I remember the first record I ever bought. It was the 45 single of “The Tide Is High” by Blondie. I remember the day I bought it at the Spokane Valley Mall when I was out with my friends for the day, hanging out. I was in 6th grade. I remember standing in the record store and staring at the cover and thinking that Blondie was the coolest woman on the planet. I played the record to death. And others, too. It was the beginning of a beautiful relationship with music and records.
I sold my record collection in my grandmother’s estate sale. I’d become a born-again Christian and didn’t think having them was wholesome. So I sold them for a song. Yes, including my beloved “The Tide Is High” 45. I have regretted doing this many millions of times. It hurts even now, just thinking about it.
Eventually, like everyone else, I moved on to cassette tapes, then CDs, then mp3.
A few weeks ago I went on a search in Portland for a record album released in vinyl for my Dutch friend. It was a special USA release and I offered to have a look. Unfortunately It was a special Black Friday release of the Big Lebowski Soundtrack and, being Portland, it sold out very quickly by the time I hit the stores. However, my prowling around in the fabulous indie record stores of Portland re-ignited my love for record albums. The whole tactile feel of thumbing through the albums filed by genre in bins. Picking up the 12×12 album cover and holding it in my hands and looking at the cover art. I might have bought a family member’s Christmas present in one of those stores…
I have decided to jump back into this world of vinyl records. I have a turntable back home in Spokane but I can’t even wait for my mom to drive it here. I am going to use my Christmas money to buy a record player (I swear to god I probably said these exact words when I was 11). And my first vinyl purchase will be Pixies Doolittle 25. Actually, the impetus for this desire to listen to music on a record player again, the thing that put me over the edge, was seeing that Doolittle was being reissued on vinyl. Doolittle is my favorite album of all time, period. I can’t think of a better re-introduction.