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Delays with McCartney RAM Mono Vinyl from paulmccartney.com

Paul McCartney / Ram / 5-Disc Deluxe Reissue Track listing and details

Mono Vinyl delays via paulmccartney.com

Some fans who have ordered the limited edition mono vinyl edition of Paul McCartney‘s RAM reissue are frustratingly still waiting for their order to ship.

Topspin Media, who manage the physical and digital fulfilment for McCartney’s website, seem to be affected particularly badly with orders still pending.

When pre-ordering, fans were promised that the mono vinyl RAM would be delivered “on or before 22 May 2012″ but superdeluxeedition.com are amongst those whose order for this vinyl is still PENDING 16 days after the release date!

Brad Barrish, Head of Operations at Topspin Media blamed ‘manufacturing problems’ with this item and apologised for the delay but there is still no indication when this item will be shipped and no compensation for the unacceptable delays.

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26 responses to Delays with McCartney RAM Mono Vinyl from paulmccartney.com

  1. Ymaginatif says:

    not ‘delivered’, but ‘shipped’!

    I received my mono LP copy within a week of release. Topspin were doing well.

    ‘waiting’ shouldn’t be so ‘frustrating’ … but yes, that’s the instant society we live in these days …

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      It’s got nothing to do with ‘instant society’ – If you are promised an item on a certain day, then it should be delivered on that day. Over two weeks late with no indication of when they will ship is not good enough.

  2. Steven says:

    And one thing to keep in mind with TopSpin is, Shipping fees are outrageous. So to not receive the item within a day or two of when it is promised in unacceptable. I really don’t understand why these bands’ sites charge so much. I went to pre-order two items of the four offered for Bloc Party’s forthcoming release, “Four”. I add the two items to my cart and check out. It’s a pre-order that will (supposively) arrive on the release date of August 20th. $19 for shipping… Not expedited or rushed in any way. Plain old regular mail. That’s a lot of money. So, when these same items become available for pre-order on Amazon, they’ll be less costly and ship for free. But to pay these rates and not get it on time? Luckily, I live near 6 spectacular indie record shops and was able to walk right in and pick up the mono vinyl. It was more costly for me, though, because I also bought the Deluxe song files in Flac of his official website.

  3. Paul Kent says:

    Not all band sites charge the earth, though. Marillion do it all themselves and are always reasonable and always on time. Just ordered the deluxe edition of their new album due in September – £29.99 for the album, shipping only £1.37! Any orders for their exclusive site-only releases always arrive within two days. Top service. Better when bands do everything in-house, I think!

  4. Brad Barrish says:

    Hi guys. Those mono LPs are due to arrive in our UK warehouse tomorrow (Friday) or Monday. Just to put a little perspective on this issue, there are a total of 28 orders that this issue effected. We really are sorry for the delay and appreciate the patience. Feel free to comment here (I’ll check back) or file a customer support ticket here – https://app.topspin.net/account/help_public and we’ll take care of you.

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Thanks for the update Brad. My feedback for you is that you must have been aware a while back who these 28 people are, but there has been no proactive communication on the part of Topspin Media. You have the email addresses of all concerned, so why not give specific, regular updates to all concerned?! Instead I’m sure like others, I have had to constantly contact YOU to find out what is going on. I must have raised 4 or 5 ‘tickets’ over the last 3 weeks and the response has been neither prompt nor clear.

      For example I raised this via twitter a few weeks back and you got back to me to apologise (appreciated), but at the same time you informed me that “your order did go out a couple of days ago and you should have it very soon”. This was 23rd May. My order number is 20456778 so you can check the ticket. That clearly was not the case since that was 14 days ago, and subsequent correspondence with Johnny Young revealed that my order had not shipped at all (confirmed by the ‘pending’ status of my receipt).

      All I was hearing was ‘thanks for your patience’ and ‘we will ship as soon as they are received by our warehouse’. In other words keep waiting. Topspin could not tell me how long I would have to wait for. And you would not update me. I have to keep checking my receipt or raise a ticket to get any kind of update.

