Why do you collect records?

edited March 2012 in Strut Central
It might sound like a stupid question but it's a valid one. I know some people on here are DJ's, producers, ect ect. But is there a deeper meaning for you?


  • bassiebassie 11,710 Posts
    I love music and records are my preferred format.
    I play records out as well - just records, not CDs or Serato.

  • RAJRAJ tenacious local 7,779 Posts
    It started with nostalgia, then I preferred the sound, the smell, the feel, the hunt???. Even the expedite filled with records is very zen like??? not going to get that with a wall o' tapes or CDs.

  • leonleon 883 Posts
    For me it started with gripping music that was not availiable in another format. This has been the case until fairly recently and still is on some level. Now, it's a way of getting to know new music, the hunt, a really nice way to get to know a new city.

    So, for me it's not about collecting, but anyone who looks at the rekkids i accumulated over the years will tell me otherwise...
    I got an iPod as big as a room you might say.

  • bassiebassie 11,710 Posts
    leon said:

    So, for me it's not about collecting

    Yes. I used to rage against the term, but just go with it now.

    I feel the same....'collecting' takes the music element out of it for me. I buy music I like/love in the format that sounds and feels best to me; not things that happen to be records the way people do with salt and pepper shakers.

  • For me it started with the record shop itself,
    in adolescence anyway, when I could venture
    downtown to the independent record shop.
    Unbeknownst to me at the time what an
    "independent record shop" was - it just felt
    cool there. To this day I'll never forget seeing
    The Smith's "Louder Than Bombs" in the new
    release section. I had been into records before
    that, but only purchased them at K-Marts or
    Richman Gordmans when I would tag along
    with my mom when she went shopping. But
    once I hit my teens and discovered the cool
    record spots downtown - it was on. 42 now
    and travel all over for work and always hit
    the record spots in whatever city I happen to
    be in. Also, pretty much without fail, I get
    turned onto new music being played over
    the store sound system.

  • it was what I grew up doing from being a child, and I never 'got' cd's. I don't want to hear the kick drum squeaking on a digitally remastered stereo cd version of howlin wolf 'killing floor, i want to to put the needle on the mono original lp and feel the sound burst out of the speakers like fire, crackes or no crackles, who cares.

  • i want to to put the needle on the mono original lp and feel the sound burst out of the speakers like fire, crackes or no crackles, who cares.
    Vinyl records develop such nice character over time -
    a patina if you will. It's as if you break them in... the
    ones you play over and over anyway. Like a favorite

  • It started with my dad. He didn't have a big collection or anything, but he had a nice jazz collection that he would play in the house and that got me into jazz music. As I would listen to the record I would read the record cover and read about who the artist was and who performed alongside them and what label produced the album. So from there I would go out and search for those artists and look for the labels that I knew about. It branched out from jazz into bossa nova jazz, then from bossa nova jazz to Brazilian music, then from Brazilian music to African and Caribbean music, and then it went into me just browsing throughout an entire store and finding music and artists that I would come to enjoy.

    As for why I collect, I guess it's just the joy that comes from exploration. And the sound.

  • GrandfatherGrandfather 2,303 Posts
    I started because or rap music. I love rap, I wanted to be a dj and cut and all that. I bought rap singles/albums as much as possible.
    Went into other genres of music after that.

  • It all starts with love of music for me, and nostalgia is a big part of it since it's what my dad played when I was a kid.

    Big cosign on a few points others have made above:
    1) It's the best format--the ritual involved, the intimacy, the artwork, the warmth of the sound--remain unmatched
    2) There's so much amazing music that still isn't available on any other format
    3) The thrill of the hunt, discovering new music (especially when it's by accident or you take a chance on something unknown)

    Another big thing for me is the connection to the past that comes with listening to the music the way it was originally consumed. The "time capsule" effect or whatever you wanna call it. A CD or iPod full of stuff from the 60s, while convenient for travel, is just so distant and disconnected from the way people actually listened to it when it came out.

  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts
    Hey Gomez80,

    I collect records because I have a genotypic affinity to music. I was born into a musical family wherein my father (RIP) sang and played drums, my mother sings, my brother plays saxophone, drums, and sings, and myself, I play drums, keyboards, produce hip-hop/R&B tracks, DJ, and sing. Dad taught me how to play drums at 5 years of age, after seeing my beat on pots and pans, toys, etc., realizing I had a natural ability and propensity toward playing drums. My father introduced my brother and I to music very early in life (e.g., jazz, soul, and gospel), signing us up in the Columbia Record Club when I was merely 5 years old (and my brother was 8). Initially, pop picked the LPs to buy, with us taking the reigns of collecting when we got older. I own a great many of those original LPs to this very day, with the exception of some my brother sold in the early 90s from his part of the collection. Then, my pops younger brother Phillip introduced us to varying styles of music beyond soul (e.g., rock and reggae), and I progressively ventured more widely into other genres (e.g., punk, electro, psychedelic rock, hip-hop, soul jazz, etc.). So, suffice it to say, music has been an integral part of my life from day one as a performer, listener, and also, an audiophile since dad was a 'sound guy', so to speak. It's crazy, but I owned Bose 301s and BIC Ventura speakers as a pre-teen and teenager, respectively, with top-quality accompanying components to match (i.e., receiver/amplifier, turntables, cassette/CD players). Being an audiophile, vinyl is my preferred music format given its warm sound quality. Plus, I absolutely love cover art and reading linear notes obsessively!!! I can't imagine my life without music, it's the soundtrack of my existence here on earth.


