HEY! WHERE DID MY MONEY GO?: September 2012

My Marketing of Recorded Music professor likes to talk about how weird we music business students are. “Oh, you spend money on music. Oh, you need music.” That sort of thing. And it’s true, we are very weird folk. But I like to think that I have an advantage in this business because I act more like a fan than I do a business person– and that’s an important outlook that people “in the business” tend to forget.

Most of my music collection is illegally downloaded (from Napster, in 5th grade). I download a lot of music legally and then I don’t listen to most of it again. I buy music physically (though more vinyl than CDs, which I guess make me weird compared to the average listener). I burn CDs for my friends (usually playlists rather than full CDs). I make some impulse buys, but I also don’t have a ton of spending money. I adore Spotify– but I also pay $10/month for it.

So I thought I’d be interesting to keep tabs on how much money I spend on music, as both someone who loathes buying music and someone who knows better. Keep in mind that this won’t count anything I don’t spend money on so it won’t contain any of the following:

  • Songs posted on music blogs
  • Songs/albums offered for free through Bandcamp, NoiseTrade, artists’ websites, etc
  • Bootleg remixes and mash-ups
  • Albums given to me by a record label I work for or songs burned for me by a friend
  • Free shows
  • Tickets paid for by someone else
  • Shows for which I was placed on the guest list

So this is monthly music acquisition, not consumption. Alright, here’s the breakdown for September 2012:

Digital Download

  • MS MR – Candy Bar Creep Show EP – $2.99
  • Ke$ha – Warrior LP – $11.99 (preorder, only have “Die Young” until release date)


  • N/A


  • Turbo Fruits – Butter LP – $13.99 (limited edition pot butter autographed record)
  • Jenny Owen Youngs – An Unwavering Band of Light LP – $15.00 (limited edition white double-LP vinyl, on sale)
  • D. Watusi – Dark Nights LP – $10.00 (limited edition promo copy)
  • T. Segall & Seth Sutton b/w D.Watusi – “I Hate the Kids” b/w “Needles In The Eye” 7″ – $5.00 (“secret” 7″ sold only at Nashville’s Dead’s 3rd Birthday Party)
  • The xx – Coexist LP – $23.00 (deluxe version: limited 180 gm, gatefold sleeve, with 12″ booklet and digital download)
  • Fox Fun – “Squawk” b/w “Smile” 7″ – $7.00 (limited yellow edition)


  • Passion Pit – $25.00


  • Spotify – $10.00

Total: $123.97

Now do me a favor and give me some context in the comments below. Is that high or low? How much money do you spend on music per month?



  1. I spend roughly $75 to $125 on live shows every month. I pay $10/month for Spotify, so I don’t really spend cash on downloads. I’ll get into vinyl one of these days, so my spending will go up from there.

    So as superfans/weirdos, we spend similar amounts. When compared to the average person, I’m sure we invest more.

    1. Ah, I forgot Spotify, gonna have to add that in…

      It’s interesting to me that you spend so much more on live shows. Even if I paid for all the shows I go to, it wouldn’t come close. Is that because you go to a lot of shows, larger ones than me (I’m a basement dweller), or both?

      Thanks for sharing, Wes!

  2. I thought I spent a lot on music but you blow my average OUT OF THE WATER! I spend the majority of my money on live shows and digital downloads (If I had a vinyl player, I have a feeling my spending would increase significantly). However, if music is your passion and you enjoy it, then I don’t see a problem with it. There are much worse hobbies you could be partaking in.

  3. […] to social campaigns, as well as the words “limited edition.” For instance, in September, I bought MS MR’s Candy Bar Creep Show EP and The xx’s Coexist LP. What this list […]

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