Jasmine Rodgers,
The TVD First Date

“I’ve been looking at all the First Dates and what I love is how many of these musicians have been drawn to music through their parents’ record collections. It’s not just a collection of records, it’s a record of their lives collected together. When I was a kid, cassette tapes were norm and CDs were coming up too. We were once given one of those that were the size of an LP—I don’t think my dad knew what to do with it so it got put on the wall as art/weird mirror.”

“The ceremony attached to the playing of vinyl was never lost on me, there was such a buzz watching the needle pick up and play. At home the collection was very varied as my dad is a real searcher for good music. It started for me with Elvis though, Little Richard, The Beatles, and the Disney soundtrack (I kid you not, “We are Siamese” and Luis Prima singing Jungle Book? Incredible). We also had a 1950s jukebox which had been slightly updated with the odd single from the 1970s, so I know all kinds of wonderful tunes that your gran probably rocked out to (such as “The Stripper”—David Rose & His Orchestra—my grandma loved that) as well as “Tiger Feet” by Mud.

But it was the whole sensory experience, the artwork, the opening up of the cover and the feel of the cardboard, sometimes they had writing on them and you had a sense of them being held onto, through all the different times in my parents’ lives, so in a way they made me feel closer to my parents too. It was a real initiation being taught how to hold vinyl, take it out of the sleeve, all that.

I used to put on a record, lie down, and just drift away. The downside was that in my room I wouldn’t be able to reach to turn the record over, only enough to put the needle to the start, so there are whole swathes of music that I’ve not heard—but upside is I know what I know really well.

Kate Bush’s The Whole Story (I know one side intimately). Hearing the Bulgarian singers lifting into chorus and swirling around her voice is just incredible. Roberta Flack’s Tryin’ Times—the cover is so evocative and you can hear every nuance in her voice. Joan Armatrading (self titled)—I would listen to “Love and Affection” repeatedly—I love the guitar sound. And Led Zeppelin (all of them) over and over again, every part I love. Through my dad’s collection I met Nick Drake, Bob Dylan, Procul Harum, Fairport Convention, and many others.

Everybody probably says it, but it’s the crackle that does it for me and the warm clear sound. We’ve just reinstated a record player in my home and the Art of Segovia is what’s on at the moment. It just crosses decades and it feels really intimate. I guess it’s the physicality of it/ or the physics of analogue, and when listening to acoustic music I guess everything is accentuated.

For me, vinyl demands to be heard. It’s never background music. I can’t do anything else but just listen. I’m looking at releasing my album Blood Red Sun on vinyl—I want that whole array of sound in there and it gives me a buzz to imagine how warm it will sound. In a way then it will feel complete.”
Jasmine Rodgers

Jasmine Rodgers’ debut release Blood Red Sun is in stores now.

Jasmine Rodgers Official | Facebook | Twitter
PHOTO: RICHARD MOUNTAIN

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