Technology And The Record

Rant one on technology

Technology killed the record. I grew up with records, I like records and now they hardly exist. There is a whole generation of people now that have no idea what it was like, to go to a record store and sift through hundreds of records. You had great album art, some times a poster and the lyrics on the inside cover. You walked out of the store with another treasure for your collection. You did not just go to a record store to buy, you spent some time digging for something special and listening to the tunes.

Once CDs came along they changed the buying experience, every CD locked in the hard plastic case, nothing to take out and open up, no lyrics or poster to check out. I think parents may have liked that, no more crap to hang on the newly pained walls. It now became just shopping, run in and grab the hard plastic case and wow were they expensive at the start.

Records were something we opened, collected and had rows of, all your favorite artists. There was nothing like opening one of your favorite albums and placing that record on the turntable, lowering the needle, and hearing the crackle of that needle on the vinyl. Some would argue it was a better sound, more pure than the digital version of today.

I had a whole stereo system at one time with the turntable sitting proudly at the top of the stack, right on top of the receiver, a tape deck surrounded by speakers. We could drop a record on the turntable, pop in a blank cassette (those are gone too) and make a perfect copy of that album. You would sit in your room listing to the records, making tapes and having your parents yell at you to turn that crap down.

This whole experience has changed. You don’t shop for records, even CDs are virtually a thing of the past and it is all streaming now. For under 10 bucks a month you could listen to anything on iTunes. Little Timmy is not headbanging away with the record turned up, he sits in a corner with little white buds hanging out of his ears and phone in hand.

Technology is great but it does take something away too, a link to your past, the experience of putting a record on a turntable and hearing the crackle of vinyl, rows of records in a collection, the memory and nostalgia that go along with that music. I love the fact I can hear a song from a TV show and just add it to Itunes in seconds but I do miss those records, those memories, and the past.

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