For the record, vinyl is in

The classic ways of listening to music are coming back. Record Fair NL is topping the charts as the younger generations begin to experience the world of vinyl.

A mother and daughter pick through a crate or vinyl records.
Kim Coombs, left, and Kaitlyn Coombs pick through a box of records at the NL Record Fair on Sunday. Kaitlyn has been collecting for a few years, but her mom has listened to vinyl since she was a child. Abby Butler/Kicker

Abby Butler
Kicker News

In a society where streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music are the main players, people are now starting to close their apps and instead open a record player.

On Sunday, more than 1,200 people attended Record Fair NL at the St. John’s Farmers’ Market.

Music lovers flocked to the venue where they could find CDs, cassette tapes, vinyl records, and even some classic memorabilia.

Despite being the old way of listening to music, the fair was as much a hit for youth as it was for adults and seniors.

Kim Coombs attended the market with her 15-year-old daughter, Kaitlyn.

For as long as she can remember, Kim has been listening to records.

“I’ve listened to music from Tammy Wynette to George Jones to everything in between, forever, and I still do,” said Kim.

She says the experience of listening to a record instead of streamed music is one that allows you to connect with what you’re listening to.

“It feels more real than the music they play now. Everything is just so synthesized, whereas back then it was natural and real.”

Kim’s mother was a singer and passed down her love of music. Kim is also a singer, and has passed the love of music down to her own daughter.

Kaitlyn says her interest really started when the album Fine Line by Harry Styles was released on vinyl.

Since then, she has grown her own large collection of records.

“I just like the older vibe,” said Kaitlyn.

For many of the vendors, they too have been listening to records since they were young.

Calvin Blackmore and volunteers from VOWR stand amongst the boxes of records they are selling.

The 67-year-old was happy to talk records with anyone who came his way. His memories of vinyl spin from his early childhood.

“My brothers and my family listened to it,” said Blackmore. “So I grew up listening to LPs on a turntable way back.”

He has his own large collection and says he always thought records were “the thing.”

After five years of Record Fair NL, the crowds only grow bigger each year. 

Seeing kids today experience music the way he did when he was young, he says, is truly something special.

“It’s good to see a lot of younger people doing it,” said Blackmore. “It’s coming back, and you can tell by the number of people here today – it’s unreal.”

Abby Butler is a student journalist studying at the College of the North Atlantic. A lover of photography from a young age, she aims to tell her stories as much through photos as she does through writing.

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