"M" is a song written by Japanese singer Ayumi Hamasaki from her album I Am.... The lead single from the album and Hamasaki's nineteenth overall, "M" marked Hamasaki's increased creative control over her music, as it was the first song she composed, under the pseudonym "CREA"; the single is to date one of Hamasaki's most commercially successful. Moreover, the single sold over 1,000,000 copies over its seventeen-week run and became a RIAJ-certified million-seller. Shortly after the release of her studio album Duty, Hamasaki began writing "M". Before Hamasaki's staff had composed the melodies. However, with "M", Hamasaki felt that none of the melodies composed by her staff fit her vision of the song, she decided to compose the melody herself. She began work on an electronic keyboard. Throughout the song, Hamasaki addresses "Maria". Hamasaki is ambiguous as to the identity of "Maria"; the story was pivotal in the shaping of the theme of the song, according to Hamasaki, is about a "woman who won't change with time".
Like other songs from I am... Hamasaki explores the topics of couples and love. According to Hamasaki, the melodies composed by her staff for "M" did not fit her image for the song because they were too "warm"—she had envisioned a melody with a "cold" feeling. That, according to Hamasaki, meant a melody, "difficult to grasp" and started in a lower key before progressing to a higher key; the song is written in common time and begins in the key of C major before progressing to the key of C-sharp major. The song uses piano, electric guitar and various stringed instruments. "M", unlike Hamasaki's antecedent songs, does not follow the verse-chorus form. The verses are followed by a pre-chorus after; the chorus and a repetition of it follow. A second verse is sung before the repetition of the introduction, at which point the song ends; the music video for "M", directed by Wataru Takeishi, opens with Hamasaki singing the introduction against a stained-glass window. The first instrumental bridge follows, during, seen the exterior of a church.
When the first verse starts, the doors of the church open and glowing particles sweep into the church. When the chorus starts, Hamasaki is seen outside the church singing with her band. At the end of the video, the glowing particles sweep out of the church and the gown-clad Hamasaki disappears. "M" debuted at the number-one position on the Oricon weekly charts on its first week of release, selling 541,350 copies. The single remained atop the charts the second week; the sales rose the third week: the single sold 246,150 copies. By the fourth week, "M" remained at the number-two position with 95,770 copies sold, it remained in the Top 10 the following three weeks, dropping from the number-five position to the number-seven position. It remained in the Top 30 for two more weeks. By the end of its nine-week run in the Oricon Top 30, "M" sold 1,279,830 copies, making it the best-selling single from I am... and adding to Hamasaki's million-selling singles. Vocals: Ayumi Hamasaki Melodic Composition: Ayumi Hamasaki Arrangement: HΛL Mixing: Koji Morimoto Production: Max Matsuura Sound production: Naoto Suzuki Production assisting: Yuka Akiyama Mastering: Shigeo Miyamoto "M" information at Avex Network.
"M" information at Oricon. M / 浜崎あゆみ on YouTube
In the music industry, a single is a type of release a song recording of fewer tracks than an LP record or an album. This can be released for sale to the public in a variety of different formats. In most cases, a single is a song, released separately from an album, although it also appears on an album; these are the songs from albums that are released separately for promotional uses such as digital download or commercial radio airplay and are expected to be the most popular. In other cases a recording released. Despite being referred to as a single, singles can include up to as many as three tracks; the biggest digital music distributor, iTunes Store, accepts as many as three tracks less than ten minutes each as a single, as does popular music player Spotify. Any more than three tracks on a musical release or thirty minutes in total running time is either an extended play or, if over six tracks long, an album; when mainstream music was purchased via vinyl records, singles would be released double-sided.
That is to say, they were released with an A-side and B-side, on which two singles would be released, one on each side. Moreover, only the most popular songs from a released album would be released as a single. In more contemporary forms of music consumption, artists release most, if not all, of the tracks on an album as singles; the basic specifications of the music single were set in the late 19th century, when the gramophone record began to supersede phonograph cylinders in commercially produced musical recordings. Gramophone discs were manufactured in several sizes. By about 1910, the 10-inch, 78 rpm shellac disc had become the most used format; the inherent technical limitations of the gramophone disc defined the standard format for commercial recordings in the early 20th century. The crude disc-cutting techniques of the time and the thickness of the needles used on record players limited the number of grooves per inch that could be inscribed on the disc surface, a high rotation speed was necessary to achieve acceptable recording and playback fidelity.
