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Record Collecting

Bored with collecting normal vinyl? Here are examples of abnormal vinyl.

[This was my weekly column for GlobalNews.ca. – AC]

Last weekend, I spent a couple of hours at the semi-annual Downtown Record Show in Toronto. I brought along my usual amount of gambling money, $200, and started digging through the crates and boxes looking for … I don’t know, really. Treasure? Something I didn’t know I needed? A lost record from my youth?

After two hours, I gave up, discouraged. I’d bought two things: a Nick Drake compilation (I’m really trying to up my game when it comes to British folk of the 1970s) and a six-CD set of jazz recordings compiled by the Smithsonian (another weak spot for me). Nothing else I saw really sparked any kind of joy.

Maybe I have too many records already (about 7,000, if you must ask). Maybe the thrill of the chase has worn off. Or maybe I just need some new goals when it comes to collecting. Rather than looking for the same-old, same-old, perhaps I should start searching for more weird and extreme stuff.

I’m not talking about another whacko Leonard Nimoy album (he recorded more than a few like The Two Sides of Leonard Nimoy or Japanese ultra-noise from Merzbow. (You can hear a sample of Merzbow on YouTube, and no, nothing is wrong with your device.) No, I mean something extremely specialized, very rare, and highly personal. Let’s call them “DNA records.”

Here’s where it gets weird. Keep reading.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38463 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

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