Tag Archives: collecting vinyl records

Why I Buy and Sell Vinyl Records

Every once in a while it seems like a good idea to talk about why vinyl records are awesome, why it’s a good thing to collect vinyl and what it means to live the vinyl lifestyle.

Not everybody who buys records is into “living the vinyl lifestyle” but for me personally, this is something I’ve made a massive part of my life. It’s part of my livelihood, it’s part of my creative process, and buying/playing/selling/trading vinyl takes up a big chunk of my day.

Why?

It’s not just about supporting artists that I like, or supporting record stores that have become local institutions in my city, or even just about finding and sharing new music. It’s also about the idea that vinyl records represent something important–people who have decided to make their lives about something more than just a 9-to-5 job or the day-to-day nonsense we’re all plagued with.

It does’t matter if you’re a record seller, a concert-goer, a music reviewer, a vinyl collector or the musician making the music that gets immortalized on vinyl–together we all make this community of people who have found a common joy that is represented by LPs, 12-inch singles, 45s and seven-inch singles, liner notes, artwork and all the wonderful experiences that go along with these things.

When you play a record, go to a record shop, attend a concert, buy a band t-shirt, etc. you participate and contribute to this bigger thing that arose around all of these separate activities. It makes the whole thing possible. It doesn’t matter so much about the genre of music, the location of it, etc. etc…it’s more about the doing and the sharing.

How cool is that?

I love nothing more than coming into my office, turning on the lava lamp and the turntable and relaxing into some strange new vinyl find I discovered earlier in the day. When I list these things for sale, I’ve not just gone out and scoured the earth for them, but I’ve also curated my offerings in my own way–I put my own spin on what I have collected and offer for sale. There’s a fun connection you make with people who share your love for these things.

That’s what keeps me coming back again and again to collecting AND selling–I love making those connections between people who love the kinds of vinyl I too am obsessed with.

Buy a turntable for someone as a present–you could be unlocking a whole new world they never even knew existed until they were faced with the challenge of finding something to play on that new machine.

–Joe Wallace

 

How To Start Collecting Vinyl Records

Seems kind of pointless and stupid for a blog post, right? But stop for a second and ask yourself what got YOU into collecting vinyl?

Some people think that vinyl records aren’t made anymore (hah!) and some feel “it’s too late” to start collecting from scratch. Still others believe you can’t buy a new turntable anymore (double hah!) and don’t feel up to the challenge of finding a used one.

Let it be known, that all three of those notions are myths. New vinyl is being cranked out so fast you can’t keep up with it all–both brand new titles and reissues.

New turntables are available for as low as $99 and have USB connections for those who want to digitize and convert to MP3s. And you CAN find an old-school quality turntable without spending a fortune. Personally I’d avoid pawn shops and stick to Craigslist, yard sales, thrift stores and record shops. Do you need a turntable to start collecting record albums? Not REALLLY. Some people collect LPs and picture discs for the artwork alone, and I personally have purchased vinyl records  on the strength of the covers or artwork alone. I love displaying them as well as listening to ’em.

I got sucked into collecting vinyl because around 1996 I got interested in building a collection of obscure new wave music, and there is a LOT that never made it to CD or digital files–and possibly never will. I decided to take the plunge after attending the Austin Record Convention and finding an LP by a new wave band called Amoebas In Chaos. The track “Lude Behavior” cinched it for me–I had to start collecting these albums!

Buy one vinyl record that you’re really lusting to hear and you’re probably hooked. It’s that easy. If there’s a genre obsession of yours that’s full of rare or obscure bands that never made the jump to digital, you’ve got ages of fun ahead of you. There is nothing in the world like discovering a band you’ve never heard before that’s in the same musical zip code of other groups you like…one you’re sure you’d never have heard otherwise without that serendipitous record store excursion. Can you really afford NOT to be collecting vinyl?

–Joe Wallace