Music

The Music Business in America’s Prisons

Like everyone else, inmates in America’s correctional facilities enjoy their music.  Spin takes a look at what they’re listening to–and how.  (Thanks to John for the link.)

If you’ve got to go to prison, you could do a lot worse than the Idaho Correctional Institution in Orofino. The 574-inmate facility is tucked into a picturesque valley on the state’s rugged northern panhandle, along the trail once blazed by Lewis and Clark. The thin window slits in many of the general-population cells on the prison’s newest section — called “A Block” — offer views of the surrounding green-brown foothills and pine forests, as well as the crisp rushing waters of the Clearwater River, a world-renowned fly-fishing spot.

Despite its northerly latitude and the snow-capped mountains not too far in the distance, the weather here remains reasonably mild year-round. Minimum-security offenders have opportunities to get outside the 15-foot razor-wire-topped chain-link fences that surround the prison’s perimeter by working on inmate firefighting crews and doing roadwork and construction jobs nearby. It’s also one of a growing number of American correctional facilities where prisoners have access to a digital library of millions of songs.

But make no mistake: This is not some country club for exiled Wall Street barons.

Continue reading.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38542 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

Let us know what you think!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.