The sorry state of music
You know that things are going bad in the music industry when shares of London-based EMI fall as much as 3% on the news that Paul McCartney is leaving the label to release his next studio CD through Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) this summer.

You're losing recording artists to a coffeehouse? And I love McCartney as much as the next person, but if EMI has so much riding on a 65-year old rocker that has been running dry on the hits front, then maybe the real problem is in EMI's talent recruiting department.

Then again, maybe bolting was the best thing for Sir Paul. As I pointed out earlier this week, if having an in-store presence in all of the nearly 9,500 domestic locations has him selling a single CD each day at every store, he will sell 66,500 units in the first week. That is better than the 60,000 copies of the Dreamgirls soundtrack that sold one week earlier this year, yet that CD still topped the charts.

That is a bigger problem, in and of itself. CD sales are off by 20% this quarter. We're just consuming our music -- like our premium java brews -- in different ways these days.

Claire the room
Surely you've noticed the ridiculous wave of corporate buyouts these days. Claire's Stores (NYSE:CLE) became one of the latest belles to get snatched in a $3.1 billion deal this week.

Even though investors haven't learned how to sell, it's good to know that companies have. When you have seemingly unattractive companies like Take-Two Interactive (NASDAQ:TTWO) soliciting exit strategies and even the operationally challenged Smith & Wollensky (NASDAQ:SWRG) igniting a bidding war, there's no doubt that the publicly traded players know when the getting's good.

But if it's usually private equity that's doing the buying, can selling be a bad thing? Private investment firms are usually pretty sharp. Oh well, at least I know that nobody'll be making any unsolicited buyout offers for me anytime soon.

Let's hope not, anyway.

Until next week, I remain,

Rick Munarriz

Starbucks has been singled out as a Stock Advisor recommendation.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz recommends windshield wiper fluid when trying to look back. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story. The Fool has a disclosure policy.