It was a weird decade for the music industry. We watched the major labels implode right before our eyes, all the while protesting the future and trying to criminalize their user base. Would things have been different if the labels had put together a cheap, DRM-free solution in 2000? Maybe, maybe not, but there is no way it could have turned out worse.
It was a weird decade to be a music fan. For my entire life, the album had been the lingua franca of music: songs were the basic unit and singles were cool, but albums were a statement of purpose. But I started out the decade listening to albums from start to finish and ended it fragmenting them into my various mixes.
Now, I have a mix for the house, a mix for work, and a mix for my car: my own personalized “radio stations” that eternally combine older favorites and new songs. As someone who had been making mix tapes for himself since his early 20s, I’d only been waiting for this my entire life. But there was a consequence to the endless resequence: by 2006, most of my favorite albums revealed themselves to be collections of songs that stood out from the others.