General Feedback/Questions on Audio Lecture Program

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General Feedback/Questions on Audio Lecture Program

Post by Clemsy » Tue Feb 24, 2009 12:30 am

This thread is reserved for any questions or comments associates may have regarding the new Collected Lectures of Joseph Campbell series.

Your feedback is important to us (especially to Mark, David and Phil who have been buzzing like mad behind the scenes to make this happen). Please let us know your thoughts!
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Post by Martin_Weyers » Tue Mar 03, 2009 11:34 pm

Dear associates,

our friend Extebarria startet a new thread called Thank you for lecture series in the Collected Lectures of Joseph Campbell forum. We are more than glad to receive your feedback and support! However, we'd prefer not to create new threads in this forum, for reasons of clarity. (It was our mistake, that we forgot to change the forum settings before opening this forum.)

So, with Extebarria's permission, I deleted the new thread, and will repost the posts from the deleted thread here in the feedback thread.

Martin
Works of art are indeed always products of having been in danger, of having gone to the very end in an experience, to where man can go no further. -- Rainer Maria Rilke
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Post by Martin_Weyers » Tue Mar 03, 2009 11:35 pm

Etxebarria wrote:I bought my first audio lecture yesterday from iTunes and was very pleased. Thank you for this wonderful opportunity to listen to Campbell. The lecture from 1967 was as relevant today as it was then. I look forward to purchasing more.
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Post by Martin_Weyers » Tue Mar 03, 2009 11:35 pm

Stylo wrote:I've never used iTunes to purchase mp3s, and I was curious are these DRM free?
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Post by Martin_Weyers » Tue Mar 03, 2009 11:36 pm

Etxebarria wrote:Dear Stylo,
It was the first time for me using iTunes and it required patience getting it set up but now that I have it I am sure it will be a boon. I made a CD after downloading the lecture and what I liked was being able to relax and listen to it in bed before going to sleep. I don't use a lot of computer gadgets so I can't advise you about using other techie accessories. The artist I work with who was featured last month, Wes Ringstaff, has no clue how to use a computer (another generation) but wants me to buy for him all the lectures available so he can listen while he works in his studio. So the CDs are perfect. That's the beauty of this. With books, forums and downloadable materials it makes it easier to learn and I may become more versed in Campellology. At this point, being so new to Campbell I feel a little inadequate participating in forums.
Regards!
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Post by Martin_Weyers » Tue Mar 03, 2009 11:36 pm

SongwriterPhil wrote:EtxeBarria: Thank you for the feedback-- it's our pleasure to bring these lectures to you!! (let me introduce myself-- I'm Phil Robinson. My record label, Roomful of Sky Records, has been happily helping the JCF bring these lectures into the iTunes age, and it's been the professional treat of a lifetime :-) I'm happy the digital format was convenient for you!

Stylo:

YES, they are DRM free.

All Joseph Campbell lectures are being released with the iTunes PLUS designation, which you can read more about here:
http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2007/05 ... splus.html

(the article is from 2007 when iTunes Plus was launched, and at the time, iTunes Plus offerings ($1.29) were more expensive than typical (DRM-having) iTunes tracks ($0.99). However, since then, iTunes Plus tracks have been reduced to the same $0.99 price!)

Thank you for the feedback, and we're very excited to bring you the full set in the months to come!
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Post by Martin_Weyers » Tue Mar 03, 2009 11:37 pm

Martin_Weyers wrote:Hello Exteberria & Stylo,

I find iTunes very comfortable, and since they offer many iTunes plus files for the same money, it's really a fair deal, and I buy most of my music from iTunes, apart from using it as my standard player since many years. So I'm glad we're using this platform. (And if you really like to spread the good word, you may consider writing a review on iTunes!)

