The sort of perfect day when no self respecting camera should be left in its bag. Fully charged up we go out, to a feast of colour and record shops.
But then all visits to Granby these last five years and more have been social visits. Where our conversations with each other have created the future.
And don’t worry music fans, the Black Vinyl is coming later.
On Hardman Street There’s a little sign where the entrance to the Flying Pickett used to be. ‘Record Fair, here today’ it says. And so the Black Vinyl bit of today’s title begins. Today is National Record Store Day. So as you’ll see there’s a lot of looking through crates of LPs going on.
Also, there are always wonderful conversations going on around record stalls:
“I came to Liverpool for a party 30 years ago and I never went home.”
“Ah, The Temptations! They always make me feel like smoking.”
“That’s brilliant that one. Eddy Grant when he was in The Equals with dyed blond hair.” “Yes, Black Skinned Blue Eyed Boys (Ain’t Gonna Fight No War). D’you want it?” “Of course not, I haven’t got a record player!” “Well why are you looking through all these LPs then?” “I don’t know, I just like them.”
Good enough, just to like them. So do I.
Today my conversation is with my landscape architect friend Elaine Cresswell. We talk Homebaked, Gardening on the River Front, North Liverpool and all we’re both doing about the possible futures around us. Thank you Elaine!
They’re ostentatiously not joining in with Record Store Day. Reckoning, sensibly, that every day is special. So no hectic searching for ‘today only’ special releases in here. Merely a steady stream of enthusiasts knowing they’re in the right place. A record shop where they’re recognised. And the people behind the counter even know the kind of records they’ll be looking for. A gem.
It’s called ‘Concept Shopping.’ Basically a department store full of independents sharing a common till. There are all kinds of things on sale in here, but I can’t tell you what they are as I only have eyes for the vinyl over in the corner.
“Yellow Moon” by The Neville Brothers and Daniel Lanois if you’re interested. I meet another friend in here, Nina Edge. We talk Welsh Streets and the Digital Printing course she’s just been on up at DoES Liverpool.
And do you know what? I’m done. Record shopped out. So I don’t go in.
Gil Scott-Heron ‘The Bottle’ playing as I find a seat. Brilliant, genius music.
Sarah’s in town too and rings me while I’m in Leaf. We can’t talk though as the music’s on good and loud. So I walk down to meet her where she is.
Had them pretty much all the time I’ve been writing this blog though. Thousands of miles we must have walked together. Well done old boots.
What a place, what a day.
And first on the record player back home?