Remember the first iPod? It was a thing. It held 5GB of music and was the size of a deck of playing cards. And there was no iTunes Store. The music industry was angry at Apple, worried that Steve Jobs wanted everyone to pirate CDs so he could sell us hardware. It was a whole big thing, but journalist Nobuyuki Hayashi reminded us of a tidbit I’d completely forgotten about. Apple sent out iPods to many journalists. Those iPods had music on them—20 albums worth chosen specifically and deliberately by Steve Jobs and the iPod team. And in an effort to show the music industry Apple was their ally, each of those iPods came with those 20 albums on CD. Mr. Hayashi recently found his bundle of CDs. He wrote an interesting post about it, including a list of all 20 albums. Spoiler, there’s a Dylan album, two Beatles albums, Nirvana, Bob Marley, Yo-Yo Ma, the Dave Brubek Quartet, a soundtrack, and more. It’s a fun snapshot look at an age that was radically different than the one we take for granted today.
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