78 rpm was chosen as the standard because of the introduction of the electrically powered, synchronous turntable motor in 1925, which ran at 3600 rpm with a 46:1 gear ratio, resulting in a rotation speed of 78.26 rpm. With these factors applied to the 10-inch format and performers tailored their output to fit the new medium; the 3-minute single remained the standard into the 1960s, when the availability of microgroove recording and improved mastering techniques enabled recording artists to increase the duration of their recorded songs. The breakthrough came with Bob Dylan's "Like a Rolling Stone". Although CBS tried to make the record more "radio friendly" by cutting the performance into halves, separating them between the two sides of the vinyl disc, both Dylan and his fans demanded that the full six-minute take be placed on one side, that radio stations play the song in its entirety; as digital downloading and audio streaming have become more prevalent, it has become possible for every track on an album to be available separately.
The concept of a single for an album has been retained as an identification of a more promoted or more popular song within an album collection. The demand for music downloads skyrocketed after the launch of Apple's iTunes Store in January 2001 and the creation of portable music and digital audio players such as the iPod. In September 1997, with the release of Duran Duran's "Electric Barbarella" for paid downloads, Capitol Records became the first major label to sell a digital single from a well-known artist. Geffen Records released Aerosmith's "Head First" digitally for free. In 2004, Recording Industry Association of America introduced digital single certification due to significant sales of digital formats, with Gwen Stefani's "Hollaback Girl" becoming RIAA's first platinum digital single. In 2013, RIAA incorporated on-demand streams into the digital single certification. Single sales in the United Kingdom reached an all-time low in January 2005, as the popularity of the compact disc was overtaken by the then-unofficial medium of the music download.
Recognizing this, On 17 April 2005, Official UK Singles Chart added the download format to the existing format of physical CD singles. Gnarls Barkley was the first act to reach No.1 on this chart through downloads alone in April 2006, for their debut single "Crazy", released physically the following week. On 1 January 2007 digital downloads became eligible from the point of release, without the need for an accompanying physical. Sales improved in the following years, reaching a record high in 2008 that still proceeded to be overtaken in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Singles have been issued in various formats, including 7-inch, 10-inch, 12-inch vinyl discs. Other, less common, formats include singles on Digital Compact Cassette, DVD, LD, as well as many non-standard sizes of vinyl disc; the most common form of the vinyl single is the 45 or 7-inch. The names are derived from its play speed, 45 rpm, the standard diameter, 7 inches; the 7-inch 45 rpm record was released 31 March 1949 by RCA Victor as a smaller, more durable and higher-fidelity replacement for the 78 rpm shellac discs.
The first 45
J-pop, natively known as pops, is a musical genre that entered the musical mainstream of Japan in the 1990s. Modern J-pop has its roots in traditional Japanese music, but in 1960s pop and rock music, such as The Beatles and The Beach Boys, which led to Japanese rock bands such as Happy End fusing rock with Japanese music in the early 1970s. J-pop was further defined by new wave groups in the late 1970s electronic synth-pop band Yellow Magic Orchestra and pop rock band Southern All Stars. J-pop replaced kayōkyoku in the Japanese music scene; the term was coined by the Japanese media to distinguish Japanese music from foreign music and now refers to most Japanese popular music. Popular styles of Japanese pop music included technopop during the 1970s–1980s, city pop in the 1980s, Shibuya-kei in the 1990s; the origin of modern J-pop is said to be Japanese-language rock music inspired by the likes of The Beatles. Unlike the Japanese music genre called kayōkyoku, J-pop uses a special kind of pronunciation, similar to that of English.
