Easy Ed's Weekly Broadside

I am really upset about the demise of the iPod classic.  I don't know what I'd do without mine.  I'm wondering if I should run out and buy one, before they are all gone.  Don't need one now, but the one I'm now using is bound to fail eventually.  Does anyone know if there will be any problems with iPod/iTunes compatibility in the future?  I'd hate to take a new iPod classic out of the box a few years from now and find that I can't sync it.

   Hi Easy Ed,

        So, the new ipod is already sold out? I'm not much a fan of Steve Earle, but I listened to the video you posted, and I liked the alt/country song with some country guitar. Pretty good. I enjoy reading the new discussions the best, funny to see a guy like Alan Harrison, from another mag, not like the new format. If you check the Alexa site on website info, looks like traffic is down for ND, I'm not so sure how accurate the site is, but it is run by google. Looking at this sites's info, ND's biggest year for traffic was 2011. This site, to me just lacks that thing that makes the internet fun. It's like reading a mag on Kindle. Websites blink and pull you in .  The white background is just not interesting to me. Trying to read album reviews, but honestly , not familiar with most artists.  I keep checking in, but it's still hard to navigate. Keep writing.

@Jeff: If you'd like to get an iPod 160, you'll have to search. Many of the Apple retail stores have pulled them down this week and returned the inventory.


@Jim: I'm not sure you understood what I wrote in regards to the older iPod. It's no longer in production; not sold out. The new iPhones will be in stores 9/19.


Regarding No Depression....old and new....I've pretty much gotten over my concern and complaints about any design, editorial or content changes that have taken place this past month. It is what it is. Much is improved; other areas not so much. But that is set to be changed or modified in the coming weeks, so I'd advise that the verdict is not in yet.

The concern or note regarding site traffic is a larger issue; one that might actually go beyond just this website. People are spending less time on their desktops, more time on mobile devices. And they tend to go onto a site for just one reason, and not linger or browse. The problem, if that's what it is, with No Depression as I see it, is the inability to leverage their base or core audience. And the inability of offering something so incredible that you can't find somewhere else. I know this has been identified and they are working hard to get that mojo back. Whether they can or not, is anybodys guess. But I'm confident in this current team and hope the traffic starts to build again. Won't happen overnight. 

I was surprised you didn't have more to say about U2, considering your well-documented admiration for Bono.

I would have guessed the old iPod classic stopped selling long ago. Considering what smartphones do nowadays, I would have questioned why folks want a separate portable digital music device at this point, anyway? So much to carry. You'd have to only wear cargo pants, ever. Then again, my days of listening to music while in transit are behind me. Most of my music comes out of a stereo these days, so that puts me a little out of touch. RIP iPod classic, anyhow.

Yeah, it is another device to carry, but it holds 160gb of music.  Of course, no one needs to carry around that much  at any given time.  So, what can I tell you . . . it's irrational.  But I need it!!  I was able to find a new one at a university book store - the last one they had.

Hey, whatever happended with the Neil Young player device?


@The Neil Young Player....he's giving it to Pegi as part of the divorce settlement. 

first ones are being delivered in october2014. the pono music store is opening soon. i'll let you know if i got scammed.

I never did buy an iPod, and my iPhone3 just crapped out after 3 1/2 years, replaced with a 5s mere weeks before the jumbotron sized 6 comes out. Never used the phone for it's music capability and I doubt this new 5s will be used for music either.  Aside from functioning, and being faster than the 3, the main benefit of the 5s for me is not having to listen to my 10 year old crack wise about my antique 3.  I still prefer physical books but have about $150 in gift cards to Barnes & Noble, which I should probably put toward a Nook on which I could read a few of the Guralnick books Ed mentioned. But I'm not ready to go paperless quite yet.

These Broadsides are fun, Ed.

I tell you what, I'm an old folker, but I love my ipod touch more than words can say. I probably would have never bought one, but I got one for Christmas a couple years ago. I use it with ear buds (a little,) in my truck -and with a boom box. It's also become my most used camera. Nobody's losing any money from my ipod; it's mostly loaded with tracks from cds that I've purchased, and a few tracks I've purchased from Amazon. The best thing you can do with an ipod touch that you can't do with the older pods is to download a bbe sonic maximizer app - it really adds warmth and detail to those compressed files.

>>And for those fans of the old Sony Walkman, it's back. Really. It is. On the heels of a long line of brain-numbing failures such as Betamax videotapes, DAT, the Mini Disc and MemorySticks, there is a high end audio player on the market that allows audiophiles to play FLAC files. It came out in Japan last December and is slowly debuting in various countries around the globe. They never give up. <<

Umm, Ed, there have been devices around for playing flac files through stereo equipment for quite some time.  I personally have been using the Squeezebox line from Logitech for just this purpose, although sadly that benighted company has discontinued the product.  Many others are out there.

But still, and for the long-term forseeable future, I can play CD quality (or better) music on my stereo, from the comfort of my easy chair.

And for portability?  Well many portable players (and phones) don't play flac, but many will play ALAC (the Apple lossless equivalent of FLAC) and others will play lossless WMA (the Microsoft entry).  And if you are easily scammed, you might check out Neil Young's Pono player.

