Every once in a while, you come across a company that's just really cool. Online CD trading outfit LaLa.com is one such company. Not only does LaLa pay registered artists a percentage of the income generated from CD trades on the site (despite the fact that this is not legally required) and donate unregistered artists' shares to a fund that helps pay for independent musicians' medical insurance, it also revived online radio pioneer WOXY.com and allows users to create and stream massive online playlists--for free. It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy when a company that's a part of an otherwise money-hungry industry gives so much back to the music-loving and music-making community.
Another prime example? Last week, LaLa put on one of many benefit concerts. The event, called Groove Is in the Heart, featured all-star band The Werewolves, whose members come from the Rolling Stones, the Grateful Dead, the Steve Miller Band, and others. Proceeds from the concert will go toward Bay Area children's music programs. Unfortunately, I was unable to attend to show in person, but I did get to listen to LaLa's free online stream of the concert, and the legends put on a good show. Frankly, anything that helps supplement California's underfunded public school system deserves a giant gold star. Way to go, LaLa!