Father and Daughter Bond
Over Vinyl Records on Record Store Day
Record Store Day comes once a year, and it almost feels like a bonus Christmas for music enthusiasts like myself. But this year was much more special than the rest.
Well, it’s simple: my dear 14-year-old daughter Hannah, who has a genuine love for music as her father does, came with me and shared the experience. We even agree on most things but the country music genre. (I love country. She does not — yet.)
So she and I took a wa
lk on a beautiful warm Saturday to historic downtown Columbia, Tennessee to our local, beloved Variety Record shop. When you walk in, you step back in time. It’s a place where you can sit and listen to music in the shop and truly enjoy the wonders of a vinyl record. The clicks, pops, and white noise are irreplaceable. In our Digital Instant Gratification Age, it’s refreshing to slow down a bit and listen to some records.
Hannah was surprised to learn that not only do old records exist, but her current favorite artists also contribute to the respected format, cutting vinyl records not only for the occasion of Record Store Day but for general release of their albums.
As I walked in, I saw all ages, from young children to the elderly, flipping through records — something you cannot do with a digital download. There’s something enchanting about records. It reminds me that we should not look down on the generations that went before us. They had some great things going for them. Job said it best: “Those that are older should speak, for wisdom comes with age” (Job 32:7).
I had a chance to speak with some of the people there about their Record Store Day experience, beginning with the Variety Shop owner Tim Scribner (pictured left with his son) as well as Kevin Sport (pictured right), the host of The Right Place with Kevin Sport http://therightplacewithkevinsport.com/ on RFDTV — a show that’s recorded live for television locally at Puckett’s Grocery and Restaurant here in Columbia.
Why do you think its important to preserve vinyl and have a day like record store day?
Tim Scribner: I think it’s the deliberate effort that it takes to play the vinyl record and to appreciate the fullness of the sound that comes out of vinyl vs. digital downloads. And I can phrase it pretty simple; the way I look at it is if you want to sit down and truly hear music then you will play a record. You are taking the time to listen. You are not just rushing through your day and hearing things. You are actually enjoying the music and that is what vinyl does for you.
Kevin Sport: I think it is for real music lovers still. I don’t think that it has anything to do with whether you are 20 or 50 or whatever. I don’t buy into any of that. I think that it is not only a thing of the past, but it is a present thing, and it will be here for a while. It’s very similar to when a movie comes out: we go to the movie and we soak it all in, and with an album that is what it is about too — from the first song to the last song, and there is a lot of thought that goes into producing an album.
Scribner: We can attest to that because of the age thing. We have record collectors that are 8, 9, 10 years old, and then all the way up to 70 and 80. We have guys that come in here three times a week to see what’s new, and they’re still building their vinyl collection and even getting duplicates, because this one is in better shape than the one they have.
[I then spoke with Whitney Duncan who is a local middle school art teacher, a Variety Records employee, and the artist of the limited print Record Store Day lithograph that is pictured.]
Why do you as an artist, a music lover, and a record store employee think Record Store Day is so important?
Whitney Duncan: To me I have always loved records. It’s what my dad loved, and he got me into it, and that is what I have grown up with. I think that there is a part of people who want to preserve the past, and right now I think old is new again, and I think with bands and big chains wanting to sell vinyl, it is just making it more popular. It is a mixture of the people who have grown up with it and always loved vinyl and a mixture of new people who have never seen a record spin.
[I then spoke with my daughter, Hannah Belcher (pictured right), who came with me to the Record Store Day event.]
What do you think about your first Record Store Day and the historical importance of music on vinyl records?
The record store here in Columbia is small but very exciting. I met some nice people and looked through some awesome records. I believe the history of records is important because I remember being eight years old, listening to “Fox and the Hound” on record, Glenn Miller, and Elvis Presley, and that has led up to amazing artists of today, but I never forget who started it all. Some say out with the old and in with the new, but sometimes it’s good to escape the present and look into a generation that is much simpler and amazing.