Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Music Shelf: Introduction

Greetings again.

I know I'm not regular with this blog in any way, shape or form, but I hope I can start soon.

An idea popped into my head after playing "Thriller" on my turntable. Why don't I start going through my vinyl collection, reviewing my albums and talking about their impact they have on me? It could be fun.

I have been a vinyl enthusiast and collector since 2010, and have amassed more than 100 albums. Some highlights of my collection include the aforementioned "Thriller," "Back in Black," "Led Zeppelin IV," and "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band." I am always on the lookout for interesting and unique items for my  collection.

Although a niche market, vinyl records have made a comeback, and sales have been growing since 2008. There were 4.6 million vinyl records sold in 2012.

So why has a seemingly dead format returned? There are a few reasons.

For starters, you’re more involved in the album compared to MP3's, from removing it from the sleeve, placing it on the turntable, and putting the needle on the record. Also, while listening, you have album art, and liner notes (in some cases) to get lost in while listening.  In some cases, you can find little surpises in albums that you didn’t expect to find, such as posters that originally came with the album, as was the case with my copy of "The Gambler" by Kenny Rogers.

In addition, vinyl records have a sound quality that MP3’s and even CD’s cannot compare with. Most recording is done in analog format, even when it is converted to digital. Digital recordings feel colder than the warmer analog sound. Also, because there is a limit to the levels of recording, you don’t get albums that are too loud like you do today. 

Plus, it forces you to listen to the entire work, discovering some hidden gems. We don't have that anymore.

My plan is to review "Thriller" in the next couple of days, and then select an album from my shelf and go from there. I still plan to talk about other elements of media if the motivation strikes me.