“Al! How’s the man? Are you ready to knock ’em dead tonight with that acceptance speech I wrote for you?”

“That’s why I’m calling. I want to make a few changes.”

“Changes? But it’s a killer speech.”

“I know it is, Phil. But I’ve been travelling all over the country the last few days, you know, checking out the heartbeat of America. I’ve been listening to the people.”

“People? What are you doing talking to the people, for chrissakes? You know how that always gets you into trouble.”

“But I’ve been talking to some great Americans, Phil. People like Bob Dylan and James Cotton.”


“Well, I think I have a handle on this Napster thing.”


“It’s really important. Dr. Dre says it could be the death of music, and you know how I always listen to men of science. Especially medical men.”

“Dr. Dre?”

“Yeah. So me, Tipper and the doctor sat up all night hashing things out. Anyway, to make a long story short, I came with up with an entirely new music distribution plan. Wanna hear it?”

“Al, we really should talk about…”

“We start with the record companies signing promising new talent. Pretty original, eh?”

“About the speech I wrote…”

“Of course, they will also get some established acts like Green Day and Elton John. Then they’ll gather all the artists they’ve signed and put them into rooms with all the latest hi-tech devices like microphones and recording machines, just like the TV studios.”


“And they’ll make these things called CDs. And the CDs will be sold through economic retail centers called record stores.”

“This is your plan?”

“Pretty nifty, eh? If kids can just walk down to the store and buy music by viperHouse and Barenaked Ladies, they won’t have to use Napster.”

“Al, maybe we should look at that original speech.”

“I gotta tell you, Phil, this could be the best idea I’ve ever had. It’s a win-win situation. The kids get all the music they can pay for, and the record labels get their money. Besides, after what I did to the labels, I thought I could make it up to them and perhaps even tap into the entertainment vote. Maybe get the Levellers or the Pat McGee Band to play at a fundraiser.”

“Yeah, or even Quiet Riot. Er, wait a minute, Al. What do you mean, ‘make it up to the labels?'”

“You know, for inventing the Internet.”

“I don’t think you want to mention that…”

“Gotta run, Phil. I’m going over to Dr. Dre’s house. He’s going to help me work on my speech and he has some really swell rhymes to jazz up my delivery. Will you be watching the speech tonight, Phil?