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“Now!” series is not now

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The series of big hits all on one disc, known as “Now That’s What I Call Music” consistently top the charts, including the latest volume, “#17,” which is No. 1 on Billboard this week. The problem is that they come out months behind the time that these songs actually ruled the charts.

Examples from Volume 17, released on November 2nd:
• “Let’s Get it Started” by The Black Eyed Peas – major hit last Spring during the NBA finals
• “Lean Back” by Terror Squad – still at the clubs but biggest in June

• “Take Me Out” by Franz Ferdinand – great song but from May
• “Ch-Check it Out” by the Beastie Boys – not a great song but also from May
• “Angels” by Jessica Simpson – Never a big hit in any time frame or any galaxy
• “Pieces of Me” by Ashlee Simpson – Suddenly en vogue again because of the “SNL” scandal; but still from July.

This might seem nit picky or that it is easy to be an armchair DJ when you don’t have to worry about securing music rights and producing and distributing millions of discs. But in the music world, time moves very fast and what was “now then” is not “now now.” If anyone should know this, the labels should.

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About Chip Ross

  • Eric Olsen

    Chip, I don’t think MTV has anything to do with this: the Now series is put out by a consortium of the major labels as far s I know

  • http://www.culturedrift.com Chip Ross

    You are right Eric. Bad journalism on my part, but the point of being dated is still valid.

  • Eric Olsen

    agreed, of course, thanks

  • http://www.temptationwaits.com visualsimplicity

    I think part of the matter of the rights of the music lies in economics. If you compile a CD of “actual now” hits, it’d take away from the sales of the CDs of the original artist. I mean, why buy 12 CDs for 12 songs when you can buy 1 CD for those same songs. The NOW CDs are more like last hoorahs to milk more money from people. Maybe they should rename it then? Since the system won’t ever change. I suppose Totally Hits is a more appropriate title.

  • Eric Olsen

    good point Vis, a physical compilation with artwork and promotion and all of that crap is always going to take time and not be literally NOW, but such a thing could and is being done everyday in cyberspace via the per-song stores

  • http://www.culturedrift.com Chip Ross

    Or call it “Hits of Summer 2004″ to match up with the timeframe it represents. In this age of CD-burning and buying singles through i-Tunes, etc. we can create our own mix CDs reflecting what we are into right now. That’s the best option. Cheap plug time: my monthly mix tapes listed on my site, http://www.culturedrift.com/websites/culturedrift/music.mix.nov04.html

  • http://www.albertsgifts.com music gifts

    wow, they’re up to 17, what does that tell you? they sell, for starters..even if it is “5 minutes ago”, they should call the discs, “Now thats what I called music…” or..”that was some good ass music”