Thursday, April 1, 2010

Crate diggin' in the new world... Part Trois

I got some questions after my last post in which I lamented my continuous search for The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan album on vinyl. A number of them focused on the fact that, yes, I could just order the damn album online and -- how convenient! -- get it shipped straight to my door. How convenient indeed.

But, alas, people who said this to me: I realize the Internet is a powerful tool when it comes to looking for things to buy. That development is something like a decade old at this point. But that's not the handle here. It reminds me of an interview ahead of D.C.'s last record in the Washington Post -- I'd link to it here, but I can't find it. Basically, Geologist (of Animal Collective fame) was asked what his 'White whale' was, as far as crate digging goes. If I remember correctly, his response was basically, "Not sure." He said, essentially, that with the Internet, it's not like there are a lot of records that are IMPOSSIBLE to find. Really, no matter how rare they are, it's a simple matter of whether -- or how much -- you want to pay for them, not a question of availability.

That's exactly right. Look, I know The Freewheelin' Bob Dylan isn't exactly a super-rare album by vinyl heads' standards, but it was essentially the record that opened the door for me to get into Dylan's music. It was the first one that really hooked me. That, and his first album, are also, I think, like relics in his repertoire. They show his roots. They're Woody Guthrie-esque which, of course, was the point. And I haven't been able to find it on used vinyl ever. Ceci la nature de la bĂȘte.

But as much as I'd love to have it on vinyl, I don't want to just get on a Web site and order it. When I (thought) I found it at Joe's last weekend, I was ecstatic, so much so that -- apparently -- as I was inspecting the record, I didn't take the time to look at just which album I was in fact buying. But that's what is great about doing this. It's not just simply buying the record to listen to it -- OK, with new records that's a part of it. But with the used stuff, it's the discovery. It's walking into a store not knowing what you're going to find. It's the feeling of walking out of a shop almost uncontrollably excited to get hope to play the new record that, conversely, is what keeps you coming back.

It's an interesting balance, for sure. I'd be interested to know what the Internets think about this. To anyone reading this -- crate diggers, especially -- what's your take on Web-buying records?

1 comment:

  1. Strictly off limits. It's all about the hunt.