Aussie Life

Scratches are Everything

You’ve all heard of the expression ‘what goes around comes around’, well I’m at that age when certain fashion trends and lifestyle trends are in vogue once again, no more so than the humble record player. We still have our Rega Planar 2 (circa 1989) which we lugged around the world with us. It was stored in the shed and then repacked and re-stored on its trip up to Brisbane. Now that we are in our own home, it has finally been unpacked, the dust blown off and connected up to the built-in sound system it doesn’t even need a new stylus, it’s in that good nic.

Sadly some of our albums and singles have been ‘lost’ along our life’s journey, especially with a move across the world but we clung on to the albums that meant the most to us. Chief has a far more exciting record collection than me. He was first through the door of Our Price when a new album was released and now has heaps of originals from the 1970’s & ’80s and some are worth a bob or two today. We reminisced of how we saved our pocket money up for that longed for album and the excitement of finally having it in our hands. The lyrics were on the inside sleeve and I’d spend all day learning every word of every song. And then there was that undeniable shape of a wrapped up album underneath the Christmas tree, such excitement!

It has been wonderful having a trip down memory lane replaying our LP’s and singles, taking us back to a certain place and time.  For instance;  I LOVED Duran Duran and their 1982 album Rio was just the best album EVER (I’m not going to apologise for that). I can remember fighting with my brother and knocking into the record player which caused the stylus to screech across the record and left a nasty crackle right at the point of the intro of the title track. I was fuming at the time but the memory of that incident has been embedded in my album and will always be there.

It got us thinking that today there is a whole generation who won’t ever experience that trip down memory lane, let alone the trip to the record shop, that experience of trying to line up the start of a track as you lowered the stylus and the sound of those scratches!

Mum and Dad had a record player that would take a whole stack at once and the next record would automatically drop down at the end of the previous one – 1970’s technology at its finest! Unfortunately that didn’t always go to plan and I can remember when a record dropped down too soon causing damage to such an extent that the stylus became stuck in the groove and needed a helping hand to move along.

Who could forget that scene from the Bo Derek and Dudley Moore film 10? Bo Derek’s character liked to make love to Ravel’s Bolero and she and Dudley were in the throws of passion when the record got stuck and there was some confusion as to what was stuck exactly!  Haha, that whole scene would be lost on a whole generation today!

Of course our youngsters will have memories associated with the music they play but it’s just a different experience; it doesn’t seem quite so fulfilling somehow.  It’s fabulous that there is so much music available to us on the internet and for free with sites such as Pandora and Spotify. Albums can be downloaded, libraries and playlists can be created which is all wonderful and I am a part of this modern music scene but when all is said and done, I’m grateful for the musical memories from my childhood. What about you?  Do you have a vinyl memory?

By Waking the Wombat

Life - part two; Australia. Having spent the first 39 years of my life in England, with two adult children who don't need me so much, a workaholic husband and a head full of stuff waiting to be unleashed, Waking the Wombat is my place to share life's experiences with you.

8 replies on “Scratches are Everything”

We still use our Rotel amplifier and Luxman record player. There is nothing like a stirring Scotts Guards Pipes and Drums rendition of Scortland The Brave at full blast in stereo to get the pulses racing. Great revenge too if you have massive speakers and detest your noisy neighbours..


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