Annie Dressner,
The TVD First Date

“I moved to England in 2011 and brought only one vinyl with me; Phoebe Snow’s Against The Grain. My mother had bought it for me a few years prior when I was still living in NYC, and I cherished it. One night, I was at a local bar in Astoria, LIC BAR, where I would perform a lot. The bar had and still has wonderful curated nights, booked by Gustavo Rodriguez. While enjoying a drink, who walked in? Phoebe Snow! I had to tell her that the only vinyl I owned at the time was hers. She was very nice, and it made the vinyl feel even more special to me.”

“My first memory of vinyl was my parents copy of John Denver’s Windsong as it leaned on the corner of our wooden side table in my living room in downtown NYC. My parents were always playing records, ranging from folk to classical, to rock to musical theatre. I actually once wrote a song called “Paper Moon” where I mention a vinyl that I “played so much that I broke it.” I’m not exactly sure what the record was called, but it definitely had the song “Pop Goes the Weasel” on it. (It only occurred to me lately that perhaps I didn’t break it, but maybe my parents couldn’t stand it anymore so that’s what they told me… hmmmm.) I used to run circles around living room and it was very fun!

My parents record player was one that flipped the record from side A to side B without our having to flip it. I was quite young, but I’m almost certain this is true, because I have a memory of watching it in awe and thinking it was cool. I also knew that I was not allowed to touch it, which I did not—but I wanted to. My brother, did however, teach me how to get an electric shock from the volume knobs of our hifi and also make our hair get staticky.

Another early memory I have of vinyl—if you can even call it that—was my Fisher Price record player. I don’t remember what songs it had, but I believe the ‘vinyl’ were primary colors. This was a great toy!

I grew up in the same building as my grandparents, both very musical. I am not sure what it’s called, but in my grandparent’s den, there is a large, beautiful wooden cabinet with speakers and a record player with record storage inside. I think my grandmother let me touch it once—and it felt like I was now seen as an adult. The soundtrack to Borsalino was frequently played—I’m sure lots of other records were, too, but for some reason that is the only one that comes to mind. It was definitely an occasion when we would listen to a record—it was not background.

There’s something romantic about vinyl, too. It feels timeless and makes you actually need to concentrate on what you are doing and listening to. You need to be careful with it. So much right now is easy and careless and quick—it’s nice to have to slow down to actually take the time to appreciate the music for what it is—to be able to see a bit more how much work went into creating what is now normally just an mp3. It feels special.

Vinyl is beautiful. It feels significant. It’s tangible and lasting. This is one of the reasons why I decided to press my latest album Coffee At The Corner Bar in vinyl. Perhaps one day someone will be searching through the old beaten up records and come across mine in the ‘Folk’ or ‘Indie Folk’ pile in a thrift store. Maybe, just maybe that will be special to them—a discovery like many I have found in that situation, and maybe, just maybe they will cherish it.”
Annie Dressner

Coffee At The Corner Bar, the new full-length release from Annie Dressner is in stores now—on vinyl.

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PHOTO: ELLY LUCAS

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