Saturday, October 23, 2010

Are You A Record Hoarder?

Some of the records we are hoarding.

Are you a record hoarder? Record collecting can be addictive. You start out just buying a few albums from your youth at the local book and record store, but quickly you become tired of your limited selection. Since you never get rid of anything, your stacks just keep getting bigger and bigger as you buy more and more records, often taking chances on something you barely have heard of just because it's on vinyl. Record collecting is a passion, but it can become a sickness as your records dominate all of your available space, forcing your significant other to give you an ultimatum: "The records must go, or I will!"

Would any of you classify yourselves as a record hoarder? We are curious and would love to hear your plight.

Monday, October 18, 2010

DJ Feedback Forms From Back In The Day

DJ Feedback Form from the popular old school house music label, Cajual Records.

One interesting thing that we find while crate digging are DJ feedback forms. Back in the day, before the internet and the age of instant feedback, record labels like Ultra Records and Cajual Records had to send out DJ feedback forms with their releases in an attempt to get some feedback on underground dance music. Shown are a couple of examples of DJ feedback forms, one from the classic Chicago old school house music label, Cajual Records.

DJ Feedback Form from Ultra Records

Anybody have any interesting examples of these DJ feedback forms? These often come with the record collections that we buy. Any of you old school DJs out there ever fill one of these out? Out of curiosity we'd also like to know if anyone still uses these, or if the internet age has totally replaced these DJ feedback forms and made them another relic of the 1980's.


Here's another DJ Feedback form from the Netherlands based Black Hole Records, from 2003. Has anyone seen anything from 2008 or later?

DJ Feedback Form from Black Hole Records

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Crate Digging Alive and Well in Brooklyn

Are records getting a little too popular?, as this article from the New York Times seems to suggest? Big-box retailers like Best Buy, Walmart, and Urban Outfitters don't understand crate digging in the least. But the appearance of records in stores like these confirms that vinyl record sales are on the rise - even if they are a little cliche.

I would prefer to shop elsewhere. Record shows and fairs are examples of events where one can find rare records. I've been to only a few of them, but it's hard not to walk out with something. I would have liked to attend this recent record show in Brooklyn. In a city as diverse as Brooklyn, New York, one could only imagine what rare records may be unearthed! I am sure it would put any record shows I have seen in Wisconsin to shame in terms of the diversity and quality of the records. It's definitely on my bucket list to attend a few record shows in Brooklyn.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Drinking Beer and Mixing Records Doesn't Mix, Unless...

...Unless you have a beer holder nearby!

The idea of protecting my decks from sloppy beer drinking became known to me one night of amateur-hour scratching years ago. I got a little too vicious on the ones and twos and my slipmats got drenched with Leinenkugel's. The solution was a simple one; build a beer holder to assure my bottle was placed in a fool-proof, tip-proof slot! I had the scrap wood and tools, so I went to work with these beer holder plans. This is very easy to make, so I'm sharing em with my fellow sloppy DJs as requested by 'anonymous' below, here are the plans so now you too can build your own beer holder for your studio!

Note: These plans are specific for a standard 12 oz bottle of beer. To: Anonymous, you can modify these plans by getting a bigger hole saw that fit a 40 oz. they do make hole saws that big, they are just harder to find.

Basic Instructions:

Find some 1X4" wood boards roughly 2 feet in length (for mistakes). Cut two 1" pieces for extra support underneath. The holder itself is the same size as the shelf that holds the bottle, so you can use it as a template for the bottom shelf. Instead of putting holes on the bottom shelf (obviously) use that hole saw to cut-out cork board for coasters. The hole saw is the same size as the bottle, so you should also get a sanding dowel the same size, sand down the holes so the beer slides in easily. I used my drill to attach the round sanding dowel to it and spun it in the holes and in no time, the hole was large enough. After a little sandi
ng, and maybe paint, screw it in the wall or shelf near your decks and it's done!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Show Us Your Studio! One Lucky Winner Gets A Gift From Metrowax

Do you have a studio that's so awesome you just have to show it off? Metrowax Records wants to see it! Entries will be judged on appearance, functionality, and creativity, with bonus points given to studios dedicated purely to vinyl records. The photo clarity will play a part as well - if it's a bogus photo then it's hard to show it off to the world.

