinfoyle » Wed Jun 29, 2005 7:41 pm

BlueChair wrote:It is pretty ridiculous.

I'm not trying to sound like Starbucks #1 fan.. I usually brew my own coffee at home.


What's wrong with your local Tim Hortons? Be Canadian!

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Postby BlueChair » Wed Jun 29, 2005 10:52 pm

martinfoyle wrote:
BlueChair wrote:It is pretty ridiculous.

I'm not trying to sound like Starbucks #1 fan.. I usually brew my own coffee at home.


What's wrong with your local Tim Hortons? Be Canadian!


I have been known to enjoy a cup of Timmy's from time to time :)
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Postby verbal gymnastics » Thu Jun 30, 2005 5:35 am

Why don't the record stores introduce lounge areas into their stores, sell coffee, play selections from CDs and then try and tie up coffee distribution deals?
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Postby BlueChair » Thu Jun 30, 2005 6:17 am

verbal gymnastics wrote:Why don't the record stores introduce lounge areas into their stores, sell coffee, play selections from CDs and then try and tie up coffee distribution deals?


There are a few that do, but they tend to be overpriced, like Borders
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Postby ReadyToHearTheWorst » Thu Jun 30, 2005 6:53 am

verbal gymnastics wrote:Why don't the record stores introduce lounge areas into their stores, sell coffee, play selections from CDs and then try and tie up coffee distribution deals?


Some branches of FOP in Scotland go one better, they have a bar!
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Postby Who Shot Sam? » Thu Jun 30, 2005 6:54 am

ReadyToHearTheWorst wrote:
verbal gymnastics wrote:Why don't the record stores introduce lounge areas into their stores, sell coffee, play selections from CDs and then try and tie up coffee distribution deals?


Some branches of FOP in Scotland go one better, they have a bar!


Now that's my kind of bookstore!
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Postby Bob And Charlotte » Thu Jun 30, 2005 7:36 am

I am really angry with this .... there´s no Starbucks here in Brasil .... :x


other than that i can´t see any problem ....

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Postby cosmos » Thu Jun 30, 2005 8:52 am

I've never been to Starbucks.

As much as a Dylan fan as I am, I'm not gonna go there just to purchase this CD.

Supposedly, the bootleg version has more tracks than the "official" release will have anyway.


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