Ripped by Greg Kot
How the Wired Generation Revolutionized Music

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Synopsis

A decade ago the vast majority of mainstream music was funneled through a handful of media conglomerates. Now, more people are listening to more music from a greater variety of sources than at any time in history. And big corporations such as Viacom, Clear Channel, and Sony are no longer the sole gatekeepers and distributors, their monopoly busted by a revolution -- an uprising led by bands and fans networking on the Internet. Ripped tells the story of how the laptop generation created a new grassroots music industry, with the fans and bands rather than the corporations in charge. In this new world, bands aren't just musicmakers but self-contained multimedia businesses; and fans aren't just consumers but distributors and even collaborators.

As the Web popularized bands and albums that previously would have been relegated to obscurity, innovative artists -- from Prince to Death Cab for Cutie -- started coming up with, and stumbling into, alternative ways of getting their music out to fans. Live music took on an even more significant role. TV shows and commercials emerged as great places to hear new tunes. Sample-based composition and mash-ups leapfrogged ahead of the industry's, and the law's, ability to keep up with them. Then, in 2007, Radiohead released an album exclusively on the Internet and allowed customers to name their own price, including $0.00. Radiohead's "it's up to you" marketing coup seized on a concept the old music industry had forgotten: the customer is always right.

National radio host and critically acclaimed music journalist Greg Kot masterfully chronicles this story of how we went from $17.99 to $0.00 in less than a decade. It's a fascinating tale of backward thinking, forward thinking, and the power of music.
 

About Greg Kot

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An award-winning music critic for the Chicago Tribune, GREG KOT contributes to a wide array of national magazines, including Rolling Stone, and co-hosts the rock 'n' roll talk show Sound Opinions on radio and television, and at www.soundopinions.net.
 
Published April 30, 2009 by Scribner. 276 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Computers & Technology, Arts & Photography, Business & Economics. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Ripped

Kirkus Reviews

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Clear, concise and entertaining account of the tectonic shift in the recording industry over the past decade, thanks to technological innovations like the Internet, the MP3 and the iPod.

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of Ripped: How the Wired Generat...

The New York Times

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Two new books by Greg Kot and Mark Helprin offer very different partisan takes on digital copyright issues but fail to come to terms with the counterarguments.

May 19 2009 | Read Full Review of Ripped: How the Wired Generat...

The New York Times

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A fascinating tale of arrogant record companies versus kids with computers. Guess who wins.

Aug 16 2009 | Read Full Review of Ripped: How the Wired Generat...

Publishers Weekly

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In what has become a growing field, Kot's account of the music industry's massive struggles and glimmers of success in the digital age stands out for its sturdily constructed prose and co

Mar 09 2009 | Read Full Review of Ripped: How the Wired Generat...

Christian Science Monitor

If not, music critic/journalist Greg Kot helps decipher the jargon and update us on the state of pop music in his insightful new book Ripped: How the Wired Generation Revolutionized Music.

Jun 08 2009 | Read Full Review of Ripped: How the Wired Generat...

San Francisco Chronicle

"A technological freak-out" is how Pink Floyd's first manager, Peter Jenner, described the current state of the music business at the 2006 Future of Music Policy Summit, and this "freak-out" is the subject of "Ripped," the thought-provoking new book from esteemed Chicago Tribune music critic Greg...

Jun 10 2009 | Read Full Review of Ripped: How the Wired Generat...

David G. Schwartz

Other established artists, from Prince to Radiohead, took similar steps to sell or provide music directly to listeners, and lesser-known groups seized on online radio stations and sites like YouTube, MySpace, and Facebook to get their music to potential fans.

Jun 24 2009 | Read Full Review of Ripped: How the Wired Generat...

Reader Rating for Ripped
80%

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