Crate Digging is how people who collect vinyl describe the practice of going to record stores, antique shops, Goodwill, flea markets, garage sales or retail stores to find the LPs of their dreams.
Its kind of ‘hipster,’ to use this phrase but it fits, as records are basically displayed and stored in crates. I’ve been involved in this practice for a long time before there was a term for it. I bought my first record – from a crate at Montgomery Ward – in 1973. It was the soundtrack from the film Planet of the Apes (scored by Jerry Goldsmith). I was 12 years old and I purchased it with my own cash. I remember it setting me back about $1.99. I still have this record and it’s still playable.
And that’s when I started my crate digging habit, which was heaviest between 1979-1986. I stopped for a long time between 1986-2014. Back in ’86, I jumped on the CD train because I believed the lie that they provided better sound, which we vinyl addicts know isn’t true. And, for a short time, I loaded a bunch of songs on my phone.
In 2014, I pulled all of my records out of storage (about 800 of them), and set up a room dedicated to my albums. And ‘rediscovered’ the greatness of vinyl.
It was then that I started crate digging again.
© 2016 Chris Barry