Neil Young’s Pono kickstarter crushes fundraising goal

If all I did was listen to what the critics were saying, I would have assumed that Neil Young would have difficulty raising money for his new Pono Player. But contrary to expectations, Mr. Young is crushing it, at least financially.

As of this writing, his Kickstarter campaign has raised more than $1.27 million, far in excess of his goal of $800,000.

To me, the Pono (pronounced Poe-No) Player looks funky and old-school, as if someone built it from spare parts taken from older devices. But it’s all about the music, right? Given what the critics are saying, I don’t see the win here against existing standards. But I would wager that all that criticism is paper analysis and does not come from hearing the Pono Player itself.

Watch this video. Some musical giants weighing in with their opinions. This might come across as simply marketing, but there’s a lot of enthusiasm from people who seem genuinely impressed by what they are hearing.

That said, here’s a critical hands-on panning of the Pono. Some real venom there.

I hope this turns out well for the Pono team and the people who have invested their hard-earned money. I’d like to hear this with my own ears so I can judge for myself. I am curious. Is this much ado about nothing?