Remember when Al Gore invented the Internet? Me too. Remember when your IT guy at work said he could totally design a website for your band? Remember how easy it was going to be to develop a worldwide following now that you could reach your yet undiscovered Australian fan base? Me too. Know how many Aussies will read this post? None.

The Internet, the great white hope of the struggling musician, has in some ways turned out to be (for said musician) little more than a new delivery method for handing out demo tapes to your friends. In doing so, I believe that the Internet has drastically de-valued music. We all thought it would make us rich but it has only proven to make us even poorer.

Remember the one guy who got famous because of his success on Me either. See?!? Me either! I remember reading about him a couple of years ago and what a phenomenon it was that he landed the big record deal from putting his music on a website. He proved it could be done. Whathisface actually did it. What was his face anyway? I forget. And so did you.

The Internet has brought us everything for free. The browser I’m using right now is free. The software I use for blogging is free. The software I use to edit the pictures on this site is free. The software I used to record all of my music for the last few years was free because the Internet made it easy for me to steal by providing free software to search for it. The software I used to rip the mp3s that I put on the Internet was free. The FTP program I used to upload them was free because I stole that too. The cell phone I used to text my friend to tell him my new song is available for download from my site came with four gazillion free mp3 downloads from Napster but I can’t figure out why he’s not racing to download my masterpiece. It’s free man. Go get it!

The Internet has provided this incredible means of sharing information and art. Now it’s all so easy to get that we forget how valuable it all is. It makes me sad when I think about it. I don’t even really care about my music having less monetary value. My music has never made me any money so, dollar for dollar, it’s holding pretty steady. But the thing that does bother me is that offering music for free often implies (even if it’s only subconsciously) reduced relevance, or less legitimacy. It makes people care less.

But with all of that said, I like being able to post a song on this site immediately after finishing it. I like being able to think that just adding a sax part to a demo is reason enough to put another mp3 out there. I like the immediate feedback. I like for people to know that I’m still making music even though I’m not in a band any more. I like using the abilities God has freely given me and freely giving you the product of those abilities. If your God-given ability is carpentry, I expect you to do as I have done and give me a free house.

I look around and see how many people have forgotten what an incredible treasure music is. That’s a drag.