Since the 80s my collection of mostly New Wave albums on vinyl has
dwindled to a very small collection. The many moves that I have made
since 1985 certainly did have their influence in the battle of attrition
as with each move made I purged the collection a little more due to
weight considerations. And if you've ever packed boxes of vinyl records
you know what I am talking about.
So I still have this small collection of vinyls laying around. But for
years now it has not been any big deal anyway. The last stereo
I owned that would play vinyl I got rid of in 1990. After that I turned
to the CD format. And to be honest (and I usually am) I am sure that
most of my old vinyl sounds like crap these days anyway. Too much time,
too much wear and tear. There are a few unusual albums in what's left
of the collection that are not replaceable. But most of them are now
available on CD, and they sound much better than the old vinyl too and
you don't have to worry about spizzles and pops and warping.
When I first started listening to music as a youngster vinyl of course
was the only medium out there. During the 70s 8-Track came along, but
I never did go that route. Then cassette tapes came out, and in the early
80s I did buy some of those as I originally started out with a big ghetto
blaster that only played cassettes. When I got my new Kenwood stereo
system in 1982 — the first really good stereo I had ever owned — it
had a dual cassette deck; but I went back to vinyl at that point. And
then CDs came out. And I've already mentioned that part of it.
So, what's in the future? Well probably nothing that I really have to
worry about because I'm not going to be around that long. They say it
might go to the mini-CD. But I doubt that. I could put the equivalent
of hundreds of songs on my USB thumbnail drive and about a thousand
on the memory card on my camera. So my guess is that the albums of the
future will either go the way of a removable thumb drive or a postage
stamp memory card type of thing. And in fact it might not even go
either of those routes. Perhaps tomorrow's youngsters will do nothing
but download music off the internet onto whatever media they choose.
So at this point there's very little to do with my old vinyl. Except to
throw some of the albums onto the bed rather haphazardly and take a
picture of them.
The important thing, of course, is that I have my memories of all that,
of all the years spent with all that music. And those memories aren't
on vinyl or cassette or CD.