A buddy of mine was telling me about “Potato Hole,” a collaboration between Booker T. Jones (of Booker T. & the M.G.’s) and the Drive-By Truckers. He referred to it as an “album,” and I chuckled because neither he nor I have listened to music on an album — by the classic definition — in at least 15 years. In this age of music downloads and MP3 players the word album seems outdated, but what else can you call it?
The term album, referring to a collection of recorded music, originated around the turn of the 20th century. At the time, the 78 rpm records could hold only about 4 to 5 minutes of music on each side, meaning an entire opera or symphony required several records to capture the complete work.
The German record company Odeon is generally considered as the pioneer of the album concept. In 1909 the company released the “Nutcracker Suite” on 4 double-sided discs in a specially-designed package that included a leather cover and sleeves to hold and protect each record. The package could be stored on a shelf and resembled a photo album.
Other companies copied the concept and offered “record albums” with empty sleeves so customers could store records they had already purchased.
By the time the multi-track 33 1/3 Long Play (LP) records came along in the 1930s, the term album was generally accepted and transferred to the new medium. Today, the term is still in use, though some argue it is outdated.
For 2 bonus points, what term would you use to replace the word album, particularly when referring to music that is downloaded in electronic form. You can use a word that already exists, make up a new word or combine existing words.
Each team will receive a maximum of 2 bonus points; HOWEVER, all team members are encouraged to submit an answer because the suggestion I like the best will receive an additional 2 bonus points.
E-mail your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org NO LATER than 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2009.
Did you know?
- Thomas Edison received a patent for the cylinder phonograph in 1878.
- Edison’s first recording was “Mary Had a Little Lamb.”
- After inventing the phonorgraph, Edison was nicknamed “The Wizard of Menlo Park.” Edison had established his laboratory in Menlo Park, N.J.