Everything Old…

I still remember the first time I heard a song on CD. I was working at Walmart, in the electronics department, and we had shelves full of the latest in audio technology–compact disc. It uses a laser–a LASER–to read the audio files and play them through speakers. Or something like that. I really don’t know, but I like to write like I do. What I do know is that the record (CD) I was listening to sounded like nothing I’d ever heard, and I had heard a lot of records. The recording in the CD player that night at Walmart was one I had heard many times– Chicago’s Greatest Hits. The highs were higher, the lows were lower, and the lyrics could be heard with greater clarity than I had heard them on vinyl. That evening, standing in the electronics department at the Prattville Walmart, I knew that everything was about to change. I was not wrong.

When I first heard that people were listening to vinyl records again, I was confused. Why? No. Don’t! Why don’t we just go back in time, to where we didn’t have that pesky internet or those awful cell phones or overnight delivery?

Then one day a couple of years ago at a friend’s house, there was a little portable turntable in the living room, along with the newest Jason Isbell record. VINYL record. Suddenly I felt a little nervous. Excited, but knew I shouldn’t be feeling that way. How could it be wrong, when it felt so right? I looked around to make sure no one could see me, and I did it. I put that record on and, well, it is hard to explain, but feeling the needle hit the groove in the vinyl, then those telltale scratches started to work their way into my soul, and it was like, well, remarkable. It just felt right, like taking all the good things about living a fourth of the way until the twenty-second century, and sending it on a little trip back in time about forty years. At that very instant, I knew that I could be a vinyl guy.

Last Christmas, my dear friend and colleague Kaitlyn, who is my co-worker and, as providence would have it, my secret Santa, bought me a vinyl record. I’d never heard of the group, but it had John Fullbright on it, so I knew I would like it. On the day I opened that gift, she said, “I just figured you for a vinyl record guy.” It was just the impetus needed to go out and purchase a brand spanking new record player. I found one that uses bluetooth technology so it syncs with my Echo and can be played through the whole house. I love it.

It shouldn’t be surprising, the cost of vinyl records in the modern era. On Amazon, I can buy three records for $72 plus tax. That’s a long way from the days of “ten records for one penny when you join the Columbia Record and Tape Club!”

Today, we were blessed with a little extra time on our hands while in town, and we dropped into a used book and record store. I was in heaven. I bought eight or nine records, which back in the day would have cost me over a hundred bucks. But today I spent less than twenty-five. It wasn’t the greatest selection (as you can see from the photos) but we had a great time, and there was some good stuff.

These gems are a buck apiece down at Gardener’s Used Books and Records–better hurry!
Francisco, Mangione, Fogelberg all used to be in my collection.
Ruth is distinctly unimpressed

Where do you go to buy used records? I like acoustic stuff–folk music, old school/Texas country, and jazz from the big band era. Hit me up!

Published by jasonk5322

I'm a teacher, historian, pastor, cyclist, and guitarist. I've been waging a sometimes-noble battle against MS. I love Jesus, and am amazed that He loves me back.

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