In rotation: 5/20/22

Cleveland, OH | One Year Later: How This Cleveland Record Store Continues To Thrive: In 2021, GOBankingRates featured “Small Business Spotlight” nominee A Separate Reality Records, a record store in Cleveland started by music industry vet and cancer survivor Augustus Payne. At the time, Payne shared how he adapted his business during the pandemic to keep it going through difficult times. Now, one year later, we’re checking back in with Payne to talk about what he’s learned over the past two years and what his hopes are for the future of his business. “…It’s an amazing feeling when people love the records you’re selling. This is not only a business for me but a true labor of love.”

Mumbai, IN | For the record: vinyl is back: Analog music in India is growing steadily, with both Millennials and General Z collecting records, releasing albums with labels, and even a vinyl bar is now in the mix. Couldn’t be worse than this. Fifteen days after Record Store Day (April 23), Apple announced that it was discontinuing production of the iPod. The iconic gadget that changed the way we listen to, store and share our favorite songs has gone silent. If someone had a scorecard on May 10, it would have written Analog: 1, Digital: 0. While it is true that most of us stream songs on our phones and computers, the standard stream of music enthusiasts around the world converts music to algorithm-based music for the close and definite pleasure of vinyl. The form that rose in the 70s, declined in the 90s, almost disappeared with the arrival of the new millennium. It must have been ruined, à iPod, but it’s interesting

Washington, DC | From Pat Boone to the Sex Pistols: Inside the secret White House record collection: It all started on a Carter family vacation, around 2008-09. John Chuldenko’s uncle, Jeff Carter — the son of former President Jimmy Carter — was talking about a night at the White House during his dad’s administration in the late 1970s. Uncle Jeff wasn’t sure if it was a state dinner, but it “was something fancy,” Chuldenko remembers him saying. Later in the evening, presumably after the fancy dinner, Uncle Jeff snuck upstairs to the residence with a couple friends and they started playing records and “drinking wine and stuff.” They were playing The Rolling Stones, specifically the song “Star Star” off their 1973 album Goats Head Soup. The song is not rated PG, and it drew the attention of Uncle Jeff’s mom, Rosalynn Carter, and then-second lady Joan Mondale. They apparently did not stay long.

St. John’s, CA | Vinyl hunting: St. John’s woman trying to recover her father’s record collection stolen and sold while he was hospitalized. GoFundMe set up to help with potential recovery costs as the N.L. vinyl community rallies to support one of its own. Any serious collector, whether it be of books, records, sports cards or any of a thousand other things, will tell you their collection is priceless to them, no matter what the actual book value. That’s why April Miller was so upset when she discovered someone went into her father Gary’s home in St. John’s, stole his collection of thousands of vinyl records while he is hospitalized in the ICU with a severe lung condition and sold them. “Mine and my family’s hearts are so broken over this, as music is my dad’s whole entire life,” Miller wrote in a social media post. “And where I get my love for music as well. I’m gutted this person could do this to my dad.”

Manchester, UK | The vinyl revival: Why the table has turned on the format in Greater Manchester: The vinyl revival is well underway. More than five million records were sold in the UK last year – a 30-year high, according to the British Phonographic Industry (BPI). Vinyl sales have grown in each of the past 14 years, with the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA) charting a 23.2% increase since 2021, with projections sales will rise even further in 2022. And the increase in interest has sent soundwaves into Greater Manchester’s 29 record shops, who are reaping the benefits in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic. Wax and Beans – a record and coffee shop which opened in Bury in 2019 – is among those which has seen a rise in trading even in its short history.

Motor-Shaped Record Players: The Conceptual ‘Rotor’ Vinyl Record Player is Industrial. The conceptual ‘Rotor’ vinyl record player has been designed by William Fairington as an industrial audio solution for today’s consumer to enjoy their favorite LPs in a decidedly modern way. The record player features a round design that calls to mind the aesthetic of an electric vehicle motor, which is further reinforced with a series of bare metal finishes and linear repetition. A vinyl record can be comfortably positioned in the top-middle for play and finishes off the balanced aesthetic of the stark player. The conceptual ‘Rotor’ vinyl record player helps to elevate audio equipment aesthetics and perceptions given the existing nature of their design. This relates to the increased popularity of vinyl records as of late, but also how they’re often played on equipment from yesteryear.

Denver, CO | Sailor Records Pushes Onward for the Love of Music: Tucked in the basement of Sailor Records — an independent record label catering to Mile High musicians — owner Oscar Ross’ home is a studio categorized by professionality and character. Stepping into the studio space by way of the sticker-tattered door, you’re transported to a world where music is the only thing that matters, and the only issue to occupy your thoughts. Ross, having played music from a young age, described the feeling that inspired his journey with Sailor Records. “I was addicted,” Ross said. Describing his experience of playing in his first major band, Lords of Fuzz, Ross went on to describe how the experience of letting loose with other musicians, by means of writing songs and playing live, was joyously cathartic. “Lords of Fuzz was literally a bunch of guys hanging out, getting high, playing really bad music and it was so much fun,” he said.

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