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Vinyl Junkies: Adventures in Record Collecting

3.64  ·  Rating Details  ·  411 Ratings  ·  48 Reviews
Not too far away from the flea markets, dusty attics, cluttered used record stores and Ebay is the world of the vinyl junkies. Brett Milano dives deep into the piles of old vinyl to uncover the subculture of record collecting. A vinyl junkie is not the person who has a few old 45s shoved in the cuboard from their days in high school. Vinyl Junkies are the people who will t ...more
Paperback, 230 pages
Published November 10th 2003 by St. Martin's Griffin
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(showing 1-30 of 764)
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Apr 15, 2013 Bill rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, 2013
very interesting book about the collecting mania in general, and collecting vinyl records in particular. with some interesting interviews with musicians who are record collectors...peter woolf, peter buck of r.e.m. etc. and one guy who has a separate building to house his 100,000 records!

personally, i think you are either born a collector or not. i've been collecting things since i was a little kid...started off with bottle caps and matchbooks, both of which cost nothing, but was still a lot of
Apr 14, 2013 Tosh rated it really liked it
Obsessions really tells what a person is, and there is nothing more beautiful than a person who collects books or in this case vinyl. Not CD's mind you, but the beautifully designed object that is known as a vinyl record. The anticipation of going to a record store or even a yard sale that has a stack of 12" LP''s or for that matter a pile of 45rpm singles is a series of blissful moments. Brett Milano's "Vinyl Junkies" covers the actual feeling while profiling the collector and their special nee ...more
Ed Wagemann
Aug 30, 2010 Ed Wagemann rated it liked it

Vinyl Junkies
While doing research for “Who’s Who In Rockism”, the name Brett Milano kept popping up. Milano is a music journalist for the College Music Journal, the Boston Herald and the Boston Phoenix. I first came upon the writing of Brett Milano years ago while reading the liner notes of a Rhino records CD called The Very Best of Todd Rundgren (circa 1997) but it is Milano’s 2003 Vinyl Junkies that seems to be his calling card in any detailed discussion of Rockism. Even though I don’t rememb
Mar 18, 2012 Vanessa rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2012
This book reminded me a bit of The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession in that it's a tale of collecting fever made accessible, understandable and readable. Brett Milano, a Boston music journalist, is unlike Susan Orlean because he gets the urge all too well.

Milano captures so many things here: the thrill of the hunt, the passion for any kind of music outside the mainstream (generally the more esoteric the better although one collector is hopelessly devoted to obsessed with Olivia
Charles McEnerney
May 12, 2008 Charles McEnerney rated it really liked it
I reread this as I was editing my interview with Eli "Paperboy" Reed for Well-Rounded Radio as he is a bit of a vinyl junkie as well. As someone who buys A LOT of music, but doesn't necessarily care that much about the format it's on (unless it's a really crappy mp3), it's interesting to read this book and try and find that line between having to have the music vs. having to have a collectible item. I will admit I've done the same for certain artists, but this is something of a psychological st ...more
Apr 13, 2013 Jason rated it it was amazing
Actually a really good book inside the mind of a vinyl hoarder, oops, I mean collector. Great amusing stories of like minded folks with the passion for all things vinyl. I didn't want it to end. It was very well written and amusing.

This book is terrific. The author looks at record collecting from every possible angle -- from the Freudian aspects of the drive to the possible reasons why collectors have trouble finding girls. It's full of wonderful interviews with the famous -- Peter Wolff, Peter
Boston Pug
Jan 24, 2016 Boston Pug rated it it was ok
This book is truly like my record collection...all over the place. I loved the chapters were musicians talk about their collections and obsession.
Mar 11, 2016 Steve rated it liked it
Nice, rambling collection about vinyl collectors, many of them musicians. Mostly 33's, and some 45's (little on 78's - except a chapter in Crumb, who sneers at the author's decision to collect psychedelia).

No bibliography, no discography. Could use an updated edition (first published in 2003).

