I am not one to discourage anyone from buying vinyl, but every once in a while, when the funds are low and you get that itch to dig for records around the city, it's time to reevaluate priorities. Will it be records or paying the rent? Will it be saving money to travel or building the ultimate record collection? At some point in any sane collector’s mind, a voice should come into your head that says, “Slow down!” Really, unless you are someone like DJ Shadow, who makes a living by playing and sampling his entire record collection, every once in a while, you've got to slow your roll.
Clothing shopaholics are told to dig through their own closets rather than to shop for more clothes. Most of the time, they will have clothes that still have the price tag on them and have never been worn. It’s called “shopping your closet.” It saves you money and gives you the same kick that you’d get from shopping at the mall. On top of that, you can make an inventory of what you have (so you don’t buy it again) or see what you want to keep and what you want to get rid of. Clothing that is no longer needed can be donated or sold to a vintage clothing store, where you can take that money and save it, or gasp…buy more clothes!
The same goes for records. We collectors have a bunch of records that haven’t been played. Many of us have records in our collection that are still sealed. We have bought doubles by accident. Take that time you would use for digging and go through what you already have. Chances are you will be reintroduced to music that you have forgotten about.
The ever-important listening session is key. I find it funny that the people that are most guilty of not listening to records they bought are club DJs. It’s somewhat understandable. If you are a club DJ, you are buying music to play out rather than to enjoy. It’s your living. Most of your free time, you are practicing rather than listening and the most a record gets is a few drops of the needle before finding the “hit.” You may not be able to play out a rare record that you always wanted because it doesn’t match what you play now…so it sits.
Last weekend, I put myself to the test. I went through my collection and was pleasantly surprised by the records I did have rather than fiending over the ones I didn’t have. I left out my stand bys, all my favorites that I do play out on a regular basis, in the gig bag and went digging. Some, I can’t wait to bust out again. Others, I probably will sell. These are some that I had forgot I had and perked my interest.
Googoosh (Gougoush)-Best Of
As much as I love this Persian icon and was excited to find this album on the original Ahang Rooz label, there hasn’t been much of a chance to play this out in my Latin Music based sets. However, there is an incredible Mamboesque track, "Kucheye Miadd," which will probably drop in the next set or two.
I got this because it had some tracks from Los Relampagos from Spain. This bootleg of instrumentals from around the world came out in the nineties, way before the whole recent psychedelic world music boom. This sound is like something Sublime Frequencies would put out: Trashy surf rock bands from Japan, Spain, France, Holland and a rare track from the Ventures, listed as The Mystery Band.
Again, I got this album months ago because it was an original pressing but perhaps a little too mellow to play out. It’s the album that finds Gilberto in London as a Brazilian exile along with Caetano Veloso. Like Caetano’s 3rd Self-titled album (also released in 1971), it is mostly sung in English. Some don’t like the English records but to me there is a beauty in his voice that cannot be denied in any language. It’s the perfect melancholy record for any gray day when you are feeling homesick.
Ray Rodriguez And Orquestra Duro-Survival
Ahhh…the days when you could still find classic Salsa albums at the thrift store. I think I bought this for a buck at an Out Of The Closet in Atwater. This is, hands down, a classic. I was wondering why I haven’t busted this out, like ever? One reason is that it has a giant scratch on side two and I put it in a section in my collection devoted to scratched or damage records that one day I will go through to see if I can salvage or not. On second look, side one doesn’t have a mark and side two, except for the last song, "Amarate El Juanete," is clean as well. This is a floor banger for sure and I will bust this out at one of my next gigs.
So there you have it. Four albums that I forgot I had and two that I will possibly use at gigs. There were other records that I listened to that I wasn’t that into that I will sell to trim the excuse fat off the collection. Remember, Amoeba pays top dollar for your trades, so if you can’t kick your music habit, at least you can recycle the goods.