Times are good for vinyl. The format was all but dead until some desperate independent record store owners in Baltimore invented Record Store Day in 2008. Since then we’ve seen double-digit increases in vinyl sales year after year. In fact, things are so good that in several countries, the revenue derived from the sale of vinyl exceeds that of compact discs. We haven’t seen anything like that since the 1980s.
What’s driving this boom? Many things, from perceived audio quality to the ability to physically display the music you love in your home. “Look at how many linear feet my record collection takes up! Not only that, but I’ve hitched my wagon to a format that isn’t portable and requires me to purchase special equipment based on technology originally conceived 125 years ago! That’s how much I love music!”
Vinyl is something you can hold in your hand. It’s got weight, heft. Plus there’s the tactile requirements of handling the disc itself, the liner notes, the lyric sheets, and everything else that goes with a physical music format.”
Once you’re smitten, it’s a short leap into collecting interesting records. You start hitting used record stores, weekend record stores, and scout sites like Discogs.com and eBay to fill the gaps in your library.
And then there’s the final leap: You become a hardcore collector and start to look at vinyl as an investment. You begin to lust after records that are insanely rare, very valuable, and very expensive. When you acquire such a record, you may keep it, hoping that it will continue to appreciate in value. Or you flip it and make a few bucks on the transaction.
But beware. Some of these records cost hundreds, thousands, tens of thousands and in a few special cases, hundreds of thousands of dollars.
What are these records? Where can you find them? And what’s it gonna cost me? This is a tour through some very valuable vinyl. And hey, maybe one of these records is in your music library right now.
Songs heard on this show:
- The Tweeds, I Need That Record
- U2, Pride (In the Name of Love)
- White Stripes, Lafayette Blues
- Nirvana, Love Buzz
- Joy Division, Leaders of Men
- The Cure, Foxy Lady
- David Bowie, Rebel Rebel
- Velvet Underground, Waiting for the Man (Norman Dolph acetate)
- Sex Pistols, God Save the Queen
Here’s Eric Wilhite’s playlist.
The Ongoing History of New Music can be heard on the following stations:
- 102.1 The Edge/Toronto – Sunday night at 7
- Live 88-5/Ottawa
- 107.5 Dave-FM/Kitchener
- Power 97/Winnipeg
- Sonic 102.9/Edmonton
- The Zone/Victoria
- The Fox/Vancouver
- Surge 105/Halifax
- WAPS/WKTL The Summit/Arkon, Canton, Cleveland, Youngstown
We’re still looking for more affiliates in Calgary, Kamloops, Kelowna, Regina, Saskatoon, Brandon, Windsor, Montreal, Charlottetown, Moncton, Fredericton, and St John’s, and anywhere else with a transmitter. If you’re in any of those markets and you want the show, lemme know and I’ll see what I can do.