Jim Carroll

Music, Life and everything else

Putting the needle back on the record

The record collecting bug returns

Jackie's back

Wed, Jan 18, 2017, 10:01


You’ll find my piece on dusty grooves, old stereo equipment and rediscovering the pleasure of vinyl here. After a few days in New York and some happy hours digging in the crates, it’s a theme I can see myself returning to again in the future.

The piece attracted a heck of a lot more attention than I expected, chiefly because I’m not alone, for once, in this regard. I heard from someone else pointing out the freaky coincidence of his own Pro-Ject/Denon/Aiwa set-up to comments around the questionable quality of new records. One of the biggest bugbears for many is the price of new records. It’s something I’ve noticed myself: Golden Discs, especially, seem to be having a laugh with the prices they’ve stuck on new releases. I really wonder if people are paying that kind of wedge for a Neil Young album. I was hugley impressed by the selection at Tower Records and most of them were a lot more keenly priced than I was expecting to see.

One of the questions I have is why we’re not seeing a few more secondhand record shops around the place, given the huge amount of old vinyl records which must be out there. Surely all those albums didn’t end up going into landfill in the late 1990s? Of course, there’s probably more wedge to be made if you’re in the record-retailing business from selling new releases and those deluxe editions and reissues (and that’s before we start going on about commercial rents), but then again, if there’s room in the world for a place like The Thing, there must surely be room for a few more stores like it.