In Wednesday’s (3/19) Seattle Times, Michael Upchurch reports, “The Beatles did it when they started Apple. Macklemore did it, and wound up with a fistful of Grammy Awards. The Seattle Symphony Orchestra is now doing it, too—recording and releasing music on its own label, with the aim of calling the world’s attention to the orchestra’s talent and the distinctive sound characteristic of its home, Benaroya Hall. The first releases on Seattle Symphony Media will be available for download on Tuesday, April 1, and as CDs on Tuesday, April 29. They can be preordered today (March 19). The recordings were made of recent SSO performances of works by Maurice Ravel, Camille Saint-Saëns, George Gershwin, Charles Ives and Henri Dutilleux. Seattle Symphony executive director Simon Woods … explained the forces behind the shifting landscape of recording and distributing music: Big record labels have pulled back from classical music, so the days of exclusive contracts between orchestras and labels are over. Meanwhile, recording technology has grown more affordable and accessible.… ‘We’re controlling, long term, our destiny,’ Woods says, ‘because the catalog of music that we record now will be owned by the symphony and will always be there for the symphony to exploit commercially.’ ”

Posted March 19, 2013