One notable singer to do so is Keisuke Kuwata. Additionally, unlike Western music, the major second was not used in Japanese music, except art music, before rock music became popular in Japan; when the Group Sounds genre, inspired by Western rock, became popular, Japanese pop music adopted the major second, used in the final sounds of The Beatles' song "I Want to Hold Your Hand" and The Rolling Stones' song " Satisfaction". Although Japanese pop music changed from music based on Japanese pentatonic scale and distortional tetrachord to the more occidental music over time, music that drew from the traditional Japanese singing style remained popular. At first, the term J-pop was used only for Western-style musicians in Japan, such as Pizzicato Five and Flipper's Guitar, just after Japanese radio station J-Wave was established. On the other hand, Mitsuhiro Hidaka of AAA from Avex Trax said that J-pop was derived from the Eurobeat genre. However, the term became a blanket term, covering other music genres—such as the majority of Japanese rock music of the 1990s.
In 1990, the Japanese subsidiary of Tower Records defined J-pop as all Japanese music belonging to the Recording Industry Association of Japan except Japanese independent music. Ito Music City, a Japanese record store, adopted expanded classifications including Group Sounds, idol of the 1970s–1980s, enka and established musicians of the 1970s–1980s, in addition to the main J-pop genres. Whereas rock musicians in Japan hate the term "pop", Taro Kato, a member of pop punk band Beat Crusaders, pointed out that the encoded pop music, like pop art, was catchier than "J-pop" and he said that J-pop was the pops music, memorable for its frequency of airplay, in an interview when the band completed their first full-length studio album under a major label, P. O. A.: Pop on Arrival, in 2005. Because the band did not want to perform J-pop music, their album featured the 1980s Pop of MTV. According to his fellow band member Toru Hidaka, the 1990s music that influenced him was not listened to by fans of other music in Japan at that time.
In contrast to this, although many Japanese rock musicians until the late 1980s disrespected the kayōkyoku music, many of Japanese rock bands of the 1990s—such as Glay—assimilated kayōkyoku into their music. After the late 1980s, breakbeat and samplers changed the Japanese music scene, where expert drummers had played good rhythm because traditional Japanese music did not have the rhythm based on rock or blues. Hide of Greeeen described their music genre as J-pop, he said, "I love rock, hip hop and breakbeats, but my field is J-pop. For example, hip hop musicians learn'the culture of hip hop'. We are not like those musicians and we love the music as sounds much; those professional people may say'What are you doing?' but I think that our musical style is cool after all. The good thing is good." Japanese popular music, called ryūkōka before being split into enka and poppusu, has origins in the Meiji period, but most Japanese scholars consider the Taishō period to be the actual starting point of ryūkōka, as it is the era in which the genre first gained nationwide popularity.
By the Taishō period, Western musical techniques and instruments, introduced to Japan in the Meiji period, were used. Influenced by Western genres such as jazz and blues, ryūkōka incorporated Western instruments such as the violin and guitar. However, the melodies were written according to the traditional Japanese pentatonic scale. In the 1930s, Ichiro Fujiyama released popular songs with his tenor voice. Fujiyama sang songs with a lower volume than opera through the microphone. Jazz musician Ryoichi Hattori attempted to produce Japanese native music which had a "flavor" of blues, he composed Noriko Awaya's hit song "Wakare no Blues". Awaya was called "Queen of Blues" in Japan. Due to pressure from the Imperial Army during the war, the performance of jazz music was temporarily halted in Japan. Hattori, who
Audience (Ayumi Hamasaki song)
"Audience" is a song by Japanese recording artist Ayumi Hamasaki from her third studio album Duty. It was released as the album's final single on 1 November 2000 by Avex Trax. Hamasaki wrote Max Matsuura Lewis produced it. Dai Nagao and HΛL composed both the single and album version; the single artwork was shot by Japanese photographer Toru Kumazawa and features duplicate clones of Hamasaki, resembling an audience. Musically, "Audience" is a dance -- disco song. "Audience" received positive reviews from music critics. It achieved lukewarm success in compare to her previous singles, with a peak position of number three on the Oricon Singles Chart and a gold certification by the Recording Industry Association of Japan; the single remains Hamasaki's twenty–seventh best selling single in Japan. No music video was shot for the single. Ayumi Hamasaki's track. Hamasaki begun work on Duty and followed a similar musical concept like her first two albums A Song for ×× and Loveppears. "Audience" was written by Hamasaki.
