simply vinyl

Last Christmas, my youngest daughter received a phonograph.  Since then, she has accumulated a few, but not too many albums.  She’s a teenager – there are numerous other distractions to occupy her attention. She is a huge Lana Del Rey fan. Other than that, her musical interest is quite diverse. Recently, she went shopping to add to her collection.  Being fifteen, she has limited funds.  Being fifty-three, I have limited funds, as well.  Imagine that.

Billboard Chart 

She had three albums to choose from and only enough money for one.

  • The Beatles   The Magical Mystery Tour     
  • Jimi Hendrix   Electric Ladyland
  • Harry Styles Harry Styles 

time capacity – the vinyl beginnings

A phonograph record is an analog sound storage medium in the form of a flat disc with an inscribed, modulated spiral groove. The groove usually starts near the periphery and ends near the center of the disc. At first, the discs were commonly made from shellac.  In the 1950s polyvinyl chloride became common. Recently, records have been called vinyl records, or simply vinyl.

The phonograph disc record was the primary medium used for music reproduction throughout the 20th century. Records retained the largest market share even when new formats such as the compact cassette were mass-marketed. By the 1980s, digital media, in the form of the compact disc, had gained a larger market share, and the vinyl record left the mainstream in 1991. From the 1990s to the 2010s, records continued to be manufactured. Vinyl records have made a notable niche resurgence in the early 21st century. As of 2017, 48 record pressing facilities remain worldwide.

Fun fact / side note – Thomas Edison invented the phonograph in 1877 .


Phonograph records are generally described by their diameter in inches, the rotational speed in revolutions per minute (rpm) at which they are played (​8 13, ​16 23, ​33 13, 45, 78), and their time capacity, determined by their diameter and speed – LP , EP, and last but not least, the level of fidelity. Yeah, baby!

LP stands for Long Playing, and is another word for ‘album’.  The term is now also often used for CDs and digital downloads.

Jacket Required

Regardless of what Phil Collins says, you just can’t have ‘vinyl’ without a killer sleeve. Great care and attention to detail go into jacket designs.  My daughter’s selections alone are indicative of that fact. Between the three selections, the Harry Styles debut album pales in comparison to its competition. Kids nowadays.

Speaking of that, she chose the Beatles album.  Harry had only 10 songs.  But the Mystery Tour was truly Magical  – it contained a 24 page collector’s photo booklet. Sweet! She’s a good kid, though. The next day I went out and purchased Electric Ladyland.  It’s Hendrix! What was I supposed to do? Besides, I can be quite the pushover. Sometimes.

Bonus track

Like my daughter, I too had a decision.  How should I close a postal tribute to the vinyl record?

With a totally random, yet appropriately themed selection, of course.

Spin it!

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