    Big Stacks from Kakalak

  • oripsorips 238 Posts
    gomez80 said:
    But is there a deeper meaning for you?

    No deeper meaning for me except for the sheer volume of music pressed on vinyl. Where else can you find obscure soul, funk, disco, jazz, rock, pop and reggae that was put out by local artists on fly-by-night labels before the advent of CDs?

    I initially bought music on tapes and CDs in the 80s-90s, but discovered in 2000 that vinyl was a cheaper option compared to CD reissues/compilations. I made the switch and haven't looked back since, although I still search out cassettes (rap, soul, comps.) at thrift shops.

  • CBearCBear 902 Posts
    For me it's changed over time. It started out because my mom gave me disney read-along 45 story books. Back then it was how people listened to music. Then in high school, I probably did it because it was cool. In college, I was into turntablism and DJing and there was no Serato. After college, I realized that if I bought a CD for $15 that it would never be worth more than $3 after that. But, if I bought the record, it would likely go up in value. In the last 5 years, I've come to really appreciate listening to entire albums. The sound quality is fantastic now that I have a good stereo and turntable. I love the history that comes with each record, talking to the people I buy them from, and listening to the stories they tell about their lives when they listened to those albums. It feels real somehow. I like the feeling of being physically surrounded by great music in my record room. I like the art. I have all David Stone Martin covers up on my wall right now. I love hunting for them. Each one is a treasure is to me. I could pull any record off my shelves, and say, "oh my god, THIS.....". I like taking care of them, cleaning them, sleeving them, carefully handling them. I feel like I'm preserving history for future generations. It's likely that no one will care, but that doesn't stop me. I like old people's nostalgic reactions when they find out that I like/collect them.

  • buttonbutton 1,475 Posts
    All of the above, plus the stewardship factor. Some cringe at this sort of talk, but I DO like the preservationist element. The notion that you're taking care of something that most people don't have the time, money, or patience to. Sharing your haul with friends and strangers is always great too.

  • yuichiyuichi Urban sprawl 11,331 Posts
    gomez80 said:
    It might sound like a stupid question but it's a valid one. I know some people on here are DJ's, producers, ect ect. But is there a deeper meaning for you?

    Over the years, I much like others have amassed a collection. Even though I don't buy as many records as I used to, it's kinda nice having a small library at your disposal when you feel like listening to something crackling out the speakers. Cover artwork is bigger, and usually has an oldness that adds character to it. Also, records have monetary value, which is probably another reason why it adds to the thrill of finding a "crazy record for cheap". You're less likely to find that with CDs.

  • MurdockMurdock 542 Posts
    I have to ... it's the only thing that relaxes me ... I feel like I'm the last era to see it as a lifestyle ... dig, dj, make beats ...

  • pickwick33pickwick33 8,946 Posts
    Vinyl was still a conmtemporary format when I first started buying it, as a kid in the 70s. I just never saw a reason to stop.

  • dj_cityboydj_cityboy 1,461 Posts
    i aint lying, i just wanted to be like Dj Jazzy Jeff, Mr Mixx & Dj Aladdin...of course none of that happened..lol, not to mention i was pretty sure back than in order to be hiphop you had to make beats and get your samples from records...so obviously i needed to have records, it wasnt until a few years later i figure out that rappers werent making tapes loops out of record samples and rapping over them and they were doing it all another way...92ish is when i figured it out...i just needed more records and now gear to sample and loop beats with.

  • DelayDelay 4,530 Posts
    i started buying old records because they were cheap and i was broke. now they're expensive again

  • Controller_7Controller_7 4,052 Posts
    Mainly because of rap. Couldn't get certain things on cd. I started buying 12 inches before I owned a turntable. After that, I wanted to start making the beats like on the records I was buying. I got curious and then went with it.

  • Controller_7Controller_7 4,052 Posts
    Much less of a collector, more of a "bought a lot of records" guy. I have holes in some of my favorite artists' catalogs and I feel no need to complete them.

  • sabadabadasabadabada 5,966 Posts
    No better sound than a high fidelity mono record played through a tube amp.

  • pickwick33pickwick33 8,946 Posts
    sabadabada said:
    No better sound than a high fidelity mono record played through a tube amp.

    and then turning up the reverb to make it sound "electronically rechanneled for stereo."

    I don't do this all the time, but every now and then I get the urge to hook up the turntable to my Fender tweed amp. Just spinnin' one monophonic 45 after another.

    Partially inspired by this photo of David Johansen at home with his then-lover, Cyrinda Foxe:

  • pickwick33pickwick33 8,946 Posts

  • pickwick33pickwick33 8,946 Posts
    (another deleted post - accidental repeat)

  • phatmoneysackphatmoneysack Melbourne 1,124 Posts
    DJing fuelled my interest in collecting records and collecting records has maintained my interest in DJing.

    To me they are one and the same.


  • Because I love the smell of cat pee and the idea of winning the lottery and still not being able to buy happiness

  • ReynaldoReynaldo 6,054 Posts
    I want to keep upgrading until all of my records are NM. There's nothing quite like pulling out records one by one and marveling at their flawless NM-ness.
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