Majority of the lyrics were about loneliness, chaos and the burden of her responsibilities, aimed towards her public image as an recording artist. In contrast to "Audience", the trilogy singles focused on hopelessness, a reflection of Hamasaki's disappointment that she had not expressed herself in any of her previous lyrics, she described her feelings after the writing as "unnatural" and was "nervous" for the final result. The song was recorded in mid -- 2000 in Japan. Max Matsuura produced both the single version and the album version, with additional production handling by Naoto Suzuki for the single version. HΛL played the keyboard, Suzuki played the guitar and all other instruments were handled by Dai Nagao. "Audience" is a dance song. In comparison, Duty was a rock–influenced album and "Audience" was the only dance track on the album."Audience" was her third song to incorporate an English–language phrase, alongside her single "Whatever" and the b–side to "Love", "Love: Since 1999". But because "Audience" and "Whatever" used one–worded phrases and "Love: Since 1999" was not written by Hamasaki, it does not count in using English–language conversation like she did in her 2002 album Rainbow.
"Audience" was released on 1 November 2000 in CD format by Avex Trax. The maxi single features over nine remixes, one instrumental and an a cappella of "Seasons"; the cover sleeve features several clones of Hamasaki. The cover shoot was photographed by Japanese photographer Toru Kumazawa with a total off seven make–up and hair assistants. Shinichi Hara had directed the cover sleeve and has been Hamasaki's creative director for promotional work and began collaborating with her in 1998, his final work was directing the sleeve for Hamasaki's 2009 single "Sunrise/Sunset". A digital release of the single was released in Australia, New Zealand, North America and the United Kingdom. A vinyl was distributed in Japan only. "Audience" has featured on three greatest hits compilation albums by Hamasaki including the white deluxe edition of A Best 2, A Complete: All Singles and A Summer Best. No music video was shot for the single. Only a video commercial for the single was aired in Japan; this became Hamasaki's first single to not feature a music video.
"Audience" received favorable reviews from most music critics. Alexey Eremenko, who had written her extended biography at Allmusic, highlighted the song as an album and career stand out. A reviewer for CDJournal was positive towards the track, commending the production and calling it “fun” but “aggressive” Hamasaki hosted an online voting poll for fans to choose their favorite tracks to be featured on her Ayumi Hamasaki 15th Anniversary Tour Best Live Tour; as a result, "Audience" were featured on the list."Audience" debuted at number three on the Japanese Count Down TV chart. The song was unable to pass Misia's single "Everything" and Southern All Stars' single "Blue in Green", it fell to number eight the next week. It fell to sixteen in its third week, fell at number thirty and forty-six in its fourth and fifth week, respectively; the song fell to seventy-nine. "Audience" lasted eight weeks. In the 2000 annual Count Down TV chart, "Audience" was placed at ninety-two."Audience" was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of Japan for shipment of 200,000 units.
"Audience" resulted in the lowest selling single off Duty, with only the lead "trilogy" singles selling over 500,000 units in Japan. Despite this result, "Audience" now remains Hamasaki's second best selling limited edition single to date with sales over 293,000 units, just behind "Fly High" which sold 300,000 units. "Audience" is her twenty–seventh best selling single. Hamasaki has performed "Audience" in all of her New Years countdown concerts up until the Ayumi Hamasaki Countdown Live 2006–2007 A, which became the songs last live performance at the countdown shows. Additionally, Hamasaki has performed "Audience" twice in her involvement with Avex Trax's concert A Nation, being performed in 2006 and the last performance being held in 2008."Audience" has been featured on several of Hamasaki's national and international tours that has spread throughout many Asian territories. The song had made its debut tour performance on Hamasaki's 2001 Ayumi Hama
"Love" is a song recorded by Japanese recording artist Ayumi Hamasaki, serving as the second single for her second studio album, Loveppears. It was released by Avex Trax in Japan and Taiwan on April 14, 1999, through Avex Entertainment Inc. worldwide in September 2008. The track was written by Hamasaki herself, while production was handled by long-time collaborator Max Matsuura. Three versions of the recording have been made available—a ballad version arranged by Tsunku, an edited version with vocals by Tsunku, a dance-influenced version included on Loveppears. Upon its release, "Love" received near universal acclaim from music critics, praising her vocal performance, with some highlighting the single as one of Hamasaki's best work. Commercially, the recording experienced success in Japan, reaching number one on the Oricon Singles Chart and TBS' Count Down TV chart, her first song to do so on either charts, it became Hamasaki's first single to sell over 500,000 units, was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of Japan for shipments of 400,000 copies.
