Is It Ideal to Start Collecting Vinyl Records Right Now?

By 12 November, 2020

Collecting anything is a very intimate process. No matter what type of collection someone pursues, it’s going to look a little different than anyone else’s collection. Often collecting leads the collector down a path of study, research, and introspection. Often the collector ends up with highly specialized knowledge that not everyone else is going to be able to relate to, understand, or appreciate (but those that get it, really get it). Truly great collections take time and energy—a consistent study over a long period. Then, even after all the learning, there’s still the hunt—the seeking out of rare items that are hard to find—the pieces that make any collection truly spectacular.

Difficulties aside, collecting can be one of the most rewarding hobbies there is. The physical items that have been found and compiled provide joy and look great in a home, they sometimes entertain as well, but it’s more than this. It’s in the process of going out into the world and finding things that are hidden or underappreciated and giving them a home that the magic happens. There’s an element of adventure involved in the searching process.

This being said, if you’re thinking about beginning a record collection today, you might be worried about how the pandemic will affect the browsing-in-the-record-store part of it. Fear not, the internet has you covered my friend. If records call to you, collect records.

Collecting Seems To Be A Natural Urge

Believe it or not, humans are—at least when compared to other animals—natural collectors. Studies have estimated that 70% of children have some form of collection growing up, be it rocks, bugs, action figures, stuffed animals, or crayons. Sadly, as we age we tend to give up on the things we did as a child, even if they brought us daily joy. It is estimated that by the age of 60, only 13-15% of people maintain a collection. If you don’t feel like being one of the people who gave up on their childish enthusiasm for life, don’t be.

Collecting Doesn’t Have To Be Expensive

Yes, collecting can be pricey if you go deep, but you don’t have to follow the money to be a good collector. There are countless avenues to explore if you’re looking for records to add to your collection—second-hand stores, yard sales, and online websites offer alternatives to stores devoted to collector’s items. Even the secondary elements don’t have to cost an arm and a leg. If you’re collecting records, take a little time to read through some turntable reviews to figure out the best option in your price range. If you’re worried about overspending, give yourself a budget per week or month for your collection. If you want to get something a little on the pricey side, you’ll have to save up for a few months to purchase it.

You Can Make Your Collection About Whatever You Want

You can choose the guideline by which you collect records. You might just really enjoy the album art of punk rockers. You might want to get every possible version of every song by The Fall. You might want to collect records from 1962. You might want to get the most popular album from each month for each year. Sure, you can follow the guidelines put forward by record collecting culture at large, but you don’t have to. There are no rules. Your record collection is just that, it’s yours.

The Only Actual Concern When Collecting Anything

Collecting is fun and it’s easy to let it take over a little bit. If you share your living space with someone else (or several someones) make sure that everyone is pleased with where you store your collection. Maybe not everyone wants their living room invaded by pop records from 1981. Have some sort of storage system in place so that you can find the specific records you’re looking for, but also so that you’re not infringing on someone else’s peace of mind. As long as everyone is on the same page storage-wise, you’re in the clear.

The bottom line is, the world is crazy and life is unpredictable. If a pastime or hobby is calling to you, you’ve got no reason not to give it a go. Sure, maybe keep an eye on how much money it’s costing you and make sure you have a plan for what you’re going to do with all the records you gain, but pursuing something that gets you excited that keeps you curious and always learning? This is a very good thing. So few people find something in life that is fun and interesting, if you have that, don’t let it go to waste. Happy collecting!

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