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Gracenote.com announces legal lyrics downloads
July 14, 2006 7:39 PM   Subscribe

An end to mondegreens? It looks like Gracenote, the company behind the CDDB (CD database), is looking to enhance your music-listening experience by providing an expansive and "legitimate" lyrics database in association with major on-line digital music providers. Will this be the end of the road for existing lyrics sites? [more inside]
posted by persona non grata (35 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
Gracenote--which, incidentally, uses information provided by you and me to provide it's CDDB services (see the first comment on that post)--has been quite aggressive in the past in terms of protecting it's niche and technology. And the only real challenge to Gracenote's meta-tag supremacy seems to have flamed out, leaving the company room to grow.

Some music web sites, such as OLGA.net (the On-Line Guitar Archive, a popular guitar music site) have gone to great lengths to protect themselves from infringing copyright based on lyric transcriptions by only providing limited lyrics. Other, perhaps less wise folks have tried to simplify the lyrics searching process and have been shot down. And of course the EFF has weighed in.
posted by persona non grata at 7:39 PM on July 14, 2006


Hold on-- the only real challenge to Gracenote's meta-tag supremacy-- only from the worthless CD track hash standpoint. There are and were tons of companies doing far better than Gracenote at other music tagging and music metadata type applications. GN only seemed to realise recently that CDs were on the way out.
posted by neustile at 7:55 PM on July 14, 2006


I forgot to mention that this has been talked about here before.
posted by persona non grata at 8:10 PM on July 14, 2006


A long time ago there was one big lyric site, The Internet Lyric Database I think (gee I wonder where they got that name). It was the big source of lyrics until someone in the music biz had them shut down. They were in the Netherlands or some place like that and it took awhile but they got them. It took several years and then a gazillion sites came back into the fray. I never could figure out why they aggressively attacked that one site, yet let these lesser sites (well they may not be lesser anymore) exist.
posted by caddis at 8:30 PM on July 14, 2006


caddis: was that the same thing as lyrics.ch ? That site was awesome until they sold out (got sued?) and had that stupid Java viewer that wouldn't let you cut / paste and only displayed the lyrics for ~30 seconds.
posted by bbuda at 8:45 PM on July 14, 2006


re mondegreens - I hear "She knows how to make a crow blush" in the Kim Carne's song, She's Got Bette Davis Eyes. Everyone says it is "pro blush". Anyone else hear it this way?
posted by vronsky at 8:50 PM on July 14, 2006


vronsky: "she knows just what it takes to make it hopeless"
posted by gubo at 9:03 PM on July 14, 2006


props should be given to Jon Carroll from SF who brought the term mondegreen back into our living language...
posted by kozad at 9:09 PM on July 14, 2006


LyricWiki.org is pretty nice, but I don't know if they have a plan for when they get sued.
posted by scottreynen at 9:11 PM on July 14, 2006


I think that might have been it bbuda. First they got sued, then they sold out, I guess to pay the suit.
posted by caddis at 9:13 PM on July 14, 2006


Jesus, asshole much? Its OK to make a grammatical mistake. Its even OK twice.

Will this be the end of the road for existing lyrics sites?

My 2 cents says no.
posted by mrgrimm at 9:31 PM on July 14, 2006


"You might hear a song (on) the radio. You might not have heard the name of the artist or song, but you remember a line," said Jim Hollingsworth, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Gracenote. "Now you'll be able to type in a line of the song, and we'll be able to provide the top songs with that lyric."

NO WAY! AWESOME-O 4000! I always used Google, but fuck that. I'd much rather install some useless CD indexing service.
posted by mrgrimm at 9:33 PM on July 14, 2006


What a douche.
posted by vronsky at 9:34 PM on July 14, 2006


mrgrimm hits it. this is going nowhere. sell your gracenote stock. haha.
posted by blacklite at 9:55 PM on July 14, 2006


Wait--will this service provide the nasty spyware and browser hijacks that existing lyrics sites provide? If not, where will I go for those, porn sites?
posted by goatdog at 10:08 PM on July 14, 2006


It would be cool if Itunes had built-in lyrics (album covers are ridiculous, i think)

vronsky--it is "pro blush" (and i always saw that as prostitute or whore being the "pro")
posted by amberglow at 10:11 PM on July 14, 2006


Yeah I think you are right amberglow - all my googling and no crows. I still think it is a better lyric though.
posted by vronsky at 10:16 PM on July 14, 2006


amberglow, there's a widget with a lyrics option.
posted by padraigin at 10:21 PM on July 14, 2006


Heh, lame.
posted by delmoi at 10:22 PM on July 14, 2006


As far as I have ascertained, the CDDB works off of track number and track length, something so unique that to have two albums duplicating it would be of lottery-winning chances.

