The Sandinista Project — free for one day only!
UPDATE: The free download is over. Thank you for participating.
Happy Joe Strummer’s birthday
Joe Strummer of the Clash would have been 57 today. So today seems like a good day to give Clash fans a present.
It’s been two years. Does anyone remember The Sandinista Project?
In May 2007, Abe Bradshaw and the crazy geniuses at 2 Minutes 59 Records let me put out a borderline-insane track-by-track tribute to the Clash’s Sandinista!, with a different artist performing each of the album’s 36 songs. (You can read Abe’s version of the origin myth here.) We received mostly positive reviews from publications ranging from The New York Times to Pasadena Weekly, although someone told me that Robert Christgau hated it. More important, it was a great experience: I got to work with many of my favorite performers and create something.
The Sandinista Project is free for a day
The Sandinista Project didn’t set any sales records. Indeed, the number of copies distributed by unauthorized file-sharing sites was greater than the number we sold. We didn’t undertake the project to make ourselves any money (it was a charity record) so I didn’t mind that it was available everywhere for free. That’s the record biz nowadays. But it did bother me that so many of the versions available on torrenting sites (yes, I downloaded a few; depressing research) sounded like crap. They were encoded at low bit rates and sample rates, sometimes there were digital skips, and there was never any packaging. Guys, if you’re going to steal from us, at least make us look and sound good. Please.
To rectify this situation, for one day only, we’re offering, without charge, 256K versions (in M4A format, which works in iTunes and elsewhere) of every song on the record, as well as one bonus cut and PDFs of the CD booklet and packaging. So now, if you decide to steal this, it won’t sound quite so bad. You’ll still be stealing, but you won’t be stealing junk. And hurry up: this is a 24-hour offer. At midnight Pacific Time tonight, I’m taking down the big file.
UPDATE: The 24 hours is over; thank you all for participating.