PonoMusic was founded by Neil Young in 2011 to create a movement to revive the soul of music, and to recreate the vinyl experience in the digital realm.
PonoMusic is about a lot of things, but first and foremost it’s about the connection between the artists and their fans – the music, and the people who can’t live without it. We see Kickstarter as a way to strengthen those bonds by letting musicians and music fans get behind the thing that matters most to all of us – the music itself.
“Pono” is Hawaiian for righteous. What righteous means to our founder Neil Young is honoring the artist’s intention, and the soul of music. That’s why he’s been on a quest, for a few years now, to revive the magic that has been squeezed out of digital music. In the process of making music more convenient – easier to download, and more portable – we have sacrificed the emotional impact that only higher quality music can deliver. However, the world has changed in the last 10 years – technology has solved some of the underlying problems that forced that tradeoff. You no longer have to choose between quality and convenience when listening to music – you can have both. This is the fundamental idea behind PonoMusic.
In the video, Young discusses his idea of “underwater listening,” comparing a MP3 to listening to music 1,000 feet underwater and a Compact Disc 200 feet underwater. With Warner Music Group converting thousands of albums from its archives to the Pono-friendly 192 kHz and 24-bit sound, Young contends that listening to music at 192kHz is like being above sea level. “This is like rescuing it,” he tells Beck later in the video. “It’s an artist-driven movement to take it back.”
Visit the Kickstarter page here.
I wrote about Pono earlier in this blog posting about the future of music.