Monthly Archives: September 2017

Day Two – #SeptVinylChallenge – Disappointing Follow-Up

During my senior year in high school Sinead O'Connor released her most influential and important album of her career. I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got was WAY more than Nothing Compares 2U. The entire album was the first Gen X soundtrack of the 90s and songs like The Emperor's New Clothes, I Am Stretched on Your Grave, and Black Boys on Mopeds were important and incredible songs. We all felt this was the start of an amazing career. She had other good albums including The Lion and the Cobra. So I was already a huge fan. But then came Am I Not Your Girl?

The 1992 album was essentially a collection of standards and covers and while the album was not terrible it was such a huge miss from her previous three albums. There was the decent Don't Cry for me Argentina and none of the album's songs were horrible. The standards were treated as a direct copy of their original which made that even more disappointing. Here is the deal. I was a huge fan and had so much hope for it. I remember going to the record store, buying the album, rushing back to my dorm, putting the needle down on the album and just being bewildered. Sure she had done a standard on the Red, Hot and Blue record but that did not need a whole album.

So this album was really disappointing and I hated that.

Day One – Bargain Find #SeptVinylChallenge

So in one of the many places I lived Spokane, Washington was one of them. This town of 250,000 located in eastern Washington was a great place to call home. It is also a spot where I purchased a lot of vinyl albums during my teen years. One place where I found a number of albums that were in my collection was at a second had shop called Value Village.  You could find anything there. Like the movie Napoleon Dynamite, of Macklemore’s Thrift Shop the second hand industry was really important. So that is where I found the K-Tel Records Compilation Overlord for I would guess .50 cents.

the album was a wonderful collection of early New Wave and alternative music. While I cannot remember the exact date of purchase I can say the purchase was in 1986 or 1987. It was at a time I was learning which bands like Echo and Bunnymen and The Smiths I was going to love. This album introduced me to an array of other amazing bands. It was the first time that I heard many bands like Depeche Mode, Yazoo, or Simple Minds. It got me hooked on alternative pop music and I listened to the album over and over again.

The album was produced by K-Tel Records who was the Now That’s What I Call Music of their day. Their albums would be advertised on TV and on the radio and you had to send payment to get a record weeks later. This album’s track list is amazing.

Join me in taking the #SeptVinylChallenge

(a project created by Craig Bididman – educator, blogger, music fan)

During the month of September I am going to be taking a trip down music memory lane. Doing some remembering on a collection of music that has long since departed my ownership. Everyone who knows me knows that I have a massive love of music. And that love began a very long time ago with my father. My father, who would have been 64 this year had a massive Vinyl collection. Thousands of albums that he had collected as a child to adulthood. He had them thoughtfully arranged by genre, artist, and feeling so when he was in the mood for a certain artist, kind of sound, or memory he can easily access them. I often felt that was how his brain worked. I spent hundreds of hours looking at, sifting through, and listening to his massive collection. He has this great Pioneer turn table and these huge Sony speakers that made every album sound perfect.

His collection made me want to collect records and I did at places like 4,000 Holes Records in Spokane, Washington, Flea Markets in South Florida, and First Amendment Records in Greenville, North Carolina. While I never amassed his volume of Vinyl I did have somewhere in the neighborhood of 750 albums. Here is where it gets sad. When I enrolled in graduate school in 1995 I did not have room in my car to take my albums with me to grad school at Southern Illinois University. So I left them with my father at his home in Pinetops, NC. I stored them in our barn with all of the rest of my stuff. I think you can figure out the next issue. In 1997 as I was moving between grad school and my new job in Texas a tropical storm hit Eastern North Carolina and it collapsed the roof of the barn. All of my albums were ruined. By time I got to them they were covered in mold, warped, and gone. It was devastating. I never collected Vinyl again.

Fast forward 20 years later and Craig Bididman posts a photo on Instagram with a 30 day Vinyl challenge. I knew right away this was the time to reintroduce myself to my Vinyl collection from 20 years ago and to look into the confines of my memories to recollect those albums all over again. So, why you will not see any photos of me holding a vinyl album know that each album I will post and write about I did own at some time and I think I might try to find again. Music has been the core of my personal survival and it always will be. For the next 30 days, I get to revisit so many of those important albums. Thanks Craig and I hope you too will enjoy this walk down amnesia lane.

Here is a screenshot of Craig’s Instagram Post for those who want to join in.

Screen Shot 2017-09-01 at 11.27.14 AM