Friday, January 27, 2012

Reasons To Be Cheerful - # 8

A box of records, earlier

This is my box of records, but it could be anyone's - maybe yours.

It's not all of them of course; there's a load on a shelf in the cupboard upstairs - a load less than there used to be, mind (because children there once was a dark time when it seemed the Silvery Discs had triumphed and the things we also had on LP wouldn't be played, and in that dark time some of us were persuaded - oh fools! - to give 'duplicate' records away....dark days, as I say).

These are the select few, the special ones, these ones in the box; the ones that will come out on a Sunday when the potatoes are roasting and I have cracked a pre-lunch Pride; the ones I'd take with me in the event of the housefire of popular imagining; precious mint things I bought decades ago in Ray's Jazz, the old mono and stereo Sinatras with their wonderful sleeves and even more wonderful sleevenotes ('It had begun like the World Soft Championships...') Glen Campbell's 20 Golden Greats (a Sunday staple) Frankie Laine (ditto - for Mum), La Variete by Weekend, Peggy Lee, a load of old soul, Nuggets, some more recent finds I've written about here.

When I open the box there's a whiff of good plastic. Don't put too many in, that's the key - it'll cramp your flicking; you need space and the little puff of air as one falls forward to another, and to pull one out without squeezing and read something on the back, fascinated, or admire (once more) the front cover and put it back again, with a smile.

And to make your selection - lift the needle, pop it on.

'I am a lineman for the County...'

This is my box of records, but it could be anyone's - maybe yours.

Young Marble Giants - 'Wurlitzer Jukebox!' (1980) [vinyl rip]


  1. I don't own any vinyl anymore. Haven't done for about 5 years. Apart from 7" singles though I hated vinyl. I hated crackles and pops and scratches, I hated the low grade wobbly vinyl that was the default during the 80s, I hated sound that deteriorated the more I played it, I hated my slick shiny ABC's Lexicon Of Love disappearing into the murk.

    I did love 7"s though. Going Underground on 7" sounding so punchy, that final bass note blowing one of the speakers on my cheap first record player. Doesn't do that on CD or MP3!

  2. ooh word veri: 'amplisms'

    Part music buff, but also almost 'ample'. Ah.

  3. lovely!

    And some of yours are certainly mine ... La Variete only on the plattenspieler a few days back!

    Shirl's also got a YMG track on the next mix she's noodling about with ... if she keeps noodling about with it much longer its gonna get rather soggy!


  4. Weird coincidence Mr H. Last night I ordered a new 7" case for my soul as I had decided that they warrant their own box.

    I love the smell of vinyl, it always makes hy heart just beat that little bit faster and invokes recollections of wishing the train home from Glasgow would go quicker so I could get home and listen to my latest purchases.

    Contrary to Simon, I love the crackles and pops and have always hated those soulless silver discs.

    I'm sure you have seen this before but here are my boxes.

  5. Do you have a picture of your box you'd like to share? Drop us a line!

    Excessive noodling is always a risk with these things, mr.K.

  6. PS: Smoni - you are right about some of that 80s-90s vinyl not lasting well. Au contraire, Sinatra records from the 50s and 60s, and any LPs on Blue Note or Verve, always sound superb.

  7. And Stax on CD - faggeddabowdit.

  8. yeah, I had some original sixties and early 70s vinyl of varying musical styles and it was heavy compared to say the 'nice price' releases in the 80s. Some of that was almost transparent.

    Funnily enough for me 60s soul was always on cassette; it was my dad's choice of music for the car, and the only way I could get hold of some things via the medium of mixtape.

  9. Scratchy 80s vinyl on my Northern Soul Kent compilations made it difficult to dance to some things!!!

  10. I've still got most of my old vinyl - hoarders like me rarely 'out' much. It's not boxed though, just lofted - with no index or order. You can peek at a few pieces hereabouts

  11. Trax records were pressed on the cheapest of cheap vinyl my copy of Acid Tracks was absolutely awful and cost a fortune at the time as it was an import.

  12. Post of the Week!

    I had 'a moment' there. A sort of nostalgic senses-overload-arousal; tightening both the gusset and the heart. There's something about the opening of a special box that will never be replicated by mp3/iTunes clickety click immediacy.

    Any road, am out tonight after a couple of domestic liveners. Gentlemens' Sportsmans' Dinner at Headingley (correct the apostrophes). MC, memorabilia auction and a 'blue' comedian. It's all in aid of a Support Group for Rubinstein-Taybi Syndrome (identified in the 60s as a collection of symptoms due to chromosomal defect). It affects many families and there is no cure. More at

    So ... finger through your dusty gatefolds and enjoy your weekend, you lovely people.

  13. Vinyl forever. The smell of it, the sleeves and inner sleeves, the crackle of needle on groove, the pops and static (I love a bit of pop and static on an mp3), the flipping it over, the filing it away, the way it looks all the edges of those sleeves lined up in the alcoves in our front room, the universal adaptor for ex-jukebox singles, stacking singles up on a dansette, making a spindle hole a little bit bigger with a biro. It's future proof- come the day they turn the internet off and 'the cloud' vanishes and youtube vanishes vinyl can still be played. Viva vinyl.

  14. Beautiful, beautiful.

    Watch yerself out there Dickie my lad.

  15. Bet there's a couple of Smiths things in yer box Davey

  16. The Sundays will be in there.

  17. No no, not so - I have all that sort of thing on the iPo and it's plugged into the dock and I'll play it from there. These are the kind of LP Only things. Not necessarily My Favourite Records Ever. More, some beautiful artifacts - Sunday appropriate, ya kna'?

    I will issue a complete inventory of what is in the box in due course if required. You may be surprised, you may not. But I need to get me supermarket curries on first, yeh?