Other books on vinyl collecting had me going to Youtube for at least a couple artists every chapter. While this did introduce me to some interesting new bands, it was only about one artist every couple of
Dec 12, 2007 Stephanie rated it really liked it
i like this a helluva lot (though it is making me feel like the one female in the world who collects records, which i know isn't true). anyone who's ever collected anything is likely to love this, actually.
Phil Wilkins
Jan 09, 2014 Phil Wilkins rated it it was amazing
This book is about, record collectors, the act of record collecting and the general love for music both mainstream, obscure and just down right freaky. For the music fan this is Mills & Boon reading. For those related or taken on the challenge of a partner who is a record collector an insight into the mind of your loved one.

The books tries to explain the passion of collecting from many different perspectives, through the eyes of collectors (some famous - like Peter Buck (of REM fame), Robert
Mar 16, 2014 Carey rated it liked it
#1 thing I learned from this book was that my fellow female record collecting friends and I don't exist, so that was pretty cool. -________________-
Emmett Davenport
Mar 10, 2010 Emmett Davenport rated it it was ok
I'm not sure I'm going to be able to finish this book, as I feel insulted by the author's regard to the female vinyl collector. We do indeed exist.
Jun 28, 2015 Koozebane rated it really liked it
Shelves: paperbacksummer
4.5 stars, read for the #paperbacksummer challenge.

While the book does get into the obsessive and competitive aspects of record collecting, I appreciate that the main focus is love of the music. The tendency to call record collecting a male pastime is annoying, though Milano does interview several female collectors (even if they're somehow portrayed as less hardcore). It's fun to see cool musicians pop up every few pages, and I have to give the guy credit for discussing songs and albums that e

Feb 01, 2016 Lady rated it liked it
Shelves: music, non-fiction
As a vinyl collector myself, I was thrilled to receive this book as a holiday gift. I eagerly devoured it and came away with a very mixed opinion. Some of the author's anecdotes and observations were right on target and/or side-splittingly funny, but I was very disappointed by some of the generalizations. The one chapter dealing with female collectors such as myself was, frankly, crap that irritated me more than a little, singlehandedly losing a star on this book's rating. But it is not without ...more
Apr 07, 2015 Dan rated it liked it
Brett Milano talks to a lot of vinyl collectors about their tactics, passions and favorite memories as they criss cross the world looking for rare singles, LPs and 78s. Anyone who's wondered how or why someone would pay top dollar for that one punk single from the 70s from that one band that only released that one great album before breaking up should read this book.
Bob O'bannon
Feb 14, 2014 Bob O'bannon rated it liked it
If you've seen the TV show "Hoarders," you get the basic idea of this book, which is a series of anecdotes about and interviews with rabid music collectors -- most of whom are just regular Joes, but some of whom are as famous as former REM guitarist Peter Buck. Buck is so devoted to collecting other artists' music that he claims he doesn't even recognize some of the REM rarities brought to him by fans. Some of the stories here are kind of sad, in that they showcase people who are addicted to rec ...more
Feb 06, 2008 Joshua rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2008
Highly geeky book about some of the ultimate geeks or nerds or what have you--vinyl record collectors. These guys (women seemingly need not apply for this as the writer can only find one to write about) are on a higher level. This was enjoyable but the discussion of ultra rare blues/jazz 78s was sometimes lost on me as I have no clue who the artists were. I enjoyed the rock related people more. I did see myself in this a bit as over the years I've owned well over 5,000 vinyl, cassettes and cds.. ...more
May 30, 2011 Shanna rated it liked it
Some of the chapters were pretty interesting, while others tended to lag. At first, I scoffed at the collectors who spent thousands of dollars on music they never intended to listen to. And the collectors that already owned the music on CD, but needed to own the vinyl. Then I thought about my own book collecting habits and realized that, other than the fact that I am not willing to drop a grand on Oscar Wilde, we are not all that different. I collect books the in the same fashion. And the author ...more
Oct 07, 2015 Brent rated it it was ok
For vinyl junkies only. If you don't buy records anymore and don't see the attraction of this method of music recording, then this book isn't for you. If you still buy the occasional record and comb thru antique stores records while the wife looks for a set of salt/pepper shakers, then this will be a fun read.
Kevin Summers
Jun 28, 2013 Kevin Summers rated it liked it
This book catalogs interviews and activities of some absolutely obsessed collectors of records (the so-called "vinyl junkies"). If you are like me (i.e. you occasionally stop by the local shops to scrounge the clearance bins for dollar records by bands from the 70's and 80's), then this book is not about you.