Due to the single's success, it re-entered both charts. An accompanying music video was directed by Wataru Takeishi, featured Hamasaki in a large skyscraper while singing to the song in different areas. In order to promote the single, it appeared on several remix and greatest hits compilation albums, live concert torus conducted by Hamasaki, it was used as the theme song for Japanese television show SemiDouble. To date, the recording remains one of her highest-selling singles according to Oricon Style. Three versions of the recording have been made available for purchase. "Love" served as Hamasaki's second single for her album Loveppears but did not appear on the album for unknown reasons. Written by the singer, the production process was handled by Max Matsuura whilst it was composed by Japanese musician and businessman Tsunku, who worked as the producer for Japanese group Morning Musume and vocalist of Sharan Q at that time; the composition was arranged by Shingo Kobayashi and Yasuaki Maejima, mixed by Atsushi Hattori.
The second version, "Love", portrayed a duet with Tsunki and featured songwriting credits by him during the English chorus. Being arranged by Takao Konishi and mixed by Koji Uchikado, the track appeared as an A-side single in Japan and Taiwan during its April 1999 release; the final counterpart of the recording was titled "Love", was composed by Tsunki, but arranged by Naoto Suzuki and programmed by Takahiro Iida. "Love" was added to the track list of Loveppears, is musically a dance song, a genre that influences the album. According to the demo sheet music published at Ultimate Guitar Archive, the recording is set in time signature of common time with a tempo of 89 beats per minute. Lyrically, each song was written in third person perspective, a trait, shared with the rest of the tracks on Loveppears; the lyrical content of the songs delves on a lonely woman. "Love" was released by Avex Trax in Japan and Taiwan on April 14, 1999, through Avex Entertainment Inc. worldwide in September 2008. The mini CD format featured a total of four tracks, with the first two being original recordings accompanied instrumentals.
Subsequently, on February 28, 2001, Avex Trax distributed a CD single including the four tracks from the mini CD, plus two remixes of Hamasaki's single "Kanariya" and one remix of a previous album track, "From Your Letter". The artwork of the CD and digital format was shot by Toru Kumazawa, featured an image of Hamasaki hugging an unidentified male. Upon its release, "Love" received widespread acclaim from music critics. A reviewer at Amazon was positive towards the songwriting, praised Hamasaki's "painful" and "love" performance. In 2015, Japanese website Goo.ne.jp hosted a 24-hour only poll for audiences in Japan to vote for their favorite single released by Hamasaki. Commercially, "Love" experienced success in Japan, it debuted inside the top ten on the Oricon Singles Chart, selling 70,540 in its first week of availability. The recording went to number one, becoming Hamasaki's first number one single on that chart, it lasted 26 weeks. Charting together as "Love"/"Love", both tracks debuted at number one on the Count Down TV chart hosted by Tokyo Broadcasting System, having become her first number one there as well, spent 26 weeks within the top 100.
