Today is the first day of the Blog Me MAYbe blogfest, a flexible blogfest running through the month of May. Tuesdays are themed “May I tell you something about myself?” I’ve been a complete vinyl junkie since I was at least 20 years old, and now far prefer vinyl to CDs. It just sounds deeper and richer. I’ve even bought vinyl copies of albums I already have on CD, and many times, the sound is far superior and contains stuff that was inexplicably remastered away. I prefer stuff from the past to anything modern, so all my favorite bands were on vinyl long before they were on CD or MP3.
My favoritest record store is Mystery Train Records on North Pleasant Street in Amherst, Massachusetts. I’m told they’ve since moved a little up the street and now have a two-story building (they used to be a basement store), and that the atmosphere just isn’t the same. I’ve also gotten some of my albums from B-Side Records and Dynamite Records in Northampton, and from the Albany and Saratoga branches of Last Vestige Records in New York. A few I’ve gotten from eBay.
Just a small sampling of pictures of my big vinyl collection:
I won Bookends on eBay as a college graduation present for myself in 2002, after it kept failing to show up at any of the local record stores. Magical Mystery Tour, the only repackaging Capitol Records got right, was $2 and marked as-is because it has a skip on “I Am the Walrus.” It feels weird to hear the song on the radio and not hear that skip in that place. The album on its side is Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn, & Jones Ltd., my favorite Monkees’ album in a pinch.
My Monkees’ albums; the naked album is More of The Monkees, which I found in the free bin. The others are John Lennon’s Walls and Bridges, my favoritest album Quadrophenia, and The Beatles: 1962-1966 (better-known as The Red Album).
You don’t always make a name for yourself with your debut effort. This record barely made a ripple when it came out in October ’64, but when “Sounds of Silence” hit #1 on New Year’s Day 1966, everything changed.
Sometimes the artwork on the reverse side is just as pretty, or prettier, than the cover art!
I took this photo of myself shortly after I finished my Russian novel sequel in November. Of course Hashem (God) had the most to do with it, but I couldn’t have done it completely on my own. Having a good soundtrack also helps a lot with writing. It feels so euphoric to have just completed a 406,000-word novel! It also feels great to be able to cross your legs Indian-style when once upon a time you couldn’t walk for 11 months and at one point even had some hideous, painful external fixator in your right leg.