Saturday, April 18, 2009

For the record ...

Do you remember record albums? Way before digital music, before MP3 players, even before CDs, cassettes and 8-track tapes, there were records, also called albums or LPs. Like many people did in the early 90s, we got rid of our old records. We sold them at a yard sale for practically nothing. I should have taken them to a record store, but I was too lazy. The only ones I kept was my collection by The Who. I kept all the related ones by Roger Daltrey, Pete Townshend, John Entwistle, and Keith Moon too. I couldn't part with my Who collection, so I still have it. I don't even have a record player to, so they just sit here in this box, which is kind of sad.

Today is Record Store Day, which is a day to celebrate independent record stores. When I was younger, my favorite place to go was a record store. We had some pretty good independent ones where I lived. I always went right to The Who section with big hopes of finding something rare that I didn't have. I even remember going down to Los Angeles a few times for record conventions where I'd find bootlegs and imports. This was pre-Internet, mind you, so finding an import was like discovering gold back then. Now days you can find almost anything with the click of a mouse and have it delivered to your door. Back then you had to travel and then dig through boxes and boxes of records. It was a fun way to spend a Saturday. We had lots of records in my house when I was growing up. My mom played Elvis all the time. My sister loved music and was a huge fan of The Beatles. I remember she cut out an advertisement from the LA Times and hung it on the wall of our room. It was an ad for Woodstock. Yeah, the real Woodstock! My brother liked hard rock and he was usually found in the driveway working on the car while listening to Deep Purple. Ironically, the very first record album I bought of my own was The Best of Earth, Wind & Fire, Volume 1. Yeah, pretty weird if you think about all the other music I grew up listening to. I have absolutely NO idea what made me buy that album because I wasn't a huge fan. It's just odd how I remember it so well.

How about you -- do you remember the first record you bought?


  1. We are telling on ourselves. I have a few left (not that I ever had a large collection of them) but the first albums I remember having - oy this is bad - is Donnie and Marie Osmond - I was a fan, what can I say - lmao. I've had Partridge Family and some other and a few 45s floating around. The first "prize" I ever won off anything was an oldies but goodies album of some sort - I was 14 and living with grandmother and was listening to the radio and it was a call-in type thing.

    I ran to my grandmother's bedroom and started calling the station (this was before school so it was still early in the morning - like 6:30 or so -and my poor grandmother was freaking out). But I actually got through and was the right caller and won the album - I still have it somewhere. I don't know where but it's around somewhere along with Donnie and Marie and the Partridges -

    May even still have a record player somewhere but I don't know where. Oh well - thanks for bringing back memories - E :)

  2. The music store is still one of my fave places to browse.
    When I was little, I would put on my Mom's Beatles records and play them over and over and over.
    My own first records included the Grease soundtrack, Peter Criss, Billy Joel, and REO Speedwagon.

  3. I liked record stores too, "flipping" through the albums and the smell of the store. My mom still has a huge collection of records and listens to the a lot. Montevoni, Eddie Arnold, 1000 Strings. I grew up with those and still love them today.

    Once I was in Jr. High and High School it was the John Denver everything. I think I have them all (or mom does). Thanks for the memories Rena!


  4. I remember records from when I was a kid. Then I remember cassettes and videos. THEN CDs hit the shelves... wow! And now it's iPods and digital stuff. I've witnessed a lot! Makes me wonder what's to come. :D

    Records still have GREAT sound...

  5. I don't remember the first record I bought, but it was probably John Denver. I still have them all. We still have a record player too. I should try it and see if it still works!

  6. My first record was a Care Bear one that wasn't black vinyl, but red. I remember thinking how neat that was at the ripe age of 4. There were also some 45s, but I can't recall what they were. Probably more kiddie ones.

    My first real record, though, was Michael Jackson's Thriller. I remember feeling so cool, like I was in on this great secret with the rest of the world. My parents still have it at their house.

    I can't really remember owning any other records after that, though, because the era of the cassette tape was on the rise.


  7. I used to love to hang out at the record store too, Rena! That was always my favorite place in the mall.
    Cool that you kept your Who collection -- I have no idea where all my Stones albums are. Oh, and I think my first album was Tattoo You :)


  8. Oh're digging into the past. I went to the record store almost every day after school trying to figure out which one I wanted to get next with my saved up baby-sitting money.

    I still have all my albums! Over 500 of them. Everything from Allman Brothers to Frank Zappa. There was always music in my home. My father had a pretty extensive collection of jazz, blues, bigband and classical. Consiquently the very first album I ever bought was Frank Sinatra's "Strangers in the Night," (scooby dooby doo...)1967.

    That summer of '67 was huge and I finally got into rock. The Doors with Light My Fire, Sgt. Peppers, Magical Mystery Tour, Sitting on the Dock of the Bay by Otis Redding...I got 'em all.

    (and I've got bunch of Who too.)

  9. The first record I bought was Kiss “Love Gun”
    I still have a few, the ones that really mattered to me the sound track to “The Graduate” by Simon & Garfunkel & Janis Joplin Big Brother & the Holding company “Cheap Thrills” Art work by Robert Crumb (Mr. Crumb signed it for me at a lecture he was speaking at)
    I miss records I miss record stores more 8 tracks were ok they could take a lot of abuse and still play

  10. lol Rena - I was at my mom's the other day and we were playing her 45's! Watching my kids dance to 'the bop' and 'the twist' just like I did was awesome.

    First album I ever bought was Abba - Super Trooper and a Blondie album (no idea of the name). Now that was a long time ago! lol

  11. Oh Rena...I have remembered more about my youth since finding your blog then I have in all the years in between...grin...

    I'm almost ashamed to admit this...I do remember the first album I bought with my own was:

    The Donny Osmond AlbumI still have the album...needless to say Hubs has had a lot of fun kidding me about that...grin...