My music taste has expanded infinitely over the years, but the Internet has always been a tool to keep up with current music – to explore up-and-coming bands. My taste in older music – the Bob Wills, the Simon Fraser and Debolts, and the Benny Goodmans – was always relegated to tangible music portals, to the vinyl, CDs, and cassettes that over the years would get broken or cracked or lost or forgotten.
But as I shift into finding what's feasible from the comfort of my couch, I'm finding that Internet sites such as Last.fm, YouTube, and Pandora are goldmines for digging up old music friends as well as the new. In fact, the magnitude of media on the Net these days provides an interconnected database of old music that isn't available in most traditional collections. And so I came to re-familiarize myself with the Memphis crooner, Roy Orbison, while browsing YouTube the other day.   
Known for his powerful, delicate voice, Orbison was known for his ballads (most will recognize “Pretty Woman”) and died at the zenith of the resurgence of his popularity in the late 1980s. Over the years, I had forgotten about the late Orbison and his quiet reflections on love until my scavenger path led me the other day to a clip of him singing on YouTube at a benefit also starring Mick Jagger and Elivis Costello. There he stood center stage, black shades and all, belting out the classic “Crying.”
My point is not that you should listen to Orbison, or stay plastered to your computer screen from January to March. And, really, nothing can replace the sound of vinyl or the tangible tracks if you have access to them. But it sure is satisfying to stumble upon a rare live concert clip or forgotten track while surfing the Web on a frosty winter afternoon.

In The Fray is a nonprofit staffed by volunteers. If you liked this piece, could you please donate $10?