By the end of 1999, "Love" sold over 650,790 units in Japan, thus being ranked at number 30 on Oricon's Annual 1999 chart behind two fellow releases of the singer, "Boys & Girls" and her extended play A. Likewise, it charted at number 28 on TBS' Annual Chart. In July 1999, the single was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of Japan for shipments of 400,000 units; as of July 2016, "Love" marks the singer's 12th highest-selling song based on Oricon Style's database. Following the CD single release, "Love" charted at number 20 on the Oricon Singles Chart, the highest result from her re-released maxi CDs, it lasted four weeks within the top 100, sold 39,080 units. Additionally, the song reached number 100 on TBS Count Down TV chart on May 14, 2001, her lowest entry to date. An accompanying music video for the single was directed by Wataru Takeishi, it opens with Hamasaki watching her previous music videos on several television screens. Sitting in a small room, she exits it and finds a large number
A CD single is a music single in the form of a compact disc. The standard in the Red Book for the term CD single is an 8cm CD, it now refers to any single recorded onto a CD of any size the CD5, or 5-inch CD single. The format was introduced in the mid-1980s but did not gain its place in the market until the early 1990s. With the rise in digital downloads in the early 2010s, sales of CD singles have decreased. Commercially released CD singles can vary in length from two songs up to six songs like an EP; some contain multiple mixes of one or more songs, in the tradition of 12" vinyl singles, in some cases, they may contain a music video for the single itself as well as a collectible poster. Depending on the nation, there may be limits on the number of songs and total length for sales to count in singles charts. Dire Straits' "Brothers in Arms" is reported to have been the world's first CD single, issued in the UK in two separate singles as a promotional item, one distinguished with a logo for the tour, Live in'85, a second to commemorate the Australian leg of the tour marked Live in'86.
Containing four tracks, it had a limited print run. The first commercially released CD Single was Angeline by John Martyn released on 1 February 1986. CD singles were first made eligible for the UK Singles Chart in 1987, the first number 1 available on the format in that country was "I Wanna Dance with Somebody" by Whitney Houston in May 1987; the Mini CD single CD3 format was created for use for singles in the late 1980s, but met with limited success in the US. The smaller CDs were more successful in Japan and had a resurgence in Europe early this century, marketed as "Pock it" CDs, being small enough to fit in a shirt pocket. By 1989, the CD3 was in decline in the US, it was common in the 1990s for US record companies to release both a two-track CD and a multi-track maxi CD. In the UK, record companies would release two CDs but these consisted of three tracks or more each. During the 1990s, CD single releases became less common in certain countries and were released in smaller editions, as the major record labels feared they were cannibalizing the sales of higher-profit-margin CD albums.
Pressure from record labels made singles charts in some countries become song charts, allowing album cuts to chart based only on airplay, without a single being released. In the US, the Billboard Hot 100 made this change in December 1998, after which few songs were released in the CD single format in the US, but they remained popular in the UK and other countries, where charts were still based on single sales and not radio airplay. At the end of the 1990s, the CD was the biggest-selling single format in the UK, but in the US, the dominant single format was airplay. With the advent of digital music sales, the CD single has been replaced as a distribution format in most countries, most charts now include digital download counts as well as physical single sales. In Australia, the Herald Sun reported the CD single is "set to become extinct". In early July 2009, leading music store JB Hi-Fi ceased stocking CD singles because of declining sales, with copies of the week's No. 1 single selling as few as only 350 copies across all their stores nationwide.
While CD singles no longer maintain their own section of the store, copies are still distributed but placed with the artist's albums. That is predominantly the case for popular Australian artists such as Jessica Mauboy, Kylie Minogue and, most Delta Goodrem, whose then-recent singles were released on CD in limited quantities; the ARIA Singles Chart is now "predominantly compiled from legal downloads", ARIA stopped compiling their physical singles sales chart. "On a Mission" by Gabriella Cilmi was the last CD single to be stocked in Kmart and Big W, who concluded stocking newly released singles. Sanity Entertainment, having resisted the decline for longer than the other major outlets, has ceased selling CD singles. In China and South Korea, CD single releases have been rare since the format was introduced, due of the amount of infringement and illegal file sharing over the internet, most of the time singles have been album cuts chart based only on airplay, but with the advent of digital music the charts have occasionally included digital download counts.
