When you sit down to indulge in the one of the country’s finest streetpress magazines, where do you do it from? Are you sitting on your couch in your living room with a latte or maybe something a little bit stronger? It’s funny as I sit here in my beat laboratory thinking about how the world of music has evolved and changed over the past 60 years throughout the media landscape. Even though these days it seems that the album journey and the continuity between tracks is long dead with iTunes and single releases and being able to cherry pick how and what you listen to and when as well.
It’s no secret that through Record Store Day in Australia and around the world, vinyl is definitely making a comeback. Whether you ride a fixed gear bicycle or have a ripping moustache or beard, if you are a hipster there is probably a fair chance that you are getting into your vinyl. It was on my trip to America last year that I was initiated into the club and it is a day I will never ever forget. I went to Third Man Records to record a 7” single at Jack White’s famous little booth. Since then, I have started my own record collection of vinyl and, although it is a little harsh on your hip pocket from week to week and you might be subjected to having Weetbix for dinner, it is definitely worth it.
One of the coolest things however from becoming ‘hip’ and listening to vinyl is discovering the wealth of awesomeness that is my parents. In a time where vinyl ruled the world, they definitely got onto some great collecting and it has been such a journey of discovery through both time and space in listening to some great music along the way. Everybody has their favourite vinyl, however, right now I am going to share with you four of my favourites that I am currently indulging in (in no particular order mind you).
JJ Cale – Okie (1974)
This is a record brimming with cool. In fact, JJ Cale (the late great legend, God rest his soul) is the king of cool. The first JJ Cale album I ever got into was Naturally which was his debut and featured tracks like ‘Call Me The Breeze’, ‘After Midnight’, ‘Crazy Mama’ and ‘Magnolia’. Throughout every album there is somewhat of a bad arse swagger that you just don’t see in albums anymore. From the simplistic song writing to the melodic arrangements and horn lines this is the real deal. Although it’s two years since his passing, he will be long remembered by his musical legacy and this is an album well worth checking out.
The Rolling Stones- Let It Bleed (1969)
The album with quite possibly the greatest opening and closing track ever. Recorded in London and LA, this is a masterpiece and an album that just gets better with age (like a fine wine) no matter how many times you listen to it from the classic tracks to the lesser known ones, it’s no surprise the songs are used on movie soundtracks all the time. An album from a band at the height of their powers. If you’ve heard it, you’ll know what I mean, if you haven’t, well you’re just silly.
Bruce Springsteen- Born To Run (1975)
This is the album that allowed me to understand the genius of Bruce Springsteen. Born To Run is a record that you remember where you were when you first heard it and what was happening in your life at the time. The great thing about vinyl is it is a lot harder to skip through an album and so you are forced to listen and indulge in every second, but then again, why would you want to skip through this slice of genius.
Bob Dylan- Blood On The Tracks (1975)
I was first introduced to ‘Tangled Up In Blue’ by KT Tunstall, however it was then that I discovered Bob Dylan and the classic sound of this album. Recorded in both New York City and then re-recorded in Minneapolis, because Dylan was so pedantic, the amazing part about this album is a few tracks like ‘Simple Twist of Fate’ and ‘Buckets Of Rain’ were recorded with just Dylan and a bass player. Both simplistic and complex in the lyrics and arrangements of these songs, it is an album that will always be one of my favourites.
Drop the needle on some of these classic records and indulge in some amazing periods of music today. If you’re looking for a great record outlet be sure to check out Real Music down Lt. Malop Street, he has an awesome selection and the goods on what you are looking for.
Written by Tex Miller