The days before digital music

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I remember that good old days before digital music came our way. Listening to music that was on vinyl was more of a religious experience.

Do you remember rummaging through albums in your favorite music store? Flipping from one section to another. Noticing the old one that you already have in your collection at home. Having flashbacks of when you first took the plastic off it, putting it on your turntable and in the back of your mind noticing that you should change your stylist soon?

Now you gently cue up the turntable arm/needle over the part of the record that gives you a couple of seconds to first gently place the cover on it, then grab the album cover and open it up to where the lyrics are. It was like performing a holy sacrament.

Just a side note here: did anyone out there have a scratch on one of their favourite platters of vinyl that skipped during a small portion of a song? The only way to rectify it was to put a penny on the arm and hope for the best. Think of it as an early version of a software patch?!

If your record cover was quite old, it may of had a distinctive scent that reminded you of some special event that took place while listening to it. Mine mostly smelled of spilled beer, ha! Also some of the art work on them were really … well works of art! What was your favorite album cover? I had too many to chose from.

Speaking of works of art, my buddy Jon had this great album from Leon Redbone. I remember hearing it tons of time at his place when he was married. We thought that it was a master piece … but his ex-wife not so much! One day when Jon was practicing with his band, she went ahead and turned it into a popcorn bowl! Does this look familiar Pinhead (you know I love ya brother!)?

I still have this one moment that will etched into my mind forever. When I was in elementary school, we started this Kiss tribute band called Deuce. Kiss had just released this one song Beth, that was on their classic vinyl 1976 record called Destroyer. This tune was played on the piano though and I had only goofed around on this instrument from time to time. That day this song kept playing in my mind over and over again. I just sat there in my desk in a dream state. I could only imagine the keyboard, trying to figure it out in my little brain.

I then literally ran home to the piano and attempted to play it. I was able to get only 1/4 of the way through the song despite working on it all night long. The following day I told my mom that I was sick and that I had to stay home. Sure enough she bought it and I was able to finish figuring it out. The day that I returned to school I played it on the school piano to my buddy’s amazement.

I still get excited about figuring out a song that I have on new CD or one that I’ve found on Youtube but it’s still not the same as the old vinyl record! I’m lost for words on this topic.

Now a days it’s not quite the same. Sure you can go to a record/CD store and peruse through their collections. Talk to others close by about certain bands or other related things but it’s not the same. Most people out there today are just too self absorbed in their own world to even bother … well maybe not everyone, I’ll talk to anybody.

Today the many ways we have to access our favorite music seems sterile to me. You first turn on your computer, go to a site, do a search and then quickly download your favorite tunes. iTunes or iPods, what is your preferred choice of downloading?

Most people I know just get a single tune from a band and that’s it. The old way you were forced to get the entire album and be exposed to some songs that you don’t like at first. After listening to those ones a couple of times, some actually grow on you to become great tunes! Remember all those B side songs?

So am I being too overly dramatic here or do I have a point?

Keep on Jammin’




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