I am back to vinyl — what that means to me

Photo by Luana De Marco on Unsplash

Born in the eighties, even in the cultural — among other things — restricted former Eastern Germany, the vinyl disk on a turntable does bare fond memories of my childhood. There are some clear pictures in my mind — and I admit that there a not a lot of them — of my early years, that show me sitting in front of a turntable. I still have some distant tunes of the Mamas and the Papas’ „Dream a little Dream of me“ in my head, as well as Shirley Bassey’s „History is Repeating“ — maybe a musical foreshadowing.

Neither do I know where these LPs came from and where they vanished along with its playing device, but my musical genesis went on with cassette players and a walkman that literally played only one album — the Grammy-nominated „Automatic for the People“ by REM — and demised amidst the rise of the Compact Disc. My very first CD back then, and I won’t apologies for a horrible taste as it was a gift, was THE „Batman Exclusivities Soundtrack Album“ by Nelson Riddle.

For those old enough to remember that that Franchise did not start with Bale and Nolan nor Keaton and Burton but 1960s Adam West’s iconic depiction of a rather not so dark knight. I do remember playing Nelson’s Big Band tunes voraciously and who can forget the elevator music medley „Holy-hole-in-the-Doughnut“ — probably no one of that age although some might desperately try.

I skipped the Mini-Disc completely and find myself today in an age of streaming, rediscovering the music of the past and being put in a golden age of musical super-exposition. I most certainly haven’t listened to more and new music than now. But for the past year, I have found myself in the possession of two turntables and a growing vinyl collection. The content of that shelf next to my comfy reading chair is ranging from a bluesy classic of a Blind Willy Johnson to newly pressed soundtracks and „reinvented“ Led Zeppelins.

Global venial sales increased over four-hundred percent over the past ten years. The Amazon Bestsellers for vinyl recently mirror the top albums for streaming. More turntables are bought today than CD-Players.

A record player does not impose this convenient mindlessness. Depending on the size of the record, at some point, you have to turn the record and play the other side and further down the road there is just the clicking in the silence signaling the end.

Listing to vinyl is actually waiting for a manual intermission while enjoying tunes. But still, it does more.

So from time to time I sit down in that comfy chair and become a vinyl hermit getting a necessary rest for brain and soul.

Analogue-guy being digitally overwhelmed…oh, and of course a writer. And I don’t write infomercials and don’t write for a niche, but what comes to my mind.

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