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October 22, 2016

I love me some polyvinyl chloride as much as the next guy, for example, I have a twelve-foot by six-foot wall of it.

Kids!  Can we call them LPs (short for long player or long play) or records vs. vinyl (or worse yet vinyls). Call me old-fashioned – I hate the term vinyl.

Now I appreciate that records are back and I accept that for some people it is a fetish vs. a media source – that’s cool. I also realize that in a digital world the term “album” has survived and so saying you collect albums is a bit vague.  The term record has survived the digital age too – so to say you collect records is a bit vague too.  So I can see why people use the term vinyl to distinguish the medium from digital mediums.

LP is a great term.  Per Wikipedia, “the LP is an analog sound storage medium, a vinyl record format characterized by a speed of 33 13 rpm, a 12 or 10 inch (30 or 25 cm) diameter, and use of the microgroove groove specification. Introduced by Columbia in 1948, it was soon adopted as a new standard by the entire record industry. Apart from a few relatively minor refinements and the important later addition of stereophonic sound, it has remained the standard format for vinyl albums.”


I really don’t have a good reason to hate the term vinyl.  The HBO series Vinyl sucked so bad that it did not help the term. But I think the real issue is that I am old enough to be crusty about the issue. When I was a young collector all we had were vinyl records and we called them albums, records and LPs and we bought them at record stores.  I can’t remember ever using the term vinyl. So maybe I am just being a snob about the term. But patronize me, don’t say vinyl.  If this request seems unreasonable keep in mind you would never say let’s listen to some PVC. Oh hell – I am just glad you are listening with a serious ear!


From → Miscellaneous

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