Gal Musette,
The TVD First Date

“I was fifteen when I received my first turntable as a gift from my bandmate. At the time I didn’t own a single record, but it looked cool, so I put it in my room and made a mental note to start my collection.”

“Gradually I started building it starting with a few records I found at a local music shop called Sound Spectrum. My grandpa had been educating me with the music of Doris Day, Bing Crosby, Irving Berlin, and Tony Bennett, so when he discovered I had been given a record player he eagerly let me “borrow” some of his favorite records of theirs, which I began listening to on repeat. Now it feels strange to listen to those artists in any other setting!

In recent years I’ve found great records all over the place. I’ve found many at the Amoeba Records locations in LA/SF where they have such a broad assortment of well-known material it can be a bit overwhelming. Sometimes I prefer finding gems at thrift stores/antique shops where you really have to hunt for the good ones (it makes it sound better.)

Listening to vinyl is an entirely different experience than listening via a streaming service, or even a CD. The warmth and quality of the sound is obviously elevated, but it’s also the experience. Sort of like opening up a piano and seeing the mallets hitting the keys as you play them—it’s really special to see the mechanics so clearly when you set the needle on the grooves of a record.

I realized as I was writing this that most of my favorite records are not by my favorite artists. A few examples of records I have listened to hundreds of times are: Autumn (Piano Solos) by George Winston, Early Takes (Volume 1) by George Harrison, When Irish Eyes are Smiling by Bing Crosby, The Lady Sings by Billie Holiday, Le Fil by Camille—but if I got in my car and plugged my phone into the speaker system I wouldn’t choose put these albums on. There is a nostalgia when I hear these records that I feel I can only truly experience when played on vinyl.

To pause for 40ish minutes and listen to a complete record takes a considerable amount of focus when you’ve got apps out there like TikTok and YouTube to compete with that provide instant gratification. It’s easier to come home and entertain myself by turning on a familiar TV show or a shuffled Spotify playlist of top hits by various artists than to commit my full attention to listening to a record front to back.

Sometimes I get too preoccupied with life and forget the beauty of the full-length experience, but I am reminded time and again (when I put the time aside to be present) what a special art form making albums/vinyl is. Records are fragile, bulky, and they are definitely not the most efficient way to listen to music with modern technology—but I don’t think they’ll ever stop being made because they are (in my opinion) the most magical way to experience recorded music.”
Grace Freeman

“Ghost,” the new single from Gal Musette, the nom de plume of Grace Freeman, is taken from of her forthcoming full-length release Backwards Lullaby.

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PHOTO: ANNA AZAROV

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