September 10, 2006

MP3 and Corporate Smarts

Ya'll know I am a Jazzerciser; have been for years. Not as much of late, since I've discovered yoga, but I still go once or twice a week. And when I travel for work, I try to find a local class and get some exercise; its always been a positive experience.

Now, Jazzercise works like this. Instructors are certified, pay a fee to buy in to the program, and pay a percentage of their gross to corporate. In exchange, they get the brand, they get scripted routines. They get these on DVD (formerly VHS) and after learning the routines, they teach them using music on CD's (formerly cassette tapes). Anyone who has been to a class has seen an instructor fumbling with the tape player or CD player between songs.

Seems like a perfect application for an MP3 player, eh? Instead of buying full CD's or cassettes, or producing and distributing compilations, one could simply license the MP3 and send it out via email. An instructor could burn a particular set onto an MP3 player and not have to mess around between songs. It all makes way too much sense.

A couple of years back, I went to a class in Chicago where the instructor was doing just that. I talked with her afterwards about the positive application of technology, and she was kind of lowkey about it (actually she asked me not to talk about it to my local insructor) - apparently, it was official Jazzercise policy not to use such devices.

Our substitute on Saturday had one, and I spoke with her about it. Apparently, Jazzercise corporate has come around, and MP3's are now an official distribution tool. I think she even had a pink Jazzercise cover for her IPOD. Nice to see a corporation coming around on something like this.

Oh, and here's the latest Jazzercise set list. Never fails to amaze me how Jazzercise has the hits before they become hits. Its almost as if somebody is programming the songs for chart pop success....and feeding the music to Jazzercise weeks or months in advance.....

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