Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Ten years of The Vinyl Word

It's ten years to the day since the birth of The Vinyl Word. In those ten years there have been over 1,000 entries, over 900 published comments and the blog has received 1.3 million page views. The original idea was that it would be devoted to roots music, including soul, blues, rock and roll, fifties and sixties pop and early reggae, reflect my love of vinyl records and chronicle events of interest to people with similar interests. Thus there have been many items covering the deaths of musicians over the years, reviews of gigs and music festivals, items on vinyl that I've bought at car boot sales, charity shops and record fairs and reminiscences about events that happened when I was a lot younger than I am now. I hope that I've kept readers entertained and informed over the years.
The very first entry, on January 20, 2006, came the day after the death of Wilson Pickett and shortly
after the death of Lou Rawls. I speculated in one of my first entries on who would become the 'last soul man', to quote Bobby Womack's 1987 album title, and listed some of the contenders who were still alive at that time. One by one many of them have died in the intervening years, including James Brown and King Floyd in 2006, Luther Ingram and Freddie Scott in 2007, Bill Coday, Isaac Hayes and Levi Stubbs in 2008, Eddie Bo and Michael Jackson in 2009, Solomon Burke, General Norman Johnson, Willie Mitchell and Teddy Pendergrass in 2010, J Blackfoot, Nick Ashford, Loleatta Holloway and Howard Tate in 2011, Fontella Bass, Etta James and Donna Summer in 2012, Bobby Bland and Cecil Womack in 2013, James Govan and Bobby Womack in 2014, and Don Covay, Ben E King, Percy Sledge and Mel Waiters in 2015. So far in 2016 we've already lost Otis Clay. Many of the original rock and roll and blues stars have also passed on during this time,
notably Bo Diddley, Ike Turner and B B King, but Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard, Chuck Berry and Fats Domino are still around even if not performing in some cases. Long may they last.
I try to get to as many music gigs as I can, although since I moved to the country six years ago this has become more irregular. I also go to music festivals when possible, especially the wonderful Ponderosa Stomp in New Orleans and the unique and brilliant Porretta Soul Festival in Italy. On occasions I've also been to UK festivals such as Rhythm Riot and Hemsby, Northern soul nights in Cleethorpes and elsewhere, US festivals like Viva Las Vegas, the King Biscuit Festival, New Orleans Jazzfest and the Blues and Barbecue Festival and the Doowop show in Long Island, as well as European rock and roll festivals such as Screamin' and the Rockin' Race.
I spend a lot of my time searching for original vinyl records and get up early to hunt through stuff at car boot sales, occasionally striking lucky and gradually filling in gaps in my collection and selling on Ebay the records that don't meet my criteria.
The great thing about a blog is that every word that has appeared over the years is available at the touch of a button, either by clicking on the month list on the right or by topic in the box at the top left hand corner. So, unlike Facebook and other social media, where the shelf life of entries is usually a few days, the Vinyl Word is a record of what's happened over the years, and a great substitute for a diary. I hope readers will click back to January, 2006, and check out my Inaugural Word, as well as other items from the very beginning. Recently I have been privileged to include items on the blog from music experts such as Seamus McGarvey and Noah Schaffer and I look forward to including more in the future. There are all too few media outlets for the music that I, and thousands of other love, so if The Vinyl Word can help to fill a gap I am more than happy.
Hopefully the blog will continue for many more years to come providing an information source as well as an outlet for my personal views. Comments are always welcome and I wish more people would express their views whether they agree or disagree with something I've said, or if they want to raise an issue. In the meantime, I will raise a glass to The Vinyl Word. Here's to the next ten years.
Nick Cobban


At 1:26 pm , Blogger Lex Jansen said...

Nick, thanks for your blog. Keep going!

At 9:21 pm , Blogger Nick said...

Thanks for your support. I will keep going as long as I can!

At 2:25 am , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your tenth anniversary.........keep 'em coming.


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