The deadline for entries has been extended to Monday November 8th, 2010. Send three pictures by e-mail to After gathering them, we'll post the top five studios, with prizes for the top three. Here's the breakdown of the prizes to be awarded as a gift certificate:

  1. 1st Place = $25
  2. 2nd Place = $10
  3. 3rd Place = $5
Honorable mention will go to the 4th and 5th place studios. We can't wait to see these!

We'd like to thank Rchecka for submitting pictures of his studio. He is exempt from this competition, but he does set the bar pretty high. The beer holder is definitely a nice touch, though fans of the 40 oz. are out of luck.

Here's another sweet studio setup I found on the back of a record cover from the late 1980's. Nobody would ever guess which record this is. But I will drop a hint: It's from our home state, Wisconsin!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Taking Good Care of Your Record Albums

Too often, records are tossed away, wrecked by poor storage or any number of natural disasters. Records that are in excellent shape sell for more money, and they play a lot better than records in poor shape. That should be motivation enough to keep what you have in the best possible condition. Here's a short list of tips for record preservation. Follow these guidelines and enjoy your records for years to come!

  1. Keep your records away from heat and sunlight. Your records will easily become warped if left in a hot automobile in the summertime. The records will become more pliable and will warp quickly. This can literally occur in minutes and is impossible to repair. We get more than a few records that have been warped from excessive exposure to heat or sunlight.
  2. Keep your records and needle clean and free of dust and debris. This helps in maintaining the usability of the record for a long period of time.
  3. Keep your records in their dust jackets when not in use. This one should be obvious, but I still have friends that stack CD's like poker chips. I would assume a few of you do the same with records. Storing your records without cases will quickly result in deep scratches.
  4. Store your records vertically, on a durable shelf with backing. Storing records horizontally can lead to the record warping. The tremendous weight of the records on top will inevitably deform the records at the bottom; it's only a matter of time. Records can be stored vertically in boxes, but only if they are packed tight and stacked no more than four or five high.
  5. Keep your records away from excessive humidity, dampness and water. Don't store your records in a floodplain. If you store records in the basement of your house, it could be helpful to run a dehumidifier. If your records are exposed to open water, the covers will draw the water up like a wick, permanently damaging the cover. As soon as water has infiltrated your collection, you should get busy quickly to save what you can. All records must be removed from their cases and dried if they are wet; this will at least save the vinyl for the most part. If water soaked records are left, the paper jacket will eventually stick to the record itself, ruining both the cover and the record. Dampness left unchecked could leave your records moldy and the covers wavy and permanently damaged. Not good. One reason our warehouse is three stories high!

If you have any other suggestions related to storing and preserving record albums, we'd like to hear them! To get a better idea about how we explain some of the damage that records can have, please visit our record grading page.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Record Quotations

Our Current Quote: Taken From DJ Shadow - Right Time (Z-Trip 'Set the Party Off In 3 Parts Remix)

See this quote on the homepage.
The Metrowax crew really loves records. A lot. So naturally it goes without saying that we love hearing lyrics written by an artist who understands this passion, and sings or raps about how cool records are. Occasionally we post those lyric quotes on our website in the upper-right hoping our diggers will also enjoy the quote. We'd like to change that quote every month, but you really have to listen to a lot of records attentively to catch these few and far in-between quotables.

Maybe our readers can help us flip our front page quote more frequently.

We are looking for short, (preferably under 16 words) witty quotes from any artist of any genre, proclaiming their appreciation of records. Any help from your collective comments will be greatly appreciated!

So think back to one of the coolest quotes about records that you have ever heard, and share it with us here by commenting.

Thanks in advance,
rchecka and the rest of the Metrowax Team.