August 13, 2008

Buying Record Albums

My favorite screensaverImage by frotzed2 via Flickr I've been a bit nostalgic lately - probably because of you guys! Several of you have written about vinyl records. Oh how I miss vinyl! I still have a box of them and like to take them out and reminisce. CDs are convenient and all...but can you remember this experience:

Your favorite band has just come out with a new record. You drive (walk, bike, hithchike, take a bus) to the local music store. There were several music stores to choose from back then, but you had a favorite. Mine was Tower Records.

You enter the store, its HUGE. There is some loud music playing and all the employees are the epitome of cool (whatever that happened to look like for that particular era). My Tower had mostly musicians working there, skinny guys with waist length hair and pot leaves on their belt buckles.

Right in front was a display of that longed-for new album. You grabbed it and looked at both sides, barely able to keep from opening it in the store to see the liner notes. But now the adventure begins....rather than heading for the cashier to make a purchase, you enter the AISLES.

There are aisles and aisles of records albums. They are in alphabetical order according to genre. "Rock" takes up 75% of the store. You start with "A" and look through each section, browsing, seeking treasures, getting excited at those marked down prices on old records you always wanted.

Hours could pass during this time. You may notice some other browsers nearby or even strike up a conversation about a great concert you heard while you both stand in front of the "P" section fondly leafing through Pink Floyd, The Police, The Pretenders and Tom Petty.

You usually left with at least three new albums and hurried home for the unwrapping. Remember taking the cellophane off the cover? I used my finger nail to slice along the side and then ripped that stuff off. Then, if you were lucky, the album opened up and had artwork to see not only on front and back but INSIDE. You took out that sweet disc and gently put it on the turntable and sat reading the lyrics along with each new song.

I loved albums. I loved the art, the words, the process of buying them, bringing them home and playing them. I really need to invest in a turntable.



Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

7 comments:

Russ/rfduck said...

My experience is almost the same, only I buy CDs instead of LPs. Are LPs easier to open than CDs? Because CDs make you work for your music!

There's nothing like buying music at a music store. It's just not the same with downloading.

The RIpple Effect said...

Beautiful memories. Seems like I've written four or five times recently about vinyl. There definitely seems to be a new surge in interest in vinyl, lots of new bands putting out vinyl releases. My favorite record store (yes, I still call it a record store) has recently expanded it's vinyl section. To make things even more fun, I've decided to decorate the Ripple office in vintage picture discs, so now I'm digging for vinyl again.

And yes, you must get a turntable. I actually saw a Best Buy commercial where they advertised turntables for $49. Now, how's that for progress!

I still have several thousand vinyl and I'll never give them up. My turntable is up and running. An old '70's lp, Rock Rose is on there right now

musicobsessive said...

You're so right. There is something sensuous about vinyl - the touch, the smell and the large in-your-face cover art. I used to spend hours pouring over the record labels seeing who wrote what and who produced etc. Somehow, CD has none of this stuff.

You also failed to mention a youthful practice of mine which was to spend weeks taking a particular record out of the rack and then putting it back in a fit of anxiety because I hadn't really got the money to spend. After a week or so of this ritual, I'd get up enough courage to buy the thing!

Happy days.

JohnnyG's Blues said...

I always left with 5 albums. Back then they cost $4.99 each and I was buying 5 of them a week. $25 out of a $75 paycheck. To hell with the rent, I had the tunes.

Vinyl piled everywhere. The best part was going through the piles and finding stuff I had never opened!

Starrlight said...

My 13 year old is so pissed vinyl is gone.

And gosh was the record itself just so pretty? Shiny and black and the grooves made patterns. CD's are souless.

Bond said...

But STARR vinyl is making a huge comeback...The new Dylan release will be done in vinyl...John Mayer's latest came out in vinyl...

Of course I have talked about putting my vinyl into my computer...digitizing them so I can have them when I am out and about...

It is great to listen to each and every one as they are digitized. I promised myself that i would go in order (my albums are in a semi-dewey decimal system I took from the radio station i used to work for) Sure I wish i had some Floyd digitized, but I am not up to them yet...

The great thing with Audacity the program I am using is it allows me to tweak the bass level and I have gotten it to a point where the MP3s sound like vinyl and not CDs...

BUT even when I am done digitizing them all, I will not be discarding..they will be with me forever.

BTW, you can get USB turntables now for between $100-$700...

I still have my Pioneer which I used to use when working as a DJ. I just bought a new stylus (one made for digitizing vinyl) and I was all set.

I love the albums from the 60's and 70's...heavy vinyl...not like the 80's and 90's where the vinyl was paper thin. The Dylan vinyl is going to be heavy...and boxed in a wooden box ...should be neat.

Starrlight said...

Yup I know but it will never be what it was unless something radical changes. Like the attention span of today's youth.

My kid actually has a turntable. I need to get her a stylus though. And she has tons of my old LP's.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...