[Smt-talk] Jonathan Kramer's "The Time of Music"

gzar at mail2.gis.net gzar at mail2.gis.net
Tue Aug 2 10:04:38 PDT 2011

Last year I noticed on Amazon a long out-of-print book I wanted (by 
Alexandra Pierce), but for a much-too-high, triple-digit price. I 
could not imagine it was a true market price (especially as this was 
not an antiquarian item), so I somehow became inspired to write the 
seller, directly, a sincere note asking whether he might revise the 
price to something closer to what in my experience academic folks 
like me might expect to pay for such a book. I added that I had had 
known the author personally, which I think didn't hurt.

The seller was happy to have heard from me, responsive to our shared 
connection with the book, and genuinely willing to consider my 
suggestion about the price. We made a sale, and, needless to say, I 
was pleasantly surprised at the outcome.

Now that our List has been told something about how such 
astonishingly unrealistic sales prices might arise, I could imagine 
any such seller might be happy to hear from someone personally, not 
only to respond to a possible heartfelt plea, but maybe more to the 
point, to be able to unload, even if at "only" a reasonable price, an 
item whose listed price would likely never result in a sale.

At the least, the seller might realize why the item is not moving and 
lower the price to something that is more marketable -- even if still 
not perhaps for one's own budget...

Gerald Zaritzky
Faculty, Department of Music Theory
New England Conservatory of Music
290 Huntington Avenue (Room JH 325)
Boston, Massachusetts 02115  USA
617-585-1373; fax: 617-585-1301
gerald.zaritzky at necmusic.edu

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