My interview with Greg Kampf was both enlightening and wide-ranging, covering a lot of unexpected topics and taking off on a few tangents. Part 1 can be found here, in which we talked about the history of Greg Kampf’s radio show, La Villa Strangiato, and the roots of what we now call prog rock.
In Part 3, we talk about how to define prog rock in the 2010s and prog rock’s effect on pop culture.
Part 2: Prog rock in the Internet Age
So without getting you in any legal trouble, how did the internet age help with your discovery of new prog rock?
I’m still very much a believer in purchasing physical products. I’m not a huge downloader. I have downloaded materials that were either out of print or almost impossible to find. There are some albums from the Québec scene from the 1970s that have never seen a CD release, and there are some aficionados in Québec who were making these great LP blogs these long-lost prog recordings and they were making them downloadable, so I did download them, heard them, and now some of these albums have been given an official release through great organizations such as Prog Québec.
Since then, I’ve actually been able to purchase them. They’re all cleaned up, they’re beautiful. And so if you were to see the size of my CD collection, you would probably be a little bit alarmed. I know my wife constantly reminds me that from time to time it’s maybe not a bad idea to cull a little bit. But I’m still very much about the physical medium and making sure that the artists are compensated for their efforts. A lot of artists actually reach out to the program, too, and they’re happy to send along promo items to the station and sometimes in person at concerts, as well.
I guess that really helps since you have a lot of contemporary artists on your show.
A lot, and I’m finding now as we’re moving through the 2010s with the rise of Bandcamp, a lot of bands are just putting their material up on Bandcamp for free downloads. They’re not expecting to be paid for it, for better or for worse.
If they’re expecting any kind of remuneration at all, it would be through merchandise sales, at gigs, through the gigs themselves, via gate receipts, and they may or may not even produce a physical CD/LP for sale.