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Doing my part for open audio

The past few years have been completely surreal for me. I still can’t quite believe I’m working for Mozilla and helping the project in such a significant way. It’s one of those things you dream about but you never expect it to become true. Then it happens and you realize it’s just a matter of working hard and doing things right. Go figure.

I keep feeling the same about a side project of mine that began shortly before I joined Mozilla. A long time friend of mine has lead a heavy metal band called Pneuma for quite a few years now. They had to break ties with their production company recently because of unacceptable delays on their part, and lots of the typical crap professional musicians have to deal with. They were looking for people to invest in the independent production of their next album, and I guess I was just in the right place at the right time.

Of course I wouldn’t invest in them if I didn’t think they were really good.  I have great expectations for their upcoming album and I’m helping them in every way I can. The best way I can help them is by bringing my knowledge of the web and technology to the table. So far I’ve helped them set up their temporary website and twitter account. I will also be helping them out with their online distribution, because not having your album listed on the iTunes Store is a very new and very big mistake a band can easily make.

But I digress. The point of this post is that I decided to use HTML5 on their site, and provide their first single in open OGG/Vorbis format (falling back to MP3 and Quicktime), with the added bonus that the band agreed to have the track available for download and free distribution. So anybody can listen and download the track in their preferred format, MP3 or OGG. The audio player looks fantastic on the site, by the way. Much better than QuickTime or WMP plugins. The audio quality is also great, and the file is much smaller than its MP3 counterpart.

Adding also to the surrealism of the whole “music producer” side of my life is the fact that Pneuma will be the opening act at the first Metallica concert in Costa Rica, next Sunday. This is the biggest concert in Costa Rican history, and I’m pretty sure I’ll be backstage. I haven’t really taken that in yet, there’s just too much work to do before the concert. But WOW.

If you like thrash / progressive metal, I recommend you visit and have a quick listen. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

{ 3 } Comments

  1. Ken Saunders | 2010/03/04 at 1:16 PM | Permalink

    Awesome work. Really awesome.

    Gee, I wonder if Metallica would ever consider making a song available for free?
    Just kidding, just kidding. 🙂
    This sets an awesome example that I hope others follow.

    Of course I’d place the ogg first, but that’s me.
    Perhaps hinting to download either format, visitors should right click > Save Link As… or do you suppose that most people know that by now?

  2. jorge | 2010/03/04 at 1:27 PM | Permalink

    I thought about the right-click hint myself, but if you don’t know how to download a file using right-click (or Save As from the next page), what are your chances of know what right-click even means?

    I might add that, though.

  3. Ken Saunders | 2010/03/04 at 8:45 PM | Permalink

    LOL! Good point.

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