  18. So what are we talking about, Horace Silver or Coltrane? Wayne Shorter and co? There's probably a copy of War Of The Worlds in there. And that cheapo compilation of all the film themes.

  19. And a fair bit of MFP and Pickwick.

  20. I've blethered on about loads of these over the years. I probably planned to blether on about many more.

    Am I doing the right thing?

    I feel like I'm opening up my very soul.

    *takes deep breath, swigs coffee, flicks and types*

    Front to back:

    Working Week - 'Companeros'
    Herbie Hancock - 'Rockit' b/w 'Bet Your Love' & 'Thought It Was You' (12")
    Lotus Eaters - 'The First Picture Of You' (12")
    Working Week - 'Venceremos (We Will Win)' (12")
    John Barry - 'Original Movie Soundtrack - The Deep'
    Working Week - 'Working Nights'
    Weekend - 'La Variete'
    Various Artists - 'Brasil Classics 1 - Beleza Tropical: Compiled By David Byrne'
    Frankie Laine - 'The Best Of Frankie Laine'
    Glen Campbell - 'Glen Campbell's 20 Golden Greats'
    Eddie Floyd - 'The Best Of Eddie Floyd'
    Michael Jackson - 'Thriller'
    Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings - 'I Learned The Hard Way'
    Candi Staton/Bettye Swann - 'Tell It Like It Is'
    Bobby Womack - 'Womagic'
    Stevie Wonder - 'Innervisions'
    Various Artists - 'Stax Soul Explosion'
    Various Artists - 'Shove It! The Essential 70s Soul Album'
    Various Artists - 'Nuggets - Volume Three: Pop'
    Various Artists - 'Nuggets - Volume Five; Pop, Part III'
    Billy Cobham - 'Simplicity Of Expression, Depth Of Thought'
    Miles Davis - 'The Birth Of The Cool'
    Miles Davis - 'Porgy & Bess'
    Miles Davis Quintet - 'Miles Smiles'
    Duke Ellington - 'Ellington At Newport'
    Duke Ellington - 'Such Sweet Thunder'
    Duke Ellington - 'The Symphonic Ellington'
    Duke Ellington - 'New Orleans Suite'
    Bill Evans/Jim Hall - 'Undercurrent'
    Ella Fitzgerald - 'Ella Fitzgerald Sings The Rodgers And Hart Songbook'
    Stan Getz - 'Stan Getz With Guest Artist Laurindo Almeida'
    Stan Getz - 'Apasionado'
    Billie Holiday - '16 Classic Tracks'
    Billie Holiday - 'Songs For Distingue Lovers'
    Peggy Lee - 'The Best Of Peggy Lee'
    Courtney Pine - 'Songs From Our Underground, Part One' (12")
    Horace Silver Quintet & Trio - 'Blowin' The Blues Away'
    Nina Simone - 'My Baby Just Cares
    For Me'
    Nina Simone - 'It Is Finished - 1974'
    Gabor Szabo - 'Nightflight'
    Frank Sinatra - 'Only The Lonely'
    Frank Sinatra - 'No-One Cares'
    Frank Sinatra - 'Sings The Select Cole Porter'
    Frank Sinatra - 'Swings For The Sophisticated'
    Sarah Vaughan - 'Copacabana'
    Dionne Warwick - 'Golden Hits, Volume 2'
    Nancy Wilson - 'Hollywood, My Way'

    Please send all offers of marriage/indecent proposals/high-priced bids/subscription cancellations to the usual address x

  21. I can see a theme coming on. What's in yer box?

    Bit too much of the noodly stuff for me but each to there own and there are a few belters.

    I've got Ella Fitzgerald sings the Cole Porter Song Book vol 1, if you want it, although it may be fucked as my parents did not respect vinyl.

  22. It's a noodly box, yes. It's a Sunday box, really.

    Things move in and things move out though.

    Some LPs left recently just to free up space for better flicking. I kind of think of them as still in there though...

    Sam Cooke - 'The Man And His Music'
    Percy Sledge - 'When A Man Loves A Woman'
    Joe Tex - 'The Love You Save'
    Various Artists - 'Louisiana Blues'

  23. Same happens with my 12" box, things move in and out.

    Top tip, bit of 12" cardboard front and back make sure that no harm comes to the cover of the first and last covers.

    It was all happening on the train tonight, first some twat was sitting on the tracks and then north orf the border some arses had stolen some of the cabling and the train was diverted and it ran out of gin! I will not be travelling up from London on a Friday again

  24. A train that runs out of gin. Nightmare.

  25. no mingus dave? i always had you down as a mingus man. the ones on atlantic - blues & roots etc. and the candid stuff he did w/dolphy.

    i would strongly suggest that you do not start a 'whats in your box theme' as drew mentioned - the filth-mongers who pop in here would have a field day

  26. Mingus on CD anto, but not vinyl. Yet!

  27. Sigh. I only wish I had my old collection back. It kills me. All my Beatles albums but one, auctioned off, because I thought I'd never play vinyl again. I envy you your box full of vinyl.

  28. But you're starting again Dane, and that's a nice thing.

  29. Brilliant! (Your words in the post). Very evocative (like that video that Dane linked too recently).

    As I have banged on about a bit before at Feel It I still have my original singles and 12"/LP boxes from my DJing days way back then. Two of the boxes still house the 12" singles (and some albums) I used to regularly have with me in the club, and the contents have essentially not changed in all the years since. When I open them I can still smell the club! They are both far too full and easy flicking is definitely not possible. But I can't bring myself to pull a few out to make things easier. Those records have lived with each other for overs 30 years now and to split them up... well it just wouldn't be right.


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