In Greece and Cyprus, the term "CD single" is used to describe an extended play in which there may be anywhere from three to six different tracks. These releases charted on the Greek Singles Chart with songs released as singles; the original CD single is a music single released on a mini Compact Disc that measures 8 cm in diameter, rather than the standard 12 cm. They are manufactured using the same methods as standard full-size CDs, can be played in most standard audio CD players and CD-ROM disc drives; the format was first released in the United States, United Kingdom, France, West Germany, Hong Kong in 1987 as the replacement for the 7-inch single. While mini CDs have fallen out of popularity among most major record labels, they remain a popular, low cost way for independent musicians and groups to release music. Capable of holding up to 20 minutes of music, most mini CD singles contain at least two tracks, ofte
A-side and B-side
The terms A-side and B-side refer to the two sides of 78, 45, 331⁄3 rpm phonograph records, or cassettes, whether singles, extended plays, or long-playing records. The A-side featured the recording that the artist, record producer, or the record company intended to receive the initial promotional effort and receive radio airplay to become a "hit" record; the B-side is a secondary recording that has a history of its own: some artists released B-sides that were considered as strong as the A-side and became hits in their own right. Others took the opposite approach: producer Phil Spector was in the habit of filling B-sides with on-the-spot instrumentals that no one would confuse with the A-side. With this practice, Spector was assured that airplay was focused on the side he wanted to be the hit side. Music recordings have moved away from records onto other formats such as CDs and digital downloads, which do not have "sides", but the terms are still used to describe the type of content, with B-side sometimes standing for "bonus" track.
The first sound recordings at the end of the 19th century were made on cylinder records, which had a single round surface capable of holding two minutes of sound. Early shellac disc records records only had recordings on one side of the disc, with a similar capacity. Double-sided recordings, with one selection on each side, were introduced in Europe by Columbia Records in 1908, by 1910 most record labels had adopted the format in both Europe and the United States. There were no record charts until the 1930s, radio stations did not play recorded music until the 1950s. In this time, A-sides and B-sides existed. In June 1948, Columbia Records introduced the modern 331⁄3 rpm long-playing microgroove vinyl record for commercial sales, its rival RCA Victor, responded the next year with the seven-inch 45 rpm vinylite record, which would replace the 78 for single record releases; the term "single" came into popular use with the advent of vinyl records in the early 1950s. At first, most record labels would randomly assign which song would be an A-side and which would be a B-side.
Under this random system, many artists had so-called "double-sided hits", where both songs on a record made one of the national sales charts, or would be featured on jukeboxes in public places. As time wore on, the convention for assigning songs to sides of the record changed. By the early sixties, the song on the A-side was the song that the record company wanted radio stations to play, as 45 rpm single records dominated the market in terms of cash sales, it was not until 1968, for example, that the total production of albums on a unit basis surpassed that of singles in the United Kingdom. In the late 1960s, stereo versions of pop and rock songs began to appear on 45s; the majority of the 45s were played on AM radio stations, which were not equipped for stereo broadcast at the time, so stereo was not a priority. However, the FM rock stations did not like to play monaural content, so the record companies adopted a protocol for DJ versions with the mono version of the song on one side, stereo version of the same song on the other.
By the early 1970s, double-sided hits had become rare. Album sales had increased, B-sides had become the side of the record where non-album, non-radio-friendly, instrumental versions or inferior recordings were placed. In order to further ensure that radio stations played the side that the record companies had chosen, it was common for the promotional copies of a single to have the "plug side" on both sides of the disc. With the decline of 45 rpm vinyl records, after the introduction of cassette and compact disc singles in the late 1980s, the A-side/B-side differentiation became much less meaningful. At first, cassette singles would have one song on each side of the cassette, matching the arrangement of vinyl records, but cassette maxi-singles, containing more than two songs, became more popular. Cassette singles were phased out beginning in the late 1990s, the A-side/B-side dichotomy became extinct, as the remaining dominant medium, the compact disc, lacked an equivalent physical distinction.
However, the term "B-side" is still used to refer to the "bonus" tracks or "coupling" tracks on a CD single. With the advent of downloading music via the Internet, sales of CD singles and other physical media have declined, the term "B-side" is now less used. Songs that were not part of an artist's collection of albums are made available through the same downloadable catalogs as tracks from their albums, are referred to as "unreleased", "bonus", "non-album", "rare", "outtakes" or "exclusive" tracks, the latter in the case of a song being available from a certain provider of music. B-side songs may be released on the same record as a single to provide extra "value for money". There are several types of material released in this way, including a different version, or, in a concept record, a song that does not fit into the story lin