image Dateline: Brooklyn. Yeah, you’ve heard all sorts of stories about hard drive failure rates and why you should back up. But here’s a new one: someone might steal your hard drive, while it’s plugged into your laptop, in the middle of a set, as happened to Matthew Dear earlier this month.. Given that hard drives are worth about ten bucks each at this point, we can only assume this is some twisted fan crime. I’d like to respond:

Yo! Earth to useless hipster: this is New York. We used to have real crime here, not you jacking someone’s external FireWire box. Jeez.

I’m a little late on this — the crime took place April 4 at Galapagos’ Bunker party (formerly at Tonic).

Matthew Dear’s harddrive was stolen @ Galapagos [Brooklyn Vegan, via Dance Tracks Digital]

Some jerk in comments on DTD says, "Who cares hwo mucgh creativity is therein blippy tracks that lst 45 minutes." [sic] Aside from Pete’s complete inability to spell the easiest words in the English language, he’s risking some major bad karma by writing that — well, unless he plays with theft-proof wax cylinders, that is.

For reasons that escape me, this whole incident sends the Brooklyn Vegan rock-loving crowd into a frenzy of anti-computer, pro-guitar rhetoric. Yes, that must be it — God Himself took Matthew’s hard drive, because playing music out of computers is the Devil’s work. The classic “FireWire Smite” move.

“The storage device that you just removed was not properly put away before being stolen from this computer. Your set may have been damaged or lost. In the future, please play a banjo, or risk eternal damnation. Greetings, Professor Falken. Shall we play a game?”

  • http://productionmedia.co.uk flunky

    mmm yes.. it could be like John Cage's "4'33"

    The sound of the missing firewire harddrive…

  • Axel

    Equipment thiefs deserve to get their hands cut off, as simple as that. This applies to any kind of gear, not only Moog synths from Messe booths.

  • lematt

    i think it's pretty funny though…

    it shows the "digital deejaying" possible limitations :)

  • dead_red_eyes

    I don't get how this is funny to anyone, other than haters. It's fucking sick that someone stole a piece of equipment off of the stage while the guy was performing.

    I can't believe all the comments from this blog post too:

    http://www.brooklynvegan.com/archives/2008/04/mat

    So many haters, it's ridiculous.

  • http://www.myspace.com/electrodelive electrode

    i'm not sure if this is an good example of limitations of digital djing, because i have heard so many times that djs got stolen their vynils, or even whole record bag and this is maybe the first time when digital dj lost his tracks :)

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  • http://www.createdigitalmusic.com Peter Kirn

    Wow, bizarre… yeah, I don't quite understand that, either. I mean, it makes an excellent argument for yodeling — that doesn't require any equipment at all, even a microphone, so that would certainly be theft-proof. Not clear on their point, other than they hate computer musicians in general.

  • http://www.jaymis.com Jaymis Loveday

    From the brooklynvegan comments.

    how is removing the drive even possible while playing live…he must have been away from his macbook pro long enough for someone to remove the keyboard….unless of course this picture is deceiving and he actually has a macbook with a more easily accessible drive

    … Just beautiful.

  • jp

    i don't get the whole anit-computer, pro-guitar rhetoric. how many rock bands, both well-known and not – have NOT had their gear stolen at some point? seems to me it happens regardless of the music you play.

  • bliss

    Hmm… I wonder if many of the negative comments to this issue on the Brooklyn Vegan website were made by vegans. Personally, I've never associated acoustic instruments and vinyl with milk and cheese. Maybe wine and cheese.

    Let this story be a warning to all electronic musicians. Your meaty hard drives are at risk of being abducted and released back into the wild.

  • http://www.digitallofi.com/words digital lofi

    jp is right – not too long ago there was a rash of equipment thefts that got a few touring bands, including Camper Van Beethoven and I believe the Decemberists. Granted, these weren't at the shows, but I'm sure gear goes missing from live venues across the globe every night – stomp boxes, mics, amps.

    People sure can suck.

  • Sargint Milk

    Let's go beyond the legality of equipment theft. Stealing from another person is a severe breach of humanity, we all know this. Getting past that, there is a difference between having your Moog stolen and having your data stolen. No matter how much you may love your Moog, it is still a piece of machinery. The data is a piece of your soul. It is intangible and there is no way to replace it. There can be no viable path of success in stealing someone's drive, aside from getting an mp3 folder which is not really a success because the ease of acquiring mp3's negates theft does it not; the rest is unusable and is pretty much on par with kidnapping. The most lucrative endeavor from stealing Dear's data, would be to ransom the stuff back. We all know how that ends, so this was clearly the act of an inept criminal, not a savvy businessman carefully thinking things through.

  • http://www.createdigitalmusic.com Peter Kirn

    @Sargint — absolutely, absolutely true. But that's another reason why data is great, that is, that you can back up this piece of your soul and have it off in the cloud, whereas you can't back up a Moog. That's why I'm really encouraged by these online data services. They're totally essential to a musician, because you don't have to worry about carrying the backup. Doesn't excuse this incident — and likely won't help you through that particular set — but nonetheless, I'm eager to watch those things develop.

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