I’ve had a great many hobbies over the years which have occupied my full attention for a great length of time. It began with video games in my youth, then moved onto sports cards, and later into trading card games beginning with Star Wars CCG, then the Pokemon Trading Card Game. I then went full-bore into competitive Yu-Gi-Oh, with barely any success.
After wasting many thousands of dollars on Duel Monsters, I then went back to sports cards for a while before taking on Magic the Gathering. MTG was the first hobby at which I actually made a substantial profit for my efforts. Of course, hobbies don’t have to make money to be enjoyable, but at times, to make my hobbies worth pursuing, I had to pursue them with a budget in mind.
For a time I considered veering into vinyl record collecting. I grew up quite the radiohead and have become quite the audiophile over the years. Of course, music is even more vast than the card collecting world, so I spent months doing considerable research into the medium. I even purchased a few limited edition vinyls – all of which I still have – to begin my collection. But, I turned back to trading cards, as that was where my blogging was actually beginning to create revenue for me. To this day, I haven’t lost money on Magic the Gathering and for a time I actually made significant money flipping Pokemon cards.
Finally, though, as I’ve been settling down with my fiance in Vermont, I realized I needed a hobby that both he and I could enjoy together. As it turns out, we had a space in our house – our enclosed and heated back porch – that we didn’t really have a purpose for yet. When I suggested that we turn it into a music room, my bae leaped at the prospect and immediately purchased a fairly professional turntable, good speakers, and a decent amp.
So, when all that arrived and we’d set it up, we went to our local record store, Mountain Music in Rutland. While he sells other things, his primary business is vinyl, and he does quite well with it. We purchased over $200 worth of vinyl, most of it recent reissues, but it was all killer material, including an original press of Bruce Springsteen’s Born in the USA, David Bowie’s self-titled album (really only known for Space Oddity), the Doors self-titled smash hit, the Foo Fighters’ Medicine at Midnight, Led Zeppelin’s IV, and Tom Petty’s Wildflowers. The buy I was most excited about, though, was a special edition release of Green Day’s Insomniac plus a limited edition live LP. We have a few others on the way, as well.
We even stopped by a small record store in New Hampshire, which didn’t have much of a selection, but we popped a 45 of Chicago’s big hit Hard Habit to Break, and it was in good shape. You can’t beat that for two dollars, and the guy was really cool and had just recently reopened his store. I’m a sucker for helping out small businesses, so I would’ve bought something regardless.
While this is a drastic shift in my attention, I’ll still be occasionally writing about sports cards and trading card games. But, as far as where my spending money is going, it will be focused more on vinyl going forward. I’m looking forward to writing about my vinyl collecting journey with my fiance and hope to write about the many thrift and record store finds that we discover over the coming years.
Perhaps the best part of finally pursuing vinyl collecting after talking about it for years is my fiance and I get to know one another’s personal music tastes better. After all, music is best when you can share it with someone you love.
If you’re into vinyl, or any type of music-related collecting, let me know. I’m always open to music suggestions, as my personal tastes are rather eclectic. If you hate vinyl and think it’s stupid, well, to each their own. The good news is, even if you don’t like vinyl but you love music, I hope that my musical discoveries can still help you find new things to stream on a daily basis. While I may not write as much in a review sort of way as I have with sports & other trading cards in the past, I hope that you find my thoughts on the vinyl collecting hobby and music in general helpful in finding something new and cool to listen to for your personal playlists.