Computer Magic,
The TVD First Date

“Where to start with vinyl? I think I should start with my love of music.”

“I’ve always loved music since I can remember. Growing up, I can recall filling my brick of an iPod up with complete discographies of bands I love, immersing myself completely, going so far as to sneak one headphone in my ear during class (what a rebel). I remember going into Borders (they’ve gone out of business and are now Barnes & Noble) and picking up imported British magazines like NME and Mojo.

I got into many British indie bands in high school this way, some bands no one in my school had ever heard of like The Libertines, The Cribs, The Rakes, Kaiser Chiefs (at the time they were just starting out), The Long Blondes, Clor, Tom Vek, Black Wire, Art Brut, etc. Not only was I infatuated with this music, but I also enjoyed having a specific taste that was different from my peers, something I could have for myself, I guess. (I was pretty taken aback when I graduated and moved to New York City—there were more people there who shared my taste in music).

I can’t remember which Christmas it was, but it must have been around the time I was getting into all these British indie bands. I wandered onto this website called eil.com where I discovered a rich profusion of vinyl from bands that I was into! To my dad’s surprise, my Christmas list that year consisted of only vinyl with a number to call eil, since he didn’t know how to use the internet. I had also asked my mom for a record player—divorced parents means two Christmases and coinciding presents. I would eventually acquire a mixer and save up enough money for another record player so I could teach myself how to DJ in my room.

My parents were not vinyl collectors, so I’m unsure where my need for analog sound stems from. Yes, records are tangible and sound fantastic, they usually contain the artwork and lyrics, they are the true representation of the artist—although I think the reason I wanted to own vinyl records when I was a kid was because I wanted to prove how much of a fan I was, at least to myself I suppose. If The Cribs came out with a 7” single and pressed it on yellow vinyl and on blue vinyl, I had to have them both (which I do, it’s called “Mirror Kissers”) even though it was the same single. If it was a limited edition tour vinyl, I had to have it even if I didn’t attend the tour, etc.

My first records were of the bands I loved as a kid. Now, I collect everything. My collection has grown since high school, as has my taste in music. I really love records that have something special inside. I own George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass which came with an amazing portrait of George that I have up in my living room now. I recently bought Blur’s The Magic Whip and Radiohead’s A Moon Shaped Pool—both of which house beautiful artwork.

These past few years I’ve grown fond of going into record shops and buying a record I’ve never heard of. I’ve acquired many fascinating records just buy trusting the record store’s buyer. A few of my favorites that I’ve collected this way are Various Artists Sitar Beat! Indian Style Heavy Funk, William Onyeabor Who is William Onyeabor?, Gal Costa Gal Costa, The Sunday Manoa Guava Jam.

My collection definitely varies, from soundtracks—2001: A Space Odyssey, Broadcast – “Barbarian Sound Studio” to classics—The Kinks Arthur, Or The Rise and Fall of The British Empire, Steely Dan Aja, Fleetwood Mac Rumours, Funkadelic Funkadelic, Paul & Linda McCartney Ram, David Bowie Changes. Then there’s indie-esque classics—Yeah Yeah Yeahs Master, Belle & Sebastian If You’re Feeling Sinister, Radiohead OK Computer, Brian Jonestown Massacre Their Satanic Majesties Second Request.

Then there’s new wave—Talking Heads True Stories, Joy Division Unknown Pleasures, Gary Numan Replicas. Of course, 1960s girl group stuff—Mary Wells Sings My Guy, Brenda & The Tabulations Dry Your Eyes. My most recently acquired records are The Ocean Blue (S/T), The Church Starfish, Shuggie Otis Introducing Shuggie Otis, and New Order Power, Corruption, and Lies.

I could go on but I think I’ve written too much already. I’m sitting here staring at my collection and it’s hard not to list more.

It’s so easy to buy records these days. Usually now if I’m really into something I’ll find the vinyl off Discogs or eBay, although I still and always will love going into record stores and finding something new. In fact, I think my dream job is owning my own record shop and just sitting there buying records and listening to them all day. As a fan of music in general I think one’s record collection is a testament to their fandom, and I don’t think I will ever stop buying records.”
Danielle Johnson

Computer Magic’s “Obscure but Visible” EP is in stores now on limited edition 10″ vinyl with poster.

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