My friend Ben insists that vinyl will never die. He’s so convinced of this that his wife bought him an old turntable on eBay for his birthday a few years back. He was elated! I mocked him.
Since then, I’ve taken to buying him records every time I spot a rare jewel in a thrift store. I sift through the discarded LPs to dig up the one album that to me is quintessential “vinyl.” My retro scavenger hunt has added records to Ben’s collection like the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack, STYX’s “Mr. Roboto” single and the Village People. Then there was that one Jackson’s record that is my favorite find to date. It wasn’t the Jackson 5, because there were six of them on the cover. And I’m still trying to figure out why Michael’s hands and feet were glowing.
More mocking of course.
But maybe Ben should be mocking me?
According to this article on Wired magazine’s website, vinyl may be making a comeback. As digital downloads continue to become the prevalent method of acquiring music, the CDs main advantage over vinyl – its portability – is becoming more of a non-factor for music fans. As a result, many are opting for the more “interactive” experience of listening to music on turntables at home. Audiophiles are opting for the more dynamic sound and rich tones of music on the traditional analog format versus the compressed digital sound of CDs.
There has been such a resurgence in popularity for vinyl that Amazon has launched a vinyl only section to their online marketplace. To give added value to consumers, some record labels are including free digital downloads of the music with the purchase of a release on vinyl – thus virtually eliminating the need for CDs altogether.
Could vinyl’s resurgence be the death of the CD?