Phil, David, Steve, Bob, Mark and everybody involved in making this possible will love to hear about your support and appreciation. So we really welcome feedback! We thought though, that it's better not to have individual threads in this forum. By accident, the forum settings allowed starting new threads, which was not our intention. I just changed the forum settings, and would like to move this thread (respectively repost your posts) to the general feedback thread -- the sticky one. Thanks for your understanding!
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Hi

Post by gentle71 » Sun Mar 15, 2009 10:47 am

I was wondering what the time schedule is on releasing the lectures. If you release 3 lectures a month - I am going to be a very old man before you get to the third series.
I already have the first series on CD.
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Post by SongwriterPhil » Mon Mar 16, 2009 7:45 am

Hi gentle71,

We are optimistically hoping to be able to release 3 lectures every two months or so:

Each batch of 3 would consist of 2 previously released lectures from Series I, in addition to 1 never-before-released lecture from Series II. (To confuse things even more, we kicked things off with our very first batch consisting of only 3 previously-released lectures from Series I; however, that will not be the norm moving forward).

Releasing in this '2 old : 1 new' ratio each time means that we will be able to bring out the new lectures sooner, while concurrently working our way through the re-release of the old lectures. Although it makes for a slightly awkward release schedule of releasing lectures from both Series I and Series II simultaneously, it enables us, as you point out, to listen to the new stuff before we are indeed 'very old men'!

(Part of the joy of working on a project like this with the Foundation is that I think we are just as eager to bring these talks out and share them with you, as you are to listen to them!)

*And finally, please take this projected release schedule with a grain of salt-- that’s the ideal vision; the operative word here is 'ideal' – the actual release dates may vary depending on a confluence of factors, including funding, the availability of the production team, and iTunes® requirements, etc...
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Post by Ercan Arisoy » Thu Mar 19, 2009 5:48 pm

Thank you,
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Post by ulysses1089 » Wed Mar 25, 2009 7:54 pm

Hello JCF. I've just purchased one of the lectures recently posted on Itunes. They're great but i do have one comment. It seems like Campbell is being cut off, as though i'm not hearing the entirety of the lectures. Are these only excerpts? I would love to be able to hear him speak from start to finish. Sometimes at the end of an episode you can hear him fading out as though he had more to say about an idea. These short lecture clips are great, they're really interesting, but i'd love to hear him really go with an idea and flesh it out. have i spoken incorrectly? Are these lectures complete or somehow abridged?
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Post by SongwriterPhil » Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:52 pm

Hi ulyesses1089,

Good Question! Let me try to answer it for you...

(BTW, I'm Phil-- I work at Roomful of Sky Records, in very close coordination with the JCF, and am serving as release producer for this audio release of The Collected Lectures. Essentially, I oversee any necessary audio editing of the recordings and, when necessary, try to exercise good and reverential judgment when any of the recordings require minor decisions to be made regarding the audio presentation.)

In general, the JCF is dedicated to getting out of Joe's way, and letting his words speak for themselves: we want to present these talks to you in the way that he originally intended and originally delivered them, without introducing ANY distortion, disruption or truncation of his original message. (You might say, we aim to be "transparent to the transcendent" ;-)).

However, sometimes various obstacles to that goal crop up, and we are forced to come up with solutions to them. Some of these obstacles include:

- The limitations of technology - Many of these recordings were made over 40 years ago, on media which is now rapidly decaying, and some portions may have deteriorated over time to the point where they are no longer audible.

- The limitations of what was recorded - Joe's lectures were recorded in many different venues of various acoustics, by many different people of various skill levels, under different circumstances, with different equipment of various levels of quality, etc... It may have been the case, for example, that the tape ran out while Joe was speaking and there was a gap in which a portion of the lecture went unrecorded while the tape was being flipped over. Or it may have been the case where the ending of a lecture simply went unrecorded because there was no replacement media readily available.

- Disruptive sounds/interruptions during the recording process - There may have been cases where someone coughed, or there was a loud noise, etc., which might have rendered a portion of Joe's lecture inaudible. Or there may be instances where Joe himself took a few moments to drink a glass of water, etc..

