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 Post subject: Whatever happened to MUZAK?
PostPosted: Nov Mon 01, 2010 8:34 pm 
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Does anyone know history of Muzak. I recall in the 60's they had music in a lot of office buildings.

Harold


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Mon 01, 2010 8:37 pm 
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They are still around See-

http://www.muzak.com/

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Mon 01, 2010 11:51 pm 
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Yep...I see their trucks on the road once in a while.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 12:42 am 
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Out of curiosity, is it still carried on the so-called "storecast" subcarrier on FM stations?
Or is it all cable now?
Mark D.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 1:19 am 
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He went back to Kazakhstan.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 1:21 am 
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I am just wondering if they play the mindless tuneless stuff that was called elevator music back in the day. Now it seems it's not much different than Sirius or XM.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 1:52 am 
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The store I worked in used Musak. There was this little box that I believe was hooked up to a cable or something and there were lots of stations. All of the stations were of different genres. Ours played a generic mix of top 40 songs -mostly pop and pop country with a few rock and roll songs thrown in. Nothing offensive. It was all pretty upbeat stuff probably meant to make shoppers feel good about shopping.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 2:16 am 
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bobwilson1977 wrote:
The store I worked in used Musak. There was this little box that I believe was hooked up to a cable or something and there were lots of stations. All of the stations were of different genres. Ours played a generic mix of top 40 songs -mostly pop and pop country with a few rock and roll songs thrown in. Nothing offensive. It was all pretty upbeat stuff probably meant to make shoppers feel good about shopping.


Yes, and it worked. I had fun Christmas shopping when I was kid. Even adults were happy and joyous.

Now........Now! you have to give them "uppers" at the door when they come in and get out of their way when they leave.

The spirit of the Seasons has been killed by Dr. Von Helsing or Sam Walton.

Ho Ho Ho and a bottle of Schnapps.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 2:23 am 
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They are using satellite and mailed CDs now. Maybe still some FM sub-carrier broadcasts, but it's unlikely. I was a bench tech for a Muzak franchise for about 5 years, and repaired many amps and receivers, as well as tape machines, intercoms, and small PBX systems that used Strowger relays. Went through many burnishing tools. Still have some Browning receivers that use PP 6V6s, and one has a double-cascode front end using two 12AT7s for fringe reception. Two IF amps, two limiters, and a discriminator circuit. Nice radios, but they need to be re-caped again. Only have one crystal for 105.9, so not too much to listen to.
Kevin

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 4:15 am 
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I'm pretty sure I read somewhere that muzak used to incorporate "subliminal"messages in their programs for an extra fee to the store owner. Hidden messages like "I will not steal" etc were on on record as dropping shoplifting in the stores that used them by drastic numbers. I think this was a 1970's maybe early 80's thing.
Anyone else "hear" of this ? :P


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 4:55 am 
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I worked for Muzak off and on for YEARS in Los Angeles. First of all, NO they didn't use subliminal messages. In fact I helped upgrade the studio where the recordings were made. One guy did ALL of the recordings. They had thousands of 101 strings!
Yeah, mostly it's satellite now, but I'm sure there are some sub-carrier systems still in place.
I can't count the times I've pulled the top off of a McMartin receiver, got out the alignment tool and meter for a quick field alignment. Or replaced an antenna on a 40 story building. Those buildings SWAY in the wind. I'm not talking a couple of inches, I mean a couple of FEET! Scary!
Terry


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 1:14 pm 
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Speaking of elevator music - how many remember elevator operators sitting on those little fold-down chairs.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 2:19 pm 
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I rode such elevators in the old Battery Park Hotel in Asheville, NC, in the mid-1960's.

Brings back some memories!

:wink: Larry

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 2:44 pm 
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Ok, I guess it wasn't part of the muzak recordings, but and add on "black box"?

Copied from the www.

Did you know that some department stores and supermarkets actually played subliminal messages under the Muzak or background music to reduce shop-lifting?

