Good thing I didn't mention the vacuum tubes, huh?
33 responses Add your response
Along similiar lines, a friend gave me his record collection, because he was into CD's for the ease. So after cleaning some, still working through them, played him one and he could not believe it. He thought they had been beat up beyond repair. Sounded great to me and him. So tell your postmaster to get a record cleaning machine and find out just how good vinyl can be
That's a horrible thing to say about postal employees. All the USPS workers I've crossed paths with have been terrific - intelligent, courteous and dedicated.
I find people are far more surprised to learn that I'm still using tubes than still buying and playing vinyl. Lots of people still have a few LPs around, and sometimes even a turntable, but almost no one has tubes any more. Just as with records, the question is always "Why?", and the answer is "Because I like the way they sound."
More than once these conversations have led to people either giving or selling me their LPs or old stashes of tubes. They always enjoy knowing they're going to someone who loves and appreciates them as much as they once did.
I have a friend here with 2-3000 mostly jazz LPs that he rarely listens to, and when he does plays them on an old Radio Shack tabletop console, with the original stylus and no record cleaning ever. I've offered to pay him, but he can't bear to part with any of them.
No surprise to me, I doubt the "general" public realizes that LP's are still made; why would they think differentlty, they don't see them in the places they see music for sale, nor do they see turntables next to CDP's for sale.
I suspect that most that enlighten others about vinyl, do so in a prideful (smug) manner.
Chadnliz, OT but I totally agree with you. Here in my area of NYC (serviced by one of the notoriously bad UPS stations) you can hear people laughing (or furiously ranting) about the level of intelligence of the postal employees on a daily basis...at work, on the streets, in restaurants, at parties (really, it's a big deal.) it's hard to believe they can even get themselves to work.
Alright, I guess my intent was not to bash USPS employees. The Postmaster, and the woman both seemed like normal, regular folks. I was the nut job here, for not realizing how out of touch I was with reality.
I'm not saying that there are no stupid USPS employees. The one I dealt with did not come off at all like a stupid individual though. He was on the upper end of people that I've dealt with in any service industry to be honest. Well groomed, articulate and friendly.
More than can be said about [email protected], who appears to have just crawled out from under a rock for some good old-fashioned trolling.
come on people,USPS employees are like everyone else in this country,it's just a job and with all jobs it gets boring so they were looking for some conversation. Anyway besides records sounding fantastic when you clean them and your analog front end is decent I get a kick out of what you can find in thrift shops and garage or estate sales. Most people just don't have a clue. Last week for a dollar at the local Out of the Closet I picked up an Original pressing of Randy Newman/12 songs in mint shape. Ry Cooder plays guitar and slide on this baby!
Fun at the Thrift Shops:
I just returned from a hunting expedition at St. Vincent De Paul with 28 albums at $1 ea. Everything I picked up today ranges from VG++ to NM or opened but unplayed. It's a good thing I like classical; I picked some Sibelius, an opera or two, a boxed set of Bach organ stuff, etc. I also got the Reader's Digest/RCA 7-LP collection of '40s Big Band Swing. All 7 LPs in it are unplayed. Also picked up 11 Windham Hill records, of which at least half were recorded direct-to-2-channel on analog 1/2" running at 30ips and half-speed mastered either at MoFi or JVC.
A couple weeks ago I picked up a "real" Everest LP of Mozart wind ensembles, originally recorded on 35mm mag tape. Record looks like it's been through a war zone, but still has that uncanny "in the room" sensation.
I have gotten that too, when returning a record via UPS. People seem astounded and curious. I got some of that same treatment for a couple years when I started driving a new mini cooper (people kept telling me "I used to have one of those in the 60s, do they still make them?").
I got back into vinyl (after a 20 year hiatus) not because people my age (middle age) were into it, but because I noticed all the young people were getting into it. My son (20 at the time) had roommates his age who only listened to vinyl. I went on to discover how all the DJs were still doing vinyl, the local record shops were mainly selling to a young crowd. I was also reading hi-fi magazines (something the young people definitely don't do) and realizing the great sound quality of vinyl. Now my son and I are both vinyl fanatics, although our tastes in music differ considerably.
