The resurgence of vinyl sales and popularity has thrown part of today’s music industry back into the 1950s. When dropping a new album, more and more modern musicians are now releasing vinyl along with the typical CDs and digital copies. As the consumer market for records grow, independent record shops such as Second Spin continue to flourish as well.
“Some come into this shop looking for Pink Floyd, and others come in for One Direction,” Second Spin worker Miranda said. “Vinyl is not just for ‘oldie’ music, but for all genres of music.”
The records in Second Spin ranged from around $10 to $70, the more vintage and popular the album, the higher the price. Albums such as Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On and The Black Key’s Thickfreakness were among the more expensive vinyl being sold.
“I’ve always liked collecting things,” a customer named Matt said as he flicked through the ‘P’ section of the records. “So having a physical stack of my music that I can see and touch is so much more satisfying than having a list of songs on my phone.” After a quiet laugh, he said, “My ex was always impressed that I owned a record player, so I guess it’s also a good way to impress the girls.”
Sound quality is another main reason record players are now reclaiming their spot in the average person’s living room. Many vinyl supporters advocate the uncompressed and authentic sound created only through a needle on a spinning record.
The tall stack of CDs previously adorning teenagers’ bedrooms are now being replaced with piles of records. There is something about having tangible copies of your favorite music that appeal to this otherwise extremely digital society.
Because basically everything is accessible through the Internet nowadays, people have become jaded with the lack of effort required to get things such as music. Companies such as Spotify and Pandora provide a large variety of music, and because of this the excitement and novelty of acquiring new tunes has worn off.
“It’s almost more personal in a way,” vinyl enthusiast Anna said. “After driving to the record shop, finding the record you want, and then buying it, the anticipation to listen to it once you’re home is something you don’t get with purchasing music on iTunes. It makes music more special.”
The comeback of record players is extremely nostalgic for the generation that grew up listening to vinyl. Like coming home and smelling your mom’s cooking after a long time away, the scratch of a needle on a record is comforting and familiar for many people like Miranda.
“It’s funny how people are treating records as if it’s a new thing,” Miranda said. “People come in and hype them up as if they’re a new thing, but they’ve been around for so long.”
Whether it’s because of the uncompressed sound quality, the collectability, or the supposed fact that it impresses the entirety of the female gender, there is no doubt that owning vinyl is a trend that is back in fashion.