Sample quote: "Love for the music, love for the artifact, the thrill of the chase: those are the three elements that turn a garden-variety music lover into a vinyl junkie."
P.e. lolo
Apr 17, 2012 P.e. lolo rated it really liked it
This book I really enjoyed, then again I have every three dog night record including one made in Japan. I of course think this is cool just like finding a mono instead of stero. Now I am on to the first pressings of the records I like. Don't come close to the # these people have but I do have 50's org 45's cann't beat those do whop groups or Fat's. Blues are hard to find, like it said in the book. For me a good read for anyone into vinyl.
Mar 24, 2014 Stephanie rated it really liked it
Not a complete review just something that I still believe:

Page 27: "What really got me was the smell of the records. I grew up with--maybe it was the pressing plant they used, for some reason records on the Casablanca label had a smell that blew our minds- when you smell that, it brings you right back to childhood."

Roger Manning from Jellyfish*
I love Jellyfish!
Jun 03, 2013 Jeanette rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: music
I really enjoyed this book. I found it quite interesting to read about different people and their collections and the different ways that everyone handles their vinyl obsession :) It definitely made me feel better about my own fixation on collecting to read about people who have taken it way farther than I have. Very interesting and entertaining. Every record collector should read this!
Brent Irvine
Dec 04, 2013 Brent Irvine rated it really liked it
I am a die hard Vinyl fan, and this offers a unique view into record collecting from the collector viewpoint. I thought I was a record collector, but honestly these guys are so far off the deep end compared to where we are, we're mostly just music lovers by comparison.

The chapter on "weird records" is worth the price of the whole book!
Oct 15, 2007 Alan rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: The Afflicted
Recommended to this music addict by someone similarly afflicted. Written by a journalist with the disease, granting great insight into the condition from interviews with Jeff Connolly (Monoman), Peter Wolf, Peter Buck, and examinations of individuals eccentric often beyond the wildest fancy of the best songwriter.
May 19, 2008 Jason rated it it was amazing
this book was great...there were times in my life where hunting down vinyl was my foremost daily was so nice to read about people with like obsessions....

music is so incredibly meaningful and important, books like this make me understand that it's ok to really believe that...
Mike Balsom
Jan 23, 2015 Mike Balsom rated it really liked it
As someone who has been collecting vinyl for almost 40 years, this book allowed me to feel a bit better about my obsession! Some very interesting characters are introduced here, many of whom have a much deeper obsession than my own! Humorous and well-written, by a vinyl junky himself!
Oct 18, 2007 Benjamin rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, music
A quick, very fun, and poorly-written read. I'm not sure if this would appeal only to vinyl enthusiasts, but it certainly helps. Most likely though, if you've collected anything in your lifetime, you'll enjoy the stories of crate-diggers and 78 hunters.
May 01, 2011 Matthias rated it it was ok
i should love it, but I guess self-hatred kicks in when it comes to the smell of certain vinyl labels or why "sammy squirrel teaches the multiplication tabel" is one of the most disturbing records ever.
Michael D
Aug 06, 2011 Michael D rated it really liked it
A genial ode to the black platter. Many amusing characters and tales here on intense music fandom and well worth a read if you have an obsessive trait. (you are not as bad as these guys...)
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“It’s funny that because a lot of old jazz is being sampled now, you are finding a lot of young kids, a lot of scenesters and clubgoers, who are getting praise, laurels and dates with women because they listen to people like Herbie Hancock. In my day, listening to Herbie Hancock would have gotten you beaten up.” 1 likes
“And here I’m learning one of the secrets: that good stereo sound is a psychedelic experience. I’m not just seeing Satchmo’s horn, I’m seeing the shape of the notes and the color of the sound. When he sings, I’m looking deep down into his throat while the drums and bass push me from behind. So now I understand why a lot of record collectors don’t do drugs—when they crank that stereo up, they’re already doing one. Every vinyl junkie has a moment like this, when the sound hits you between the eyes and you’re hooked for life.” 1 likes
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