And Now For My First Post…Records…real records…33s, 45s, 78s

Yep, really new to this. Ok, I thought it would be fun to start a line about the things I like, and see if others like them too. My name’s Chris, but sometimes I go by Mack. Mack is sort of me with a twist. Kinda the guy I wish I could be all the time, but have to put on the mask to get by in life today. Mack is kinda out there. Mack is not retro. He just seems that way to people around him. Mack plays jazz and blues sax, dresses in bowling shirts with exotic women on them or sharkskin suits and fedoras, drives a ’53 Chevy, and has strippers for friends. He drinks decent Scotch every chance he gets. He soaks his sax reeds in Scotch. He lives under the palm trees and has a kick-ass woman with a body that makes Jane Mansfield look like Olive Oyle. That’s Mack, and I’m going to stop referring to him in the 3rd person now.

Groovy. Ok, so for my first post, which will probably only get  read by a handful of people, I’d like to talk about one of my favorite “old” things. Records. No, I don’t mean CDs, or MP3s, I mean honest-to-God records, ones made of vinyl or hard rubber, played on a record player or phonograph at 33, 45 or 78 RPM.

Star Dust, by Artie Shaw. My First Big Band Record.
Star Dust, by Artie Shaw. My First Big Band Record.

I got my first records when I was just a kid, like reeeealy little, maybe 2 or 3. Kids stuff, Porpie the Porpoise, Snoopy and the Red Baron. I got my first real records when I was a little older, around 9 or 10. That was back in the late ’70s. My aunt bought me the disco version of Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Oh, brother. Then I somehow got Boogie Oggie Oggie on a 45. Yeah. So then when I was around 11 or 12, my grandfather gave me a stack of old 45’s. The top one was a Glen Miller job with String of Peals and St. Louis Blues. The second was Artie Shaw’s Star Dust and Dancing in the Dark. That was my first real encounter (other than movies and cartoons) with anything remotely resembling jazz, and I was hooked. It was that version of Star Dust that made me want to play a horn, trumpet at first then clarinet, and the Miller songs got me into the sax. I learned to swing before I learned to spell decently. I was playing clarinet by 13 and sax by 14…and I taught my self by playing along with those old records, listening, memorizing, figuring out the notes and playing them back. I still have all my old records, including those first two from my grandfather…and now and then I still play along with  them, just for the hell of it.

Let’s hear some of your stories…

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5 Replies to “And Now For My First Post…Records…real records…33s, 45s, 78s

  1. My first record was a 78 of Chattanooga Choo Choo by Glen Miller. I think I sat on it and broke it when I was a kid. Now i have about 6 different versions of it on MP3. How the world changes.

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