Technology Issues...

Opinion Paper by NAA President, Norman Seaton, Ed.D

Notice: While we know these technologies are available, it is hard to determine what we should be doing with it.

Recordings and Printed Music

As musicians, we wake up to a new world everyday! While it is exciting, it is our obligation to maximize the benefits while not being overwhelmed with the opportunities. With new technology, it is relatively easy to record and distribute personal recordings and/or printed music. In fact, many high-profile musical groups are self-marketing and avoiding the recording and printing companies. It is just another one of those options that are available today that are completely unnerving the old world of agents, recording companies, printing companies and today’s musicians. To help balance these new technologies with the traditional methods, training sessions are expected to be developed and distributed to the various accordion associations that support the NAA. 

New Technology

YouTubes and IPods: The growing excitement of YouTube recordings is really taking over the musical world. Instead of recording and distributing sample CDs, today’s musician simply cuts a YouTube recording with inexpensive computerized camera and puts it on the web, then the potential customer can simply click on the link and see the musician in action. One of the recordings made at the 2007 National Accordion Convention now has over 80,000 views. This type of worldwide coverage was never possible in the past.  One accordionist has over 1.8 million views within the past few years. Consider this aspect, today any enterprising (and good) accordionist has the power to reach over a million viewers with a single YouTube recording. For those of you who attended the 2008 National Accordion Convention, you may remember that we offered this YouTube service at no charge. Kay Hickman of Austin, Texas, headed this project in 2008.  

On-line Printed Music

The day of going to the corner music store and browsing the printed music files is rapidly going away. With the power of the Internet, the user will soon be able to view and hear the music in any key, then print the desired version on the home printer. The NAA and others are using this method to distribute convention music. To show you the power of this technology; while planning a private party, the host is able to access the web, find the music to a favorite song, print it out and give it to the musician, who (hopefully) can sight-read music.  

Vinyl Recording (78 – 45- Long Play Albums)

Now that some of us have trashed the old recordings, the computer companies have developed a turntable that can be used to transfer the old music to the computer so the musician can capture the sounds of yesterday. This has caught the attention of the younger musicians (ages 16 – 25), and they are now fascinated with the music of the 20s and 30s. They are now making their own recordings and using the original soundtracks as training tools. The results are amazing!