- The history of the recordings themselves - Sometimes, as in the case with the Series I lectures (which were previously edited and released by HighBridge Audio), some of the recordings may already have been edited to fit the constraints of the media of the day. For example, the first HighBridge releases were on audio casette, which had a limited playing time, and the recordings in some places may have been trimmed to fit the running time.

- Multiple recitations of the same lecture; redundant content - Joe gave many of the same lectures over and over again; however, each time they were slightly different as he never referred to notes and his ideas were constantly evolving. In such a case, we might have one recording of a lecture in which the first half has survived in high quality, and then a recording of the same lecture given at a different time, in which the second half has survived in good quality. In order to release this lecture, we might need to do something like combine the good first half from one recording and then the good second half from the other recording. If however, he gave the same content in a slightly different order each time, such a splicing might result in material being reduntantly given in both halves of the lecture. In a case like this we would edit out the redundant material, while taking pains to not disrupt the flow of Joe's ideas.

~~~

When faced with any of the scenarios described above, preserving Joe's vision and delivering his words to you as he intended them, have been our utmost priorities. We have done our best for the recordings to be smooth and audible listening experiences, and to minimize any jarring experiences of abrupt fade-outs/disruptions, etc., not only in that they are unpleasant, but also insofar as they might undermine your confidence that you are hearing as close to what Joe intended as possible.

The editorial mandate is to be as faithful to Joe's work as possible-- (Actually, the issues involved in the process can be quite similar to those that a book editor might face, as in, for example, when David Kudler assembled Pathways to Bliss or Myths of Light from multiple and various Campbell lectures/notes/etc...)

You can rest assured that the most intense level of care for preserving and presenting Joe's work as he originally intended is a huge part of the core mission of the JCF and a large reason why the JCF exists in the first place.

~~~

I hope that answers your question, as well as it can be answered, at least! If you have any specific questions regarding a particular moment in one of the recordings, feel free to post them here as well.

And thank you for your close attention and care for the lectures, that you would ask in the first place!

-Phil
Last edited by SongwriterPhil on Fri May 07, 2010 5:14 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Post by Bjorn » Tue Apr 14, 2009 7:50 am

I think this new effort is remarkable! And I look forward to listening to the new lectures never before published.

My only concern is with the bitrate, however. The previous release which you could download free from this very site was in poor 128 kbit/s - which was alright since it was free. But what about these newly released mp3s on iTunes? Are they still in 128 or have you decided to up the ante now? I realize that the sound quality of these recordings (some spanning more than 40 years ago) leave a lot to be desired, but since you proudly state on the site that you've been "optimizing them for today's higher quality consumer audio equipment"... I wonder if this also includes a higher bitrate for the listening pleasure?

Blissfully,

Bjorn
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Post by Martin_Weyers » Mon Apr 27, 2009 1:45 pm

Bjorn,

I looked up the bitrate of one of the coming audio lectures and it's 128 kbit/s. I'm not sure if it makes sense to increase the bitrate. Probably it wouldn't help to increase the quality of those lectures, that have been made more than two decades ago, on very simply equipment. This is only a guess though.

I contacted Phil, who's currently between two big performances as a musician, and he will certainly address your question more professionally than I can, as soon as he has a minute. Thanks for your partience!
Works of art are indeed always products of having been in danger, of having gone to the very end in an experience, to where man can go no further. -- Rainer Maria Rilke
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Post by Bjorn » Mon Apr 27, 2009 1:59 pm

Martin,

thank you for your reply.

I believe 128 kbt/s is too small! It will undoubtedly make the recording sound less satisfying than it should. Of course, a higher bitrate will also increase the size of the digital mp3 file, but in this day and age with broadband and ADSL that is no concern.

Because of all the efforts you put down in this exclusive project, why settle for such a low bitrate - when you can easily increase it for the benefit of all.

Looking forward to reading Phil's comments.
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