I want to address the “other” shelves of my bookcases…the taller and deeper shelves I had custom made for my vinyl record collection.
Why do I keep vinyl records when most of the world has moved through cassette tapes, CDs, and now to digital downloads?
When society arrived at digital music, we no doubt gained quality, and we certainly gained convenience.
But…what did we lose?
When listened to one side at a time, a record presents itself like…the chapters of a book.
With the ability to skip a song (CDs) or not have access to all songs (digital buying) we lose this aspect of hearing an entire book instead of just a chapter.
Granted I am all for skipping songs that I don’t want to hear. Life is too short. At the same time, I have an appreciation for the trajectory and complete presentation an album provides.
My love of vinyl is not only about the sounds (which admittedly often include skipping if we have not been super careful all of the time!!! and a crackle at the beginning, which I do love!!)
A vinyl record is a piece of art, a piece of history, an heirloom.
These aspects are lost with a digital file.
My vinyl collection is fairly large because it contains much of my parents’ record collection, of which they were happy to rid themselves if I remember correctly. I remember many of these records from my childhood. And not just the sounds, but the pictures and artwork on these records.
Also, my shelves also contain the collection of my husband’s dad (who died before I met him). The first time I listed to some of the records from his collection, I felt like I was meeting his dad.
It was actually several years before we “combined” our collections…they felt “separate” but now they are merged as one, our collection.
An old record has its own history of being enjoyed by others and kept in their own collections…like an old book. Some even have names written on them.
It’s fun to think of these same records being played at parties in the early ’70s, before I even existed.
I am not trying to dis digital music; we collect that now too. And I am not saying we listen to vinyl all the time…more like once a month…otherwise our entire collection would be skipping by now HA…and sometimes we start a record and don’t finish it because…
When a record goes silent, someone has to flip it over…and….I’m still trying to think of something positive about this aspect…LOL.
All in all, I love my vinyl collection and am proud of what it adds to my bookcases.
Interested in collecting vinyl?
The good news is that records can be super cheap. You can find them on EBay, at used book stores, garage sales, etc. You also can probably take them off someone else’s hands (who just doesn’t get it!) for free! Make sure the record is not already bent or scratched before buying. But even so, the cover is still “artwork.” For some of the more popular albums, if you want to make sure it does play well, you will have to spend a little more. Amazon has a ton; here is one of my favorites: Born To Run
You may need to buy new is a turntable. We bought this one a few years back and it has worked great for us: Denon DP-200USB Fully Automatic Turntable with MP3 Encoder. If I were buying today I’d go for the newer version: Denon DP-300F Fully Automatic Analog Turntable. This one looks great too: Audio-Technica AT-LP120-USB Direct-Drive Professional Turntable in Silver.
Who else has an active nostalgia for vinyl? Why do you keep your vinyl collection? Do you add to it often?