Reporting Ron Matz
CATONSVILLE, Md. (WJZ)—If you’re a music fan you may not know this, but the sale of record albums is skyrocketing here in Baltimore and around the country.
Ron Matz reports from Catonsville that on Saturday the stores that sell them will be celebrating.
There’s something about vinyl. Just ask Alan Washington, who makes Trax on Wax a frequent stop.
“I have about 3,500 albums. Play them about every other day. Most of the classics from the ’70s and ’80s, especially like Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd. I also found the very first Temptations album in mint condition,” said Alan Washington, of Catonsville.
The popularity of the record album is soaring.
“Vinyl is coming back,” said Gary Gebler, owner of Trax on Wax on Frederick Road in Catonsville. “I think people are looking for a way to listen to music and enjoy music that actually takes a little bit of effort on their part.. You can look at things, read things and hear it the way it was made to be listened to.”
New industry figures show that vinyl record sales were up 52 percent last year.
“I have a lot of rock & roll and disco. I have some old doo wop and gospel too. I have every type of genre,” Washington said.
Gebler opened his popular store four years ago. At Trax on Wax, albums and turntables top the charts.
“If you look at it like an electrocardiogram, a record album goes up and down. A CD is flat line, straight across. You hear a lot of nuances you don’t hear in the CD. It’s a big difference,” he said.
Saturday is Record Store Day.
“Record Store Day Saturday is going to be off the hook. It’s the sixth annual. It’s huge. It’s like Christmas in April for independent record stores,” Gebler said. “We’ll have music throughout the day. We’ll have prizes and giveaways, a lot of limited edition releases. It’s going to be a fun celebration of the record album.”
First customers get a Jimi Hendrix poster and a chance to vinyl up limited editions from Bon Jovi, Wings and more.
“Jack White is the ambassador of Record Store Day this year. He has released one of the White Stripes albums that’s been long out of print. It’s called ‘Elephant,’ and there’s big buzz on that one,” Gebler said.
The record album is making a comeback as music lovers take another spin.
“I have a newer model turntable my wife bought me,” Washington said. “It’s a combination turntable, cassette player and CD player. I also have the old fashioned turntable with the diamond point needle which actually goes into a real stereo and amplifiers as well.”
This is the sixth year for Record Store Day. About 700 independent record stores around the country are participating.