An article in TIME magazine in 1979, titled, 'Secret Voices', reported that nearly 50 department stores in the U.S. and Canada were using subliminal messages in the music systems to reduce shoplifting and employee theft. One East Coast chain was reported to have reduced theft by 37%, amounting to the phenomenal savings of $600,000 over a nine-month period.

A similar story in the WALL STREET JOURNAL in 1980 stated the installation of a subliminal message system in a New Orleans supermarket accounted for a drop in pilferage loss from almost $50,000 per six months to the astounding figure of less than $13,000 – an all time low! Cashier shortages dropped from $125 per week to less than $10 per week. Subliminal messages found to be effective were statements like, "I take a great deal of pride in being honest. I will not steal. I am honest."


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 4:25 pm 
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Started in Cleveland, Ohio as a partnership between Bill O'Neil (President of General Tire in Akron) and a Cleveland gentleman whose name has escaped my memory cell at this moment (another Bill, I think). In recent years they have gone through a few owner changes and I believe that they are now based out of one of the Carolina's.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 4:44 pm 
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Location: Oswego, NY, USA
E. A. Link, of Binghamton NY, long before WWI (The Great War) had accounts with many larger department stores that installed his company's "elevator music" system. It consisted of the Link automatic player pianos that all played the same roll selections on all the floors, so when customers went up or down, they had the same music from all the pianos. The control piano had an 8hr endless-loop paper roll which could be changed between shifts, with a 90 plus conductor electric cable that sent the songs to the other pianos thru the store. With WWI, Link used the player parts & designs to build the first flight simulators for the military. That's why the first simulators look familiar to player piano rebuilders. So, the general idea behind Muzak goes back in time.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Tue 02, 2010 4:50 pm 
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I found the following on Wikipedia
"...in 1962 Vicary admitted to lying about the experiment and falsifying the results, the story itself being a marketing ploy.[24][25] An identical experiment conducted by Dr. Henry Link showed no increase in cola or popcorn sales.[23] A trip to Fort Lee, where the first experiment was alleged to have taken place, would have shown straight away that the small cinema there couldn't possibly have had 45,699 visitors through its doors in the space of six weeks. This has led people to believe that Vicary actually did not conduct his experiment at all.[23]he practice of subliminal advertising was subsequently banned in the United Kingdom and Australia,[21] and by American networks and the National Association of Broadcasters in 1958."[23]

"But in 1958, Vicary conducted a television test in which he flashed the message "telephone now" hundreds of times during a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation program, and found no noticeable increase in telephone calls".[20]

So even if subliminal messages WERE inserted, the effect would, at best, be minimal.
Sure it was tried, but the expense involved FAR outweighed the results. I really don't think it was used after the 70's and would need some substantive proof that it was.
Urban legend?
Terry


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Sat 06, 2010 1:46 pm 
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Location: chancellor al.
I heard an interesting story in Birmingham in '62. Seems Muzak was installing sound sys. in a new office bldg. and had speakers up and had their wiring run to a central spot (equip. room?) . The local IBEW had tried to get the wiring job; even that they were entitled to it but Muzak said nothing doing. During the week end all the speaker lines got accidentally conn. to 115VAC. Mon. the Muzak folks found all their speakers fried. No one ever knew how that happened, so I was told.

Harold


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Sat 06, 2010 2:35 pm 
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Shanghai Jack wrote:
Speaking of elevator music - how many remember elevator operators sitting on those little fold-down chairs.


Still have 'em in a few buildings in Chicago.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Nov Sat 06, 2010 2:57 pm 
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Working in grocery stores daily I have noticed that Walmart and Target do not have any music playing. Kroger does and in the mornings, for some reason, it's either classic hard rock or even classic punk. Yes PUNK!! Ramones with Blitzkrieg bop and The Clash. In the afternoons to evenings the music selections change to a more mainstream. I heard The Doors strange days the other morning.


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