People have many techniques for getting through lockdown and other covid restrictions. From making sure they use their daily exercise to picking up a new hobby.
One of the things that got me through these difficult times was music. Music is part of my life in many ways.
Before Covid I loved going to gigs, music festivals and going out to clubs. Dancing and singing along to music with my friends and having a few drinks was one of my favourite things to do.
With this side gone I really wanted to keep in touch with this important part of my life as much as possible.
I always listened to music, through headphones or speakers. I listen in the shower, whenever I’m walking more than 5 minutes on my own, in the car, everywhere really.
With lockdown, I could listen to my music but had less opportunities for live music. I felt like I wanted a fresh way to listen to music.
That’s when I got into buying vinyl. Although I had received a record player and some albums a year or so ago, I never really bought anymore and only listened to them on occasion.
However, Covid has given me more time to fill. I feel like I have the time to sit down and put an album on. Whether it was while I was doing my university work or just relaxing by myself or with friends.
One of the parts that surprised was how fun looking for records was.
Whether it was searching online for a copy of an album that meant a lot to me or sifting through the rows of new or second-hand albums in a record store.
In Canterbury, where I live, there are a few different options for how to get your records. So, the main reason for this blog is to help anyone else in how to collect vinyl.
Although some of these tips are specific to Canterbury it can be applied to record shops around the country, and the online stuff is not limited by location.
Firstly, like anywhere else, you can buy them online through websites like Amazon, eBay or HMV.
These are great if you are looking for something recent, or really popular classic albums from bands like The Beatles. HMV only sells newly printed first-hand copies of albums. Amazon and eBay have both second-hand and new but the quality can vary tremendously so be careful.
Now in Canterbury there are multiple shops to purchase your vinyl. Sounds records and Vinylstore Jr are both stores that have second-hand and new. The HMV stores only new and Canterbury Rocks sells only second-hand.
Browsing aimlessly through these record stores, despite being an enjoyable time-killer, doesn’t always get you what you want.
The main tip I’d give is to talk to the people in the stores. Mostly they are people who have a love of music and vinyl. They are often willing to take down your name and number to ring you when a record you’ve been looking for is in stock or even order it in for you.
If you are looking for something new let them know and see if they have any suggestions. If you build up a rapport with them, you can ask them to play a record for you to test it out.
For details of the independent canterbury stores, see below: