As any music collector can tell you, buying box sets and reissues is an expensive hobby. It's not often that fans catch a break, either; outside of the occasional Cyber Monday deal before the holidays, prices on box sets rarely go down, unless you've found the right connections in the secondary market.
So it's refreshing to see labels taking a nice step toward alleviating the financial crunch that comes with box set collecting. Fans of Sony and Legacy may have noted their recently-created Web store, Pop Market, which sells Legacy box sets and compilations at cut-rate prices for limited, 24-to-72-hour periods. (Full disclosure: it's made some of the holiday shopping that much easier at TSD HQ!) Rhino's done quite a nice ongoing sale for its "12 Days of Rhino," too.
Sales are nice on anything, but they're particularly nice on sets that could usually run upwards of $50 (or worse). Of course, such sets make one ask questions about box sets and sale ideas. Permit us to ask:
- Where's Universal's sales? Legacy and Rhino have deep catalogues and notable presences as catalogue labels go. Of the other major labels (EMI and Universal), the latter one has a deep catalogue and its own reissue imprints (UMe and the direct-order Hip-o Select). I wouldn't have minded seeing a discount on some of those Motown singles boxes, and I'm sure some of you would agree.
- Conversely, where's Sony's direct-order imprint? I'm constantly perplexed that Legacy doesn't have much of a limited-edition imprint (a la Hip-o Select or Rhino Handmade). While they have taken on such projects this year with great success (the Raw Power box, the Elvis box), why not make it a more permanent thing?
- EMI? You there? I mean, there's plenty of problems over there, but I'm not sure they've ever had a dedicated catalogue project - and certainly not an entire label. Let us know if anything changes, though.
What say you, dear reader? What sales have you enjoyed in your pursuit of catalogue gold? What questions would you ask a major label about their reissue and box set output?