These days, vinyl seems in a real resurgence. A local CD shop that had long since dumped vinyl now has devoted a good chunk of their shop to vinyl, and other shops have expanded their vinyl collections. They say they are thankful for vinyl because CD sales are gradually going away. Nobody cares about CDs when they can download. You can't download vinyl. I predict most music shops will be gone in ten years, with only the vinyl shops remaining. Everything else will be downloaded or more likely just streamed live on demand.
Me too. It was my 20-year-old stepson, who found an old B.I.C. 912 in the garage, who hooked it up and got it running, and then kept bugging me to take him to some used record stores. Then one day we were out and he spied a garage sale with audio equipment. After a 25-year vinyl hiatus, I bought a Yamaha belt drive TT for $2, and then I got hooked too. 2 weeks later I bought my Technics SL1210 m5g and Shure M97xE. Since then (6 weeks ago) I've acquired over 100 LPs.
The scary thing about all this is that it shows what "sheep" many of us are simply because we have been trained to believe what we see and hear on TV and in the media.
Orwell was on target despite the fact that so many of us born in the late fifties that read his book in greade school are now seeing the effects of countless lies.
Throw enough money at any corner of the world and you can create "truth" there.
LPs always sounded better than CDs, I intuitively knew that but fought that for about 10 years, trying convince myself that CDs were superior as the mainstream tried to convince me until I finally had earned the resources to improve my vinyl playback equipment. I always get incredulous looks when new friends come into my home and see the turntable and the records. And they ask me why and I say because they sound better, and I get the unconvinced looks, and then I play the Count Basie Chairman of the Board on Classic and they remark WOW.
Writing this as I sip coffee and listen to Sonic Youth's Daydream Nation on CD through the tube system on a rainy Oregon Earth Day morning.
Good thing you didn't discuss any Elrod Power cables with them John. They would have thought you crazy for sure, LOL!
I love it when folks walk in to the listening room and say "OMG is that a record!!??" I tell em "Yes, someone took real good care of that one!! You can't get that kind of sound on the ipad listening to mp3 files coming from earbuds can you? And why is that so surprising???
I read the sly cynicism above along with the humor and the earnestness; look, it is up to us to help educate and be resourceful when helping others understand what it is we enjoy and "get" when it comes to vinyl. Remember, for many, music is wallpaper. For me, it is an essential part of my health plan.
People in their late 40s would have come of age, their teens, about the time that LPs were disappearing from the record store shelves and cds and cassette were taking over, so they witnessed the demise, and probably thought it was all over. Their lp experience was most likely their parents old albums and console player. so its not surprising they are out of the loop. Today, its mostly those approaching 60 or young people discovering LP for the first time.
I am 37 years old and have been collecting clean and enjoyable 33 1/3 rpm lps for the past 20 years. Well, most of them are clean and enjoyable. Yes, when I was a child the folks had a Zenith hi-fi with a pair of 8" full range drivers and a decent Shure cartridge. It amazed me that that kind of sound came off of that spinning piece of wax, dug out by a little "needle"! Then came 8tracks and cassettes(good God help us, we were all fooled)! After the introduction of cds... well the cds sucked too, and down deep we all know it's true, can somebody say "my ears are bleeding". I left out reel to reel because even though the sound was great, that was just not mainstream stuff that everyone had. Anyway, my point is, there are probably lots of other thirty-somethings out there like me who love the liquorice pizza too!
I just had an interesting experience. A friend came over for a hifi listening session. This was a new experience for him as he had not yet experienced a proper high resolution audio system before. When I took the first LP out of the sleeve, he was shocked! "Wait, you're playing records?! I thought you would have CDs in a fancy stereo like this.". He was impressed by the vinyl. Ironically, I do not own a CD player.
There is a vintage furniture/clothes/knickknack shop in Vancouver, WA (across the Columbia River from Portland, OR) I visit about once a month. When I was there this week I noticed a lot more vendors (each of whom has an area on the floor) offering LP’s. Mostly the usual 70’s/80’s dreck, but some good stuff too. Some of the LP’s looked like they had never been played. Customers at Barnes & Noble would have a hard time not noticing the increasingly large racks of new LP’s the store is (presumably) selling.