Listening to bands that insist on using proprietary technology

So, there’s a band your friend tells you about – maybe they’re the manager – and the band has a new release out. It’s on a major label, but you’re happy to overlook that for your friend.
There’s a problem though – the CD is in the stores, there might even be a vinyl version, but the only digital service offering it is iTunes, which using Digital Restrictions Management and is proprietary software. So, what do you do? You want to hear it, because even though your friend recommended it, you don’t want to pay out for a CD or record you don’t like, after all, if you’re going to give money to a major label to support your friend’s band, it’s going to be for something you at least want to listen to, right?
But thankfully, they’ve put the video on YouTube. Of course they have! Everyone uses YouTube, right? Well, almost everyone, it would seem… hell, we’ve almost got Gnash working with YouTube.
So, here’s how you do it. This works on GNU/Linux, but should work on Mac OS X or Windows, too.

  • youtube-dl – a shell script for downloading from YouTube. Requires Python.
  • mplayer – the ubiquitous media player.

Here’s how to do it…

  1. Go to YouTube – find the video.
  2. Copy the URL – ie.
  3. Open up a Terminal
  4. Type/paste: youtube-dl
  5. Type/paste: mplayer -dumpaudio RQzkU0pqi3E.flv -dumpfile track.mp3

Voila! You have a slightly shitty quality mp3 file of the video. Have a listen, and then buy the CD or Vinyl. If you’re buying in the UK, you should know that HMV will sell you a CD over the web, and have it count toward chart position.
Of course, this would all be much idea if more people would support eMusic.