      Clearly you cannot control a manufacturing ‘issue’ (whatever that may have been) but you can control how you interact with your customers. Having chosen to ‘support the artist’ by ordering direct I feel like I’ve suffered twice. Missed on getting the Mono Vinyl of RAM promptly, and endured confusion and poor communication from Topspin Media.

      Have you considered compensating the 28 people that will probably receive their item 3 weeks late? I think if you are looking to turn a positive into a negative, why not offer all affected a RAM T-shirt as a ‘very sorry we let you down’ offering? With such a small number involved it won’t cost you very much, but you would generate much goodwill and those same people would be much more likely to re-order via Topspin in the future. I’m struggling to see why I would want to do that at this present moment in time.

      Thanks
      Paul Sinclair (Editor superdeluxeedition.com)

    • Banton says:

      RAM Deluxe box -set ordered on 26th may.
      Since then, I didn’t receive order, neither shipment confirmation email and even reply to my request on https://app.topspin.net/account/help_public

      Since today, “top spin Live Receipt” mention my order was shipped (2 weeks after order) but there is no tracking number and I didn’t received email (as mentionned in order).

      Topspin : -1

  5. Brad Barrish says:

    Hi Paul. Again, I apologize for the fact that you’ve not received timely responses from the warehouse. I am working through those issues and hope to have full resolution shortly. The long holiday in the UK certainly didn’t help matters. I could not agree more with you on the communication. We really do strive to communicate as much as possible with fans that purchase from our clients (the artists). We advise them on over-communicating to avoid confusion and frustration. There’s a fine line between communication and sending updates with no substance though. You bring up good points and you can be assured that I will take the feedback to heart and do better in the future.

    In the case of the mono LPs, all customers were notified of the delay as soon as we knew about it. They were compensated with a complimentary double LP Ram vinyl. The notification was sent out on 5/23. Those shipped to customers that same week. Please let me know if you didn’t receive the notification or the LP yet and I can check on that for you.

    Obviously we take this stuff seriously. Mistakes get made and I am personally seeing to it that we take steps internally to avoid shortcomings on the things that we can actually control. Thanks again for your feedback and continued patience.

    Cheers,
    Brad

  6. Paul Sinclair says:

    Hi Brad – unfortunately I didn’t get the email you are referring to that was sent on 23 of May, and neither have I had shipment of any complimentary double LP. I guess if I had, then I would be looking much more kindly on the delays.

    Looking back through the communications, on the 24th May Johnny Young does apologise to me for me having not received the email but there is no mention of a complimentary double LP to make up for the delay.

    At that time I’m left to assume I missed out on a simple “sorry about the delay email” so I did not pursue that further.

    A subsequent ‘ticket’ raised by myself is also responded to by Johnny (on 25 May) where he thanks me “for my patience” and tells me they will ship as soon as “they are received by our warehouse”. Again, no mention of complimentary double vinyl LP…?

    So it seems not only has there been a problem with shipping the Mono Vinyl LP, but what is a really good gesture of the complimentary double LP has also been subject to communication and logistical issues. i.e. I wasn’t told, and the double vinyl didn’t arrive either!

    Messing up the original order is one thing, but I’m sure you can see how messing up the apology AS WELL is not making you look too good!!

    Could you please try and sort this out for me? (order number 20456778)

  7. Paul Sinclair says:

    Brad, you can email me direct using the contact button on the top navigation of this site. Thanks, Paul

  8. Brad Barrish says:

    I’m on it and will email you shortly. I will make sure it gets completely sorted out.

  9. Mike Fisher says:

    Hi Brad

    The mp3s were LAME encoded according to one media player I use. Are there still patent issues using LAME in the UK? I contacted customers services and they didn’t seem to understand. They did send me a link for flac files though, which was helpful.

    As for the mono vinyl, I did get my copy week of release, but later than the original “before or on release date” notice (and later than some people in the States it seems.) UK shipping seems reasonably priced, but my vinyl sleeve got a little bent in the post. Thankfully it kind of adds to the aged look, and what with it being limited it didn’t seem worth the hassle of returning.

