The Record Player

I think most people go through life having some sort of collection – fortunately I haven’t reached the obsessive hoarder stage yet but for my boyfriend and I it’s our LP’s we collect and enjoy together. For me there’s something deeply nostalgic about vinyl records, we’ve always had a record player in our house and even as a youngster I used to very carefully put records on. I can still remember my Dad telling me to be delicate with putting the needle on the record! I always think that these mysterious black disks have an immediacy that digital recordings don’t have and it’s the analogue recording methods which give even old records a fresh feeling.


Sometimes with a song I’ve heard many times before it feels as though the band are in the room with you when you get a great record! It’s the skill of the band, the studio mixing, mastering and analogue recording which brings out the unexpected beauty in a classic song on an LP. I think the sound of an LP is most noticeable on older pre-1980’s records even if it’s crackly vinyl you can hear the original mastering of how an album was intended to sound rather than the modern mastering process which often lowers bass tones in the mix.

Over the last year my interest in listening to records has brought me to Mr Drayton’s record player, its a pretty unusual event – a group of people sitting in the dark listening to a record from start to finish. But it’s fascinating the nuances of the music that you notice when your not concentrating on
anything else, it just goes to show how bombarded we are in our daily lives. We never really make time to ‘listen’ and experience music anymore, rather we subconsciously let it become the background noise to our day.

Thanks to Mr Drayton’s my record collection has developed it’s own split personality as I’ve started to collect everything from American rock to classical, it’s really opened my mind on songs and albums I’ve not heard since my age was a single digit! (I’ll not admit how long ago that was). Some of my favourites were Lou Reed’s Transformer and Stevie Wonder’s Innervisions, Talking Book was one of my Dad’s favourite albums so Stevie’s funky voice certainly took me
back.

You can find Mr Drayton’s Record Player at the Tyneside Cinema it’s a great venue and held in the digital lounge which occasionally smells like chips but not in a bad way. As a semi regular attendee I’ve also met some great friends along with Mr D himself who is a local BBC broadcaster and general all round funny man, so if your wanting to drop by for the latest season it starts next Thursday (the 17th) with the Micheal Jackson classic ‘Thriller’ at 7:30. Best zombie shuffle and one handed glittery gloves at the ready.

I do still listen to music when I’m working there’s something particularly soothing about the rotations of the pottery wheel timed to music; I think I’ve come to appreciate music more as a companion to my day rather than a distraction. What music do you listen to while your working away or do you prefer to contemplate life more quietly?

One thought on “The Record Player

  1. leonie says:

    What a brilliant idea!
    Years ago, whilst still in New Zealand, I would meet a friend at his place after I’d finished work for the evening. We would select a record from his extensive collection and sit on the floor in the dark drinking Darjeeling tea. I have fond memories of those evenings.

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