Vinyl records thrive in times of pandemic; online record stores now available

MANILA, Philippines –– The musical medium of vinyl was almost forgotten when more portable formats arrived.

The advent of compact discs (CDs), cassettes and MP3 players has made the music experience for people more convenient.

Nonetheless, previously discontinued vinyl records have recently resurfaced on the music scene.

With the rediscovery of vinyl records in the digital age, one might wonder: what is the point of collecting records when people can just consume music digitally, a much cheaper music format?

For Bobby Banaag, owner of vinyl heaven Plaka Planet, people still collect records for several reasons.

Since the vinyl record craze picked up again, Plaka Planet, a Banaag passion project, started in 2017.

“You feel better when you interact with the medium. It’s something physical – it’s something you hold, something you can read on kasi hawak mo ‘yung plaka eh, then you interact with it – you put it on a turntable, you play it, ” Banaag explained.

“From a sound point of view, it’s the sound of vinyl. You would really hear the whole spectrum, the whole range of sounds coming from the vinyl. ‘Yung nga’ yung description ng mga tao –– it’s like being there, ”he added.

Banaag, who also grew up listening to vinyl records, said it’s the charm that motivates people to keep using the music medium.

“Some people, especially those who grew up with it, miss the sound of vinyl, with the crackles and pops. They miss the sound of imperfection a lot, ”he said.

One thing he also noticed is that the demand for vinyl records has increased amid the pandemic. He thought that since people were forced to stay at home, they had to indulge in a hobby.

“The demand was already high before the pandemic, but after a few months of the pandemic it started to pick up again, in particular” a young demand for the system itself – turntables, amplifiers, speakers “.

Given the health crisis we find ourselves in, Filipinos still have no choice but to stay at home so as not to contract the virus.

Fortunately, vinyl record stores have adapted to the new standard as well, as people can now virtually “dig” for the records they want.

Besides Banaag’s “Plaka Planet”, which has a physical store in Makati City and a virtual store on both Facebook and Instagram, here are some other stores where people can buy their records online:

For brand new and sealed:

The Gray Market https://www.instagram.com/thegreymarketrecords/

Plaka Express https://www.instagram.com/plakaexpress/

Plaka.MNL https://www.instagram.com/plaka.mnl/

Backspacer Records https://www.instagram.com/backspacerrecords/

Markarvin Records https://www.instagram.com/markarvinrecords/

Anthology https://www.instagram.com/anthology.ilo/

Unlimited vinyl https://www.instagram.com/vinylunlmtd/

Pinhole records https://www.instagram.com/spindlecommunitystore/

Daily analog recordings https://www.instagram.com/analogdailyrecords/

Acetate Music https://www.instagram.com/acetatemusic/

Vinyl record bar https://www.instagram.com/vinylrecordbar/

For the occasion and the occasion:

Loud neighbors https://www.instagram.com/noisyneighbour.records/

Spin this plate https://www.instagram.com/spinthatplaka/

Milf Crate Records https://www.instagram.com/milfcraterecords/

Good Morning Records https://www.instagram.com/goodmorningrecords/

For registrations with other goods:

Kape in Plaka https://www.instagram.com/kape.plaka/

Banayad Records https://www.instagram.com/banayadrecords/

Champagne Records https://www.instagram.com/champagne.records/

For records and turntables:

Ben and Bart https://www.instagram.com/benandbart/

Villaluna Vintagehttps: //www.instagram.com/vintagedotph/

The Vinyl Lab Records https://www.instagram.com/thevinyllabrecords/

Modern Himig phonographs https://www.instagram.com/himigngplaka/

Old Souls https://www.instagram.com/oldsouls.retro/

Old Soul Vinyl Records https://www.instagram.com/oldsoulvinyl/

For those considering launching their vinyl collection, Banaag advised that the first major investment is having a decent sound system.

“It’s good to start with a basic setup, a basic starter kit. And as you expand your tastes, your collection, you can always upgrade your system one by one.

There are also Facebook groups where people can join to sell and trade not only their records, but turntables as well.

As Banaag recommended, “seek the best possible price, both for the system and for the vinyl”.


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About Renee Williams

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