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Old and Not in the Way

Earlier today I posted about the upswing in the sale of old fashion vinyl records. Here’s another note that should make the older folks among us (including me) feel a bit better. The Dallas Observer reports that Nielsen Soundscan has found that for the first time that what are considered old records are selling more than new ones:

The first six months of the year saw sales of 76.6 million catalog records–industry-speak for albums released more than 18 months ago–compared to 73.9 million current albums.

That’s not to say that albums from Jefferson Airplane and Sam the Sham and the Pharoahs are flying off the shelves. It’s sort of a statistical thing. Older records are dropping more quickly in price, there is no new blockbuster and, as the quote indicates, some of the albums considered old actually are fairly recent. The death of Whitney Houston led to a spike in sales of her music as well.

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Duke Ellington brought class, sophistication and style to jazz which, until that point, was proudly unpolished and raucous. His story is profound. The author, Terry Teachout, also wrote "Pops," the acclaimed bio of Louis Armstrong. Click here or on the image.


What else is there to say? Here is the story behind every song written by The Beatles. Click here or on the image.


The Grateful Dead don't get enough credit for the profound nature of its lyrics. Many of the band's songs are driven by a deep and literate Americana ("I'm Uncle Sam/That's who I am/Been hidin' out/In a rock and roll band" and "Majordomo Billy Bojangles/Sit down and have a drink with me/What's this about Alabama/Keeps comin' back to me?").

David Dodd's exhaustive study tells the story, song by song. Click here or on the image.