Just take those old records off the shelf…

vertical-vinyl-recordsSo I bought a record player.  Yep!  And not the kind you find in a second hand store – that’s where I bought my raspberry beret.

71axzRXL2oL._SL1500_It was an impulse buy.  I was actually shopping for Adele’s new album (25) on Amazon and noticed that it was available in vinyl.  Wha???  I had no idea you could still buy “new” vinyl.  I was intrigued!

So I typed in “record player” on Amazon and found this Jensen model that was the top seller and most reviewed.  It was only around $40 so I bought it.  Then I went back and picked up Adele’s new album on vinyl too.

I was born in the late 70’s and by the time I started embracing music outside of sing-song tunes meant for small children or songs I learned from Sesame Street, the 80’s were halfway over and so was the love of listening to records. I admit it. I was from the cassette generation. And what did that do for us? First, it made music more portable. Remember walkmans? And it gave us options in the car when we didn’t want to listen to the radio.

Cassettes also gave us the chance to record the radio. Remember making mix tapes and how pissed you got at the DJ for talking over the intro music to each song?  Then there was the cassette single.  If you didn’t like the whole album (or didn’t have a enough money) you could buy the single.  I was a single junkie. I remember I had half of someone’s album on singles and a friend asked me why I didn’t just save that money and buy the whole album because I might like it. I didn’t have an answer other than those cool little cardboard sleeves that singles came in each had different covers that were pretty cool.

But just like records, cassettes were delicate and easily damaged. Remember sticking a pencil into the hole to wind it back up, or how pissed you got when your player ate some of the tape and you had to try to pull it out? But with cassettes we also slowly began to sacrifice the quality of sound itself. We made music convenient, but we didn’t make it better, and that holds true with CD’s and MP3’s. Don’t believe me?

Plug your iPod into your car and adjust the bass and treble. Turn both of them up!  You’ll be surprised at all of the little background nuances and melodies you are missing out on through your ear buds. I never really noticed until I got my record player and plugged it up.  I was amazed at the difference in sound quality.  And nothing beats that pop and crackle.

Yeah, it’s nostalgic. I laughed at the thought of getting some milk crates for my “new” record collection. Might as well get some paper lanterns and a papasan chair too, huh? But the older I get, the more I like to reminisce about the good old days and let’s face it, we all have a soundtrack to our lives and chances are your glory days were set to music you played on records.  Eight track folks, that’s another blog post!

So after the player arrived on Saturday, I hit the consignment shop and loaded up with some faves. Call me nuts, but I’ll be buying some more. And I’m not getting milk crates but I did buy some nice wooden record holders that are stackable.

I know why we got away from records and all. Yeah, it’s hard to skip to the next song. You have to flip the record when side 1 is done. One of the new albums I bought is on two records, both sides. One side only has 3 songs on it! You also risk scratching it. Records take up a lot of space too.  They aren’t very portable. But the sound quality is superb and what can I say…it’s fun!

So do yourself a favor and drag your old record collection out of the attic if you haven’t sold it on Craigs List already. And if you don’t have a record player, invest in this one. It’s one of the best impulse buys I’ve made in a long time.

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