'I suppose to start a blog you need a concept. I have a very simple one (though I wouldn't dare suggest it to be original in any respect) and am going to try to go with it to see where it takes me. The concept has been partly inspired by an event I've been attending at the Tyneside Cinema in Newcastle these last two years hosted by a very good bloke called MrDrayton http://meladdo.blogspot.co.uk/ Mr Drayton's concept is simple too. He plays a classic record on vinyl, uninterrupted from start to finish accompanied by a slideshow of photographs and art related to the artist/band we are listenng to. This is followed by a quiz and drink fuelled discussion of what we've heard. It's not academic, or muso, just enormous fun and I've formed some good friendships with similarly minded souls through it. It has attracted a band of almost messianic devotees while also bring down a whole range of newcomers for specific evenings drawn in by the appeal of a particular album. It's invariably one of the highlights of my week and numerous others would say the same.
My discovery of these evenings coincided for me with moving in to a new flat in Newcastle and being reunited with my record collection after having to banish them for the best part of fifteen years to my parents' attic while I lived an itinerant, drifting life abroad as a teacher and trainer in Europe. During this time I hauled great piles of CDs along with me but the experience was nothing like the rich relationship I have again with music now thanks to a small investment in turntable, stylus, amp, cables, speakers and precious vinyl.
I'm also fortunate (or perhaps this isn't coincidental at all), that my rediscovery of this unbeatable concept in that my epiphany has coincided with a rediscovery in society as a whole of the joys of this format, a rejection of processed, packaged ipad vision of the modern hipster and return to listening to music as it was originally intended to be listened to by the artists that created it - in entirity and in sequence. Newcastle's few remaining record stores are placing increasing emphasis on their vinyl racks and stock and the range of newly released and second hand records and the wide eyed enthusiasm of those who work there for it is a joy to behold. Long may it continue.
To finally get round to the concept I'm proposing for this blog.I'm going to focus on selected records in my collection one at a time, sit through them from start to finish and post my feelings and reflections on them, sometimes entwined with personal memories from when I listened to them first and links to related things which might interest others. Hardly genius! This will be the sole focus of my writing. * Certainly not planning to publish my diaries.Hopefully I'll master the intracisies of blogging while I do so. Can't be that difficult! So apologies for any typos, mis-spellings and I hope there'll be something along the way that you appreciate and would like to comment upon. Here goes... launched on the sea of blog!
* Post Script (added a few months later). I've broken my pledge and will make other posts not solely reviews of my record collection. Always music related and generally inspired by the reviews I'll write.'