    All the best

    – Mike

  10. Brad Barrish says:

    Hi Mike. I’m not very well-versed on patent issues with LAME encoding, but there’s no difference in the audio that we provide for UK customers. We receive a source from the artist and transcode (or provide source), and serve whatever version the customer purchases.

    For my money, I wish more artists would do needle drop versions of their albums. I was able to convince Black Rebel Motorcycle Club to do it for their latest re-issue campaign with us for Howl. They are the only artist I know to have done it (so far).

    Cheers,
    Brad

  11. Sam Croft says:

    It took Topspin over two weeks to even ship my deluxe edition Ram (the estimate on the receipt was 72 hours) so I guess they were complications at some point with that product as well.

  12. Steven says:

    Brad – what’s a needle drop version? I just checked their site…Did the color vinyl of HOWL get by me? When I click the BUY link, it goes to another page on their site… guess that means it’s sold out? Either way, can you tell me what Needle Drop is? I’ve loved BRMC from the beginning, before they pretended to be from L.A. Thanks in Advance…

    • PK says:

      Steven, a needle drop is a recording (a digital recording these days) of a vinyl record. In other words, your sound file doesn’t come from the original digital master but from the vinyl record (which often comes from a digital master itself… but sometimes from an analogue magnetic tape.) Sometimes the sound dynamics of needle drops are better.

  13. Mike Fisher says:

    Hi Brad

    Thanks for the effort you’re putting in with your customers.

    – Mike

  14. Steven says:

    Thanks PK.. I’d prefer that… I think Arcade Fire did something similar the Suburbs… where they specifically pointed out that the Download card that came with the vinyl was from the original analog pressing… Brad…can you still buy the colored-vinyl version of HOWL?? I wish this MONO version of McCartney’s RAM came with the option to download… even if it weren’t included with my vinyl copy, but had a separate option to download it from his site… Love playing vinyl at home, but I have a long commute in the car each day so that portability is really convenient

  15. Brad Barrish says:

    @Sam – I can’t speak to why yours was delayed. Would you please write in to customer support and then give me your ticket number? I’ll see if there’s anything we can do.

    @Steven – Looks like they might have taken the offer down now. I just emailed management to see if I can find out. It was a special re-release that they did with a needle drop from the original first UK pressing (analog master) done by PBTHAL. He’s arguably one of the best needle drop guys out there. It took some hunting to find him and we still don’t know who he really is!

    @Mike – What PK said :)

    Happy to help guys! Cool community you have going here.

    • Steven says:

      I’d really appreciate that reply and update Brad… I’m in California, so not sure that offer was available to us in the U.S. – Thanks.

    • Sam Croft says:

      thank you for your help Brad, I should be receiving the deluxe edition either this weekend or monday. My ticket number is 134483.

  16. Brad Barrish says:

    @Steven – I heard back from management and they will likely make the audio available again at some point in the near future and should have the hard goods back up shortly. Basically they used Topspin for the pre-order and then switched everything over to the company that handles their merch. I would just recommend checking their store every so often. I mentioned that I know of a few sales they are leaving on the table ;)

  17. Gareth James says:

    It has taken TopSpin 3 weeks to deliver my RAM delux box set also, with it only arriving today, despite being told it had shipped at various stages and extremely poor communication with regard to finding out what had happened to an item which was by no means cheap. My tickets number is
    131969, Brad. I haven’t received any form of compensation for the three week delay. Can I also expect a Ram double vinyl?
    I do appreciate yout taking time to engage with us here, as the customer service your company offers is largely very poor.

  18. Brad Barrish says:

    @Sam – I have replied on your customer support ticket and we can pick up the conversation there.

    @Gareth – I’m looking into your particular situation and will see what we can do. I should know more in the morning and will follow up via your ticket.

  19. Paul Sinclair says:

    Thanks Brad for your responses to people on this post. I hope everything gets resolved to the satisfaction of all concerned. cheers, Paul

  20. Brad Barrish says:

    No problem! I’m only sorry it’s taken me getting involved to get these folks all sorted out. Making sure they are all taken care of either way.

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