Music – Re-cycling – The Ocean –

So many good things in one object!

By Bernie Bell

When I was a young person, there were two options for listening to music at home – the radio ( or ‘wireless’!), and vinyl records.  Singles, usually with one ‘A’ side and one ‘B’ side.  Bigger ones, known as LP’s ( long players) and smaller ones, known as EP’s (extended players) – seems like the wrong way round, but that was what they were called.

The radio presented some groovy music, though you needed to twiddle the knobs a bit to find it!  As in Van Morrison’s song ‘In The Days Before Rock And Roll’….

And then, along came Radio Caroline and the other ’Pirate’ radio stations.

A mixed blessing – they meant that the Fat-cats of the music business didn’t have control over what we heard, but…..some of what we heard, was some rare old tripe! Some – wasn’t – and the ‘Pirates’ opened up popular music to the population – including those who maybe could ill afford to buy records.

We used to save up to buy vinyl records – I don’t remember what the first record I bought was.  I didn’t buy singles, as, well, quite a bit of money for a young person, for just one song. I’d save up and buy an album. I remember buying Led Zeppelin, Cream,  Emerson Lake and Palmer  – on a softer note – Al Stewart’s ‘Love Chronicles’ – that was definitely one of the first that I bought.

Time moved on,  vinyl went out of fashion as CD’s had a lot of advantages – they were less easy to damage, easier to carry around with you. Though – it used to be a ‘tribal’ signal – which records you were seen with, tucked under your arm at the bus stop!

My old mate Martin, set up a second hand record store, about 40 years ago –  Terminal Records, in Haverfordwest, Wales.

At first, he was thriving – then vinyl went out, then cd’s went out, and music was mostly accessed by downloading. Mart Feared that he might go out of business, but he persevered , and now – the young ones can’t get enough of vinyl. They enjoy the art work on the sleeves, the feel of handling the record, the clearer sound produced.

And now, after all that preamble, I’ll get to the subject of this article, as mentioned in the title.  I was watching ‘Later with Jools Holland’, and there was an item about a vinyl record which has been produced, made from plastic found on beaches around the Cornish coast!  What a brilliant idea, and a brilliant combination – music – re-cycling – the ocean – and, for that matter, Cornwall – a place which rivals Orkney in my affections.

Nick Mulvey wrote and recorded a piece of music, to work with the concept of this piece of …re-cycling.  Here’s an article about the record, and the ideas behind it……….

‘Nuff said.

vinyl records LPs


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