I'm very much a believer in home entertainment systems," notes Ron Alexenburg, president of Infinity Records, distributed through MCA Distributing Corp. "I have an immense feeling for the success of the video disc, providing that the quality of the merchandise meets or surpasses everyone's expectations. Many people expect it to be similar to a video tape and it's not. I've seen the MCA Pioneer unit and I'm astounded by the clarity and excited by Ron Alexenburg the professionalism of the sound.
"I think that if the unit is marketed properly, which I have every reason to believe it will, in both the retail record stores as well as in the audio outlets, it will do very well. The cost is much less and the playback is so terrific, and being that it is so easy to hook up through the stereo system in your home, you may be able to spend an evening in your home watching a movie and seeing it more clearly than you would on TV or a video tape."
Alexenburg also sees DiscoVision as a promotional tool for the record industry. "I think that it will obviously be used as a promotional device, but it is an expensive one to put together. We would look to take artists that don't tour that frequently,like a Steely Dan or a Carly Simon, and record them on a video disc in concert or whatever, if they feel comfortable doing it. I think it's a terribly exciting idea and that people would buy it."
Alexenburg added, "I don't think that it is as easy to do a video tape on an artist's performance. Again, I am not that technically into the process of reducing the performance from film into video disc, and how long it takes, whereas video tape is immediate. It will be more or less an addition to what we are presently doing with video tapes, cassettes and records. But, I do think it will be very much a part of the retailers and rackjobbers daily life as well as that of the record executive.
"We've made a label presentation which will be shown at the NARM convention which talks about all of the artists on the label. Right now, it basically focusses on superstar artists, but there are plans to extend that in the future."
The label exec believes that DiscoVision is a logical extension in the home entertainment trend. "I feel that music is a positive escape for many people. There are films and records for virtually every mood and emotion known to us. And the video disc is another way for people to spend more time in their own homes enjoying what they want to."
Summarizing, Alexenburg notes, "I think that the music business will be working together this time to bring this home to the consumer. The sooner we all work together, the better off the music business is going to be.
Year of the Soundtrack
"This has been the year of the soundtrack. People in records want to be in movies and people in movies want to be in records. Now, we'll be in all of them.
"I'm very excited to be a part of the MCA family that is launching this project."