I'm sure the folks at Merge Records are pleased. But if you ever needed more proof of the fragmentation of the market for popular music, this is it.
We just got home from school, after a stop at the store. Skylar immediately sat down at her computer, now freshly appointed with the larger flat-panel monitor that had been sitting unused for too long. I went to pick out a CD, something that would sustain me in my imminent floor scrubbing, and picked one of my all-time favorite "comfort" albums, The Byrds' Never Before, a collection of the band's rarities. I walked into the kitchen to put her salmon under the broiler and she turned to me and said, "Thanks for putting this on for me, dad." At first, I didn't register what she meant, since I'd been absorbed in the tasks at hand. But then I realized that, because "Mr. Tambourine Man" was playing, she had assumed that I'd selected it on her behalf. And that makes me very, very happy.