I do my best thinking with a cup of coffee and music streaming through my ear phones. As I read a Freakonomics blog on music, I came across a real gem halfway through the article from Fredric Dannen, author of Hit Men: Power Brokers and Fast Money Inside the Music Business:
My epiphany, if you want to call it that, was simply this: consumers of recorded music will always embrace the format that provides the greatest convenience. No other factor — certainly not high fidelity — will move consumers substantially to change their listening and buying habits. The single exception to this rule was the introduction of two-channel stereo in the late fifties.
Way to boil it down for us Fred. Seriously.
iTunes made buying music and playing music on an iPod really easy, that's why it took off (plus it looked cool). So where is the next evolution in convenience? Songbird can suck music up from the rest of the internet. Do a search, find a blog with your favorite wilco in San Francisco in 2004 bootleg, and you are off and running. (Here's my Wilco search through Songbird) Did I mention I could add these songs to my Web Library and play them anytime I'm online.
Now, Songbird makes it possible, not convenient, but something tells me those folks read blogs too. I can almost hear them chirping while they work.