Luke Brindley:
The TVD First Date

“My dad was a drummer in a decent garage rock band in Pittsburgh in the ’60s. When I was 14 or so, we visited my grandmother in Pittsburgh and I returned to New Jersey with a stack of my dad’s old 45s from her attic.”

“We had a record player at home and I remember spending days just going through the stack. There was a lot of great, old rock stuff—bands like The Rascals, The Standells, The Animals, The Human Beinz, The Who, The Kinks, etc. Something about these raw rock songs played on scratchy old 45s felt right and authentic. They also felt doable—these were songs played by really young guys who had pretty basic skills on their instruments—they sounded like me and my friends.

At the time, I was just starting to take guitar and songwriting seriously and these songs seemed a lot more within reach than most of what I read in bewildering interviews with Steve Vai or Joe Satriani in Guitar Player magazine or the glossy, over-produced songs on pop radio.

I was starting bands with my friends. We were getting into punk and DIY music on 7” from Dischord bands like Minor Threat, Fugazi, and Shudder To Think, and bands from California like Operation Ivy and The Minutemen.

After studying guitar in college, I got a job working at Crazy Rhythms in Montclair, NJ—one of northern New Jersey’s best record stores. They were selling a lot of CDs, but specialized in rare and hard to find vinyl. Most of the guys I worked with were at least twice my age and seemed to live for record collecting and showing off their encyclopedic knowledge of recorded pop music. It was a fascinating scene—straight out of High Fidelity or something. On my last day at the store, my boss gave me a copy of Charles Mingus’ Tijuana Moods on vinyl—something not available on CD at the time and a record I’d been asking him about for a while.

One of the artists I was really getting into at that time was a Canadian singer/ songwriter/ guitarist named Bruce Cockburn. Most of his work was only available in Canada so I had to scour the listings in Goldmine magazine and send away to Canadian stores to buy the records. I remember looking forever to find rare albums like Circles In The Stream and more. The thrill of finding a listing and then the anticipation of waiting for the record’s arrival was something I haven’t known in a while—especially since instant gratification via Spotify, YouTube, etc.

I really miss record stores! I used to avoid the giant, corporate stores like Tower for the smaller, independent shops, etc but now I’d love to have even Tower back! There was nothing like spending a weekend afternoon walking around Greenwich Village record shopping, looking for some rare imports at Bleecker Bob’s or the stores on St. Marks Place. Or stopping into Other Music or Kim’s on my lunch break on release day to see what was new.

It’s easier these days to try new music—and that’s probably a good thing in the long run—but there was something to the commitment of having to spend a few bucks on a record or CD that was recommended by a friend or just looked cool—that made it mean more and made you listen closer because you had something invested.”
Luke Brindley

After a highly successful Pledge Music campaign, Luke Brindley is releasing a new album, Crack Of Light, with a special show at Jammin Java in Vienna, VA this Friday June 5. Tickets are here.

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  • SUPPORTING YOUR LOCAL INDIE SHOPS SINCE 2007


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