The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

26 December 2003

All-time records

Rack, n. An instrument of torture; a cause of anguish or pain. (Webster's New Collegiate, 8th Edition)

I finished loading the Rack today.

The Rack is metal, and not especially attractive metal at that; it is six feet by four and a half, and it contains nine shelves, each of which holds about 130 12-inch phonograph records.

In its previous incarnation at the Hovel, the Rack was eight feet wide and contained eleven shelves, but there was no way to integrate it into the existing design scheme ("design scheme," he says) at that size, so it was cut down to fit a specific wall in the new house.

At its capacity of approximately 1170 LPs, the Rack now contains those records which are pop, as distinguished from classical; single-artist, as distinguished from various-artist compilations; and not soundtracks, original-cast recordings, or humongous box sets. They are arranged by artist, from Abba to Zombies. The arrangement was done by sleeve, so it is conceivable that some things which may have been mis-sleeved at some point are out of position, but this is not something I plan to worry about.

This task, incidentally, was almost completed last weekend, but when the Rack was loaded to two-thirds capacity, it listed dangerously to starboard, and I deemed it necessary to remove the contents, rework all the fasteners, and restart the process.

The filing system is not as intuitive as it could be — all the Mothers of Invention material, for instance, is shelved under Z for Zappa — but at least things are more or less findable when needed.

And the act taking up the greatest amount of shelf space? I think I'll save that for another time.

Meanwhile, I have to find storage options for the classical LPs (about 400), the show tunes (60 or 70), the compilations (a couple of hundred), and the 45s (a thousand or so).

Posted at 9:43 PM to Tongue and Groove


Mis-sleeved? HOW could that happen?

Posted by: wamprat at 11:06 PM on 26 December 2003

Having once left a CD in the freezer for about a month, I have to conclude that it's at least possible.

Posted by: CGHill at 5:15 AM on 27 December 2003

1170 LPs? Is that your retirement nest-egg, Charles? You don't actually play them, do you? Precious items like that?

Posted by: Francis W. Porretto at 6:10 AM on 27 December 2003

Now you need to set up a computer database that cross references them by artist, title, date of recording, date of release, record company, genre, songwriter, covers by other artists (if any), sleeve artist (where are all my Hipgnosis!), maximum chart position, etc...

Posted by: The Prop at 7:36 AM on 27 December 2003

These are not museum pieces: they get played. It may reduce their value to collector geeks by a tad, but I didn't start accumulating these things back in the Sixties just so I'd have something to sell for my old age. (Of course, back then, we hoped we died before we got old.)

I have a database for singles, which is really my primary interest, pop-wise; extending it to the album realm would probably take up what's left of my none-too-copious free time for the remainder of my days.

Posted by: CGHill at 9:33 AM on 27 December 2003

Had you sold that nest egg before moving I wouldn't still be seing the back doctor

Posted by: Bill at 11:11 AM on 27 December 2003