Get with it, eh?


Awesome broadside, man. I myself am re-reading "Feel Like Going Home," and can't wait for the Phillips bio. (Not only is his Elvis bio my favorite of his, it's one of my favorite books, period.)

Lastly, I had the privilege of attending Camp Copperhead with Mr. Earle, and it was all that (see my article on same in this very on Steve Earle.)

Yeah, it's a shame to see the classic go.    There's something about being able to have my entire collection with me that I find comforting.    Of course, I had to replace the stock 160 gig drive with a 240 gig drive to make that happen.   I sure hope I don't break it or lose it. 

Kevin:  You were able to replace the drive to increase the capacity?  How did you do that?


I'd love the answer to that question as well.  With approaching 29,000 songs on my iPod and lots of podcasts, it's not that far from filling up.

The bigger issue is that I don't yet understand how people are doing this with smartphones.  Not only do they not have the same capacity, but for those of us who listen to music through much of the day (at work, at the gym, or working at home on my computer) it seems that you'd use an enormous amount of your data cap (and we all know unlimited isn't truly unlimited) if you stream all the time.  And that assumes you have a consistenly good connection.  My phone network some only somewhat reliable and I drive through areas that do not have great coverage.

As I said in an earlier post, replacing battery/drive in a classic iPod isn't difficult, if you're handy and have the right tools ('spudger', small screwdrivers, etc.). Parts & instructions are easily found on ebay and places like iFixIt...

As for how ones listens to music on a smartphone all day, it oviously helps to have access to wifi. If on cell network all the time, I don't think it would be really possible. I alway buy the large model iPhone, so that I can put enough gigs of music on so that I don't need to stream.

Hope this helps,

Well I always enjoy reading your articles Ed!

I don't know who's really responsible that things got worse but from my personnal experience it definitely got worse. I live in France, and over the last few years it has become really hard to buy records- digital or physical. It's almost impossible to buy music from ITunes until ITunes releases it in my country. Sometimes it's a year after the record was released in the US. I mean this concerns mainly Americana artists but it's not like I listen to Justin Bieber. To buy physical copies you need to wait (and hope) that a big record store import them and then the prices are prohibited !! (twice the price sometimes and the artist won't earn any extra money you know) Or wait that the artist find a distributor. The other solution is to order them online. but then the shipping price is also very expensive unless you use the regular postal service and take the risk that your package will be opened by customs and charge you extra money or even hold on to it. (This wasn't the case before but now it happens a lot). And NOW credit cards from outside of the US are denied on kickstarter!  So I'm willing to buy records and support the music industry but they (whoever "they" is) are not helping! Sorry for the digression but I needed to get it out of my system I guess. 

Also I'm a little bit ashamed to admit that I didn't know the work of Peter Guralnick. But as soon as I'm done with the pile of books sitting on my night table I will right that wrong. 

@Emilien: As it sometimes is, we Americans tend to look at things as if the rest of the world is only a week's vacation destination. I had no idea of the challenges of buying and selling outside of our own virtual four walls here. To be honest, I thought that Europe and the rest of the world was way ahead of us with streaming and never even considered that some folks wanted to actually own something anymore.

An interesting side note, last night I was involved in a conversation about how many Americana-type artists can't get a booking here in the States for more than a few hundred dollars a show, but seem to be able to make a nice(r) living touring throughout Europe, the UK and Scandanavia. So somebody must be hearing them somewhere. 

Thanks for reading and commenting (to you and everyone else)...nice to know after all the changes here at No Dep that people are still alive and well. 

it's true that bands touring in Europe are usually really happy with the way they are treated. And it's not only a matter of money, I think. They often get free frood and shelter. Except maybe for the UK, the number of shows is not as high as in the US, so I suppose "we" make them count. 


I've only lived in France a couple of years so I don't know how things have changed.  You could try taking out a sub to emusic who tened to be fairly borrder-neutral.  I've found Fargo and Gilbert Joseph are pretty good for pricing and availability while a lot of the US record labels (Yep Roc and Signature for two, also CD Baby do offshore download sales° as well as a number of artists own sites.  I try and buy from touring artisits where possible, but I'm based in Paris so that might be easier.  Recently I was trying to track down a liove Alejandro Escovedo album whih had passed my radar and finally got it via Virgin France online.  On the taxes front, my experience with La Poste so far has been excellent - the only time I got hit for VAT was when the shipper sent UPS.  If you use paypal you can back that into your credit card.


Thanks for the tips! 


Hard to believe it's been 13 years since the iPod came out -- I found my first-generation one (now a brick, of course) in a closet the other day and did a lot of sittin' and thinkin' about how much it changed my music-listening life. I was working in Washington DC at the time and commuting by train, and I went from hauling a CD walkman and 3-4 CDs around every day to having everything on this little white box. Whoa! I'd forgotten that it wasn't a huge hit right away (I bought that first-generation iPod off a friend when he upgraded to the click-wheel, so I was in no way an early adopter). Kind of amazing to think about that little gadget's life story. 