How could that possibly be under attack?

Oh. Reprinting words. Which we hear. Whenever we play the song. Which we bought.

Assholes.
posted by sourwookie at 11:58 PM on July 14, 2006


Wait, it's legal!

Sorry, the word "legitimate" always spooks me. Makes me hide my wallet.
posted by sourwookie at 12:00 AM on July 15, 2006


they've tried over and over again to shut down lyrics sites. i can still type "song_title lyrics" into google and get lyrics for free.
posted by StrasbourgSecaucus at 1:06 AM on July 15, 2006


vronsky: I always heard it as 'crow blush', too. It's better that way, too. 'pro blush' isn't nearly as strong.
posted by Malor at 1:08 AM on July 15, 2006


Yep, crows, the unblushable bird.
posted by Pendragon at 1:21 AM on July 15, 2006


No need to fuck around with lyrics websites. Just get Evil Lyrics. Stupid name, priceless app.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:15 AM on July 15, 2006 [1 favorite]


re mondegreens - I hear "She knows how to make a crow blush" in the Kim Carne's song, She's Got Bette Davis Eyes.


vronsky--it is "pro blush"

and it's also a Jackie DeShannon song. She did it first & better.

/geek
posted by jonmc at 5:24 AM on July 15, 2006


lyrics.ch......sigh...I miss her....
posted by inigo2 at 5:41 AM on July 15, 2006


As far as I have ascertained, the CDDB works off of track number and track length, something so unique that to have two albums duplicating it would be of lottery-winning chances.

I believe you're right about how CDDB works, and in the sense that somebody wins the lottery nearly every time.

There are millions of CDs released, and they've all got somewhere between one and 99 tracks, and a total length of somewhere between one second and, what, eighty minutes? I'm not going to do the math, but, anecdotally, haven't you ever had CDDB/FreeDB return multiple matches? I was under the impression, even, that multiple matches are the reason that FreeDB has that clumsy limited-to-a-dozen-or-so genre field.

I could be wrong about all of this.
posted by box at 6:51 AM on July 15, 2006


"but, anecdotally, haven't you ever had CDDB/FreeDB return multiple matches?"

Yes, and I've had them return completely wrong answers as well. Or, the CD will show up and the only difference between the two titles is an accent mark or a hyphen. Ever so slightly annoying.
posted by drstein at 7:08 AM on July 15, 2006


Bette Davis Eyes does have the line "She's precocious and she knows just what it takes to make a pro blush."
posted by Ironmouth at 8:19 AM on July 15, 2006


The Internet Lyric Database

lyrics.ch was called the "International Lyrics Server", and was incredibly awesome. They got in some legal trouble for it, and were forced to switch to this ridiculous Java implementation that blanked the screen whenever you touched a key to prevent you from copy-pasting the lyrics or doing a screen capture. It was hideous.
posted by Sibrax at 8:45 AM on July 15, 2006


Thanks jon - I did not know that. Must hunt it down.

I have a minipops version which as you can imagine is pretty freaky. Those wacky brits.
posted by vronsky at 8:49 AM on July 15, 2006


But will she lay you on the throne? That's just gross, man.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 10:00 AM on July 15, 2006


I sent out the original newgroup for alt.music.lyrics and maintained its FAQ for a while, back when you could list all the lyrics ftp sites on Earth in less than a page.

Amazing how far we've come in not so long. Great post, too.
posted by ikkyu2 at 12:11 AM on July 16, 2006


Thanks, ikkyu2. I appreciate your expretise as well, and your namesake. Mad great stories for kids.
posted by persona non grata at 7:32 PM on July 17, 2006


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