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Davis ThinkingDavis Thinking } analysis and interpretation

In Which I Wax Poetic About Vinyl

Monday, January 21, 2008

Time recently ran a story about the resurgence of records . This makes me happy.

I listen to my iPod every day, and I have hundreds of CDs, but my records mean the most to me. Records are fragile things that require care and consideration. Because they are slightly awkward and can be ruined easily, they make music feel and sound that much more precious and important. When so much these days feels like air, like nothing at all, records feel real .

Playing records is immensely comforting in its ritual … taking the record out of the sleeve and placing the needle carefully upon it, listening closely to make sure it all sounds OK, the quietness when the turntable politely lifts the needle and places the arm back in its cradle … records motivate us to pay attention to music in a way that CDs and MP3s do not.

Even though Amazon introduced a vinyl-only store , I hope that people never stop going to record stores. I love flipping through stacks of used records and whenever I have had a chance to do so at a legendary store, like Amoeba Music , it is pure pleasure. Each of my records has a little story behind it. I remember where I got it, and when. I remember the conversation I had with the record store dude when I paid for them. Records were literally currency for me when I was the dudette working at the record store during college. After each shift, I got paid in records. The compensation was more than adequate.

I remember a good friend of mine in college once saying to me how much he loved having and listening to records. He said each one of his records is like a gift to be unwrapped and discovered time and time again. He was so right.

Time’s article was titled “Vinyl Gets it’s Groove Back.”  I hope that, like Stella herself, vinyl LPs can continue to flex their proverbial biceps and never be taken for granted again.

**to read more articles by this author, click on the name under the headline**

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