Thanks for the walk down (a well-soundtracked) memory lane, Ed!

I've used my iPod all day every day at work for years, plugged into my Bose music dock.  Those are two purchases I've NEVER regretted making as they have made my life so much better. 

For those looking to find one, check eBay as there are tons still available there, but check seller ratings and read the descriptions carefully.

I've never owned the iPod Classic. I've had (and still have though seldome use) an iPod Shuffle and a 50GB Microsoft Zune (no longer supported).  While I've always wanted the Classic with its at-one-time breathtaking size, I couldn't justify the expense when it wanted it the most.  Now that I can afford one, my need for it has passed.  I now carry my entire music collection that I can stream from my phone (Moto X) via Amazon Prime Music.  In addition, Prime offers some albums for free that get added to your collection just as if you had purchased or ripped the music from a CD.  It costs $20/year for unlimited space (yes, unlimited). Not all their music is free and it is not clear how they decide what to offer for free.  It's hit or miss whether the one I just gotta have at that moment is going to be free, but I got some great Corb Lund, Jason Isbell, and Old Crow very recently. 

I am an anachronistic old-timer who embraces technology, but I won't steal or download pirated music.  I still pay for music, though usually by download (though I love a good LP --- my latest, Huray for the Riff Raff --- especially when they come with a free download.)  But the bottom line for me as to the iPod Classic, while I still would love to have one, I don't really need it.   I  still have an unlimited data plan and get good cell reception.  So why would I limit myself to 160GB of music when I can carry around 1.2TB (or more; my collection expands weekly)?  I just can't get too teary-eyed over the loss of the iPod Classic.


Ed,  Great Broadside! 

I own two 160 GB iPods and use them to hold my cd collection and as a back up to each other and my music library on my work and garage PC.  I have NEVER purchased a song online from iTunes or elsewhere. All 15,000 or so songs currently in my library are from CD's that I own and that I continue to purchase at an average rate of 3 or so a week. 

I really like the iPods and am pretty confident that they will do the job they were made to do for a good long time. I use iTunes as my library on my pC as its a good form for looking up and playing songs (which I do my entire work day). What I very much  dislike is the whole Apple proprietary software deal. As I said I bought and paid for all the CD's in my library and Apple limits what I can do with them in terms of moving them from device to device and the like. 

I suppose I could put some music on my iPhone but I'm ok with carrying two different devices, the thought of that being burdensome makes me chuckle. When I travel (hunt and fish) I would be lost without my iPod and a good book but I could do without my phone,,,, I guess it's all about priorities.



Geez, I too am saddened by the loss of the Ipod classic. Like others, it is a critical component of my music listening. I burned every CD I owned--several hundred--and now they all exist on my Ipod. I plug it into my stereo, into my car, and even occasionally use it with headphones. I subscribe to Emusic and download 2-3 albums a month--they all go on my Ipod. I guess I'm wondering what to do when my Ipod is full? Perhaps this has nothing to do with the demise of the Classic--it is a problem that will be forthcoming someday.  What are the solutions to a never ending expansion of your music library over the course of a lifetime? Graph it out--the curve probably won't be exponential, but will be continously on the rise. Music ad infinitum? How?

I'm constantly having to remove stuff from my iPod to make room for new stuff.  Perhaps WEB has the right idea - use two iPods!

Two iPODS = four speakers! I think you gentlemen just invented Podrophenia!!!

Podrophenia I like it!  And it was quite by accident much like: post it notes, valcro, and X rays

I see big bucks in our future!  hahaha



Can someone tell me why I'm seeing two big empty spaces above? Above the paragraph that begins "Before I leave this subject..." and at the end of the piece. I've looked in both Chrome & Safari on my Mac running Mavericks, and can't figure it out...

And Ed, it's relatively easy to install new drives and/or batteries in the Classic iPods. Larger drives can be found on ebay and elsewhere.

Thanks for the post!


 The display is the same on my page, I assume that they are clips that Ed inserted in his post that for some reason do not load on our page. Are you using google chrome?  Perhaps that is the reason?  Can anyone shed a little light on this?



As a result of reading Guralnick's two bios of Elvis I am the modest holder of a PhD in Elvis.  Outstanding reading!

Ed here. Two videos which were here are gone. I'll attempt to restore but the Nodep team is at FreshGrass  I've noticed some odd behavior throughout the site today since I upgraded to iOS 8. But that has nothing to do with the videos evaporating.


Thanks Ed! Maybe just post the links??

They should be back now. I see that the development team modified the tools used to post media and in the process it looks like anything using the old format has been zapped. I've left them a message but we'll see if it effected just this post or all.

Kim is so practical. I have about 2,000 vinyls albums, 1,000 singles, 100 cassettes, 2,000 CDs, one DCC, and about 150GB of MP3s. About 95% of my recorded music time is spent with Spotify. But I still panicked when I realised I mightn't be able to replace my beloved but quite dead 2nd Gen iPod Classic. I have a 7th and Final Gen in transit from a store in Darwin, about 2500 miles away.