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Subject: Records (was - Re: Another announcer - David Elliott (WHRB Boston))
From: Jon Goldberg <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Jon Goldberg <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Tue, 13 Feb 2018 11:43:16 -0500

text/plain (83 lines)

"All recorded music"?? No sir. The methods have changed, as they have tended to do 
every generation, but music is still being recorded and listened to, and will be for a long 
time to come. 

What is a record (musically speaking)? At one point it was a cylinder. Then, very 
breakable discs that became standardized at 78 rpm. By the 1930's and "talkies," 
recordings could be done on film, and tape would follow soon after, in both reel and 
cassette formats. (And of course the ephemeral 8-track, which always seems to be the 
butt of jokes more than a truly successful invention - just like the Betamax, lol.) The 
heavy breakable 78's eventually ceded to "unbreakable" vinyl 33's, and 45's. (I still have 
one of those clip-on adapters that make it possible to play 45's on a standard turntable. 
Remember those little attachments?) The big LP's transformed into small CD's that 
"recorded" in digital terms instead of analog. Which led to music being recorded on no 
discs at all, available the same way that I type this post. But is it *really* any less valid 
this way? 

Sure, having been born in the 60's, my youth was all about the vinyl age, and I have to 
say that what I *really* miss are the 12" covers, the artwork, the booklets, etc. Yes, CD's 
still had all that, but on a much smaller scale. And yes, as music is tending to move 
online, I do miss the physical form of recording that you can browse in person at the 
store (something we also barely have anymore) - but on the other hand, it seems to me 
that we have more access to so much music online than we've ever had in the analog 
age, and in an instantly accessible way. 

A decade or so ago, I was still carrying around CD's and a CD Walkman everywhere I go, 
as I'm so often listening to music as I travel. That in itself is remarkable, given that when 
I was a preteen starting to get into opera, my only practical way to bring music around 
with me was in recording LP's to tape and carrying a small tape recorder (not yet a 
Walkman, though that was just around the corner). 

In fact, I have fond memories of the "pirating" that my dad and I used to do when I was a 
kid - we would build our own personal collections of music by raiding the several well-
stocked libraries in our area, and recording the vinyl to cassettes. And with my dad and I 
both having a bit of "type A" in us, lol, this was a complex process - adding up the 
timings on the records to see how best to fit them on the cassette (which actually meant 
having to time things ourselves if the info wasn't listed), having to watch out for 
imperfections/skips (my dad was more into having clean recordings - if there were too 
many audible pops and scratches, he wouldn't record it - if it was a piece I still wanted to 
have in my collection, I'd often record it anyway), and "post-production," which for my 
dad was writing the album and cast info on index cards to be filed away, and giving each 
cassette a number to go with those files. Of course, we did buy albums also, lol - but I'm 
sure the 2 of us were far from the only people to be making their own tapes of library 
recordings. ;-)

I remember a friend in college (this would have been around 1983/4) who got a CD 
player and was so excited about the new format. Funny that though the technology was 
exciting, I at first didn't like the sound I was hearing - TOO clean to my ears. But by 
1990, as new recordings I wanted were no longer being offered on LP's, I gave in. Now I 
wonder what the fuss was all about, lol. I still love my LP's, but CD's became far more 
manageable. But now, having so much music on our computers and phones (or mp3 
devices, etc), it's easy to see why even CD's are now a bit "passe" - even though I still 
buy them and play them. 

But of course I'm not saying anything here that isn't evident to all of us. Just that I don't 
think recorded music is going away anytime soon - it's just the way it's recorded. Anyone 
want to go back (exclusively) to the cylinder age?? ;-)

(And going back to the original topic as it relates - I love the very early recordings that 
David Elliott plays. A huge part of our history and legacy, and, "primitive" sound and all, 
so cool to hear. The way we record and listen has changed many times, but that doesn't 
negate the oldest recordings. No sound sissy I, lol.)

On Tue, 13 Feb 2018 10:34:12 -0500, donald kane <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

>I don't know what the opposite of sound sissy may be, but it's what
>I've always been.   All recorded music, as such, seems rapidly to
>be coming a thing of the past anyway.  What, exactly, is a "record"

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