What Brexit Means To Record Collectors

EU referendum
Two confused record collectors discussing the impact of Brexit on Record Prices

 

In a little over 5 weeks, record collectors across the country will be going to the polls to decide whether the UK stays inside the EU or goes it alone. It is a momentous decision, and one which I urge every record collector to think very carefully about. However, it strikes me that there has been very little coverage in the press about what effects a Brexit might have on the free movement of vinyl, so how can record collectors across the country make the right decision?

Well, worry no more!!  Help is at hand with my guide to cut through the scream of back ground noise and get to the sweet melodies of useful and relevant information. Lets start with the question on every record collectors lips:

Will I still Be Able To Import Music From Abroad?

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One of the central planks of the EU is that record collectors can buy music freely, so if you want to import an album from the Romanian band above, then you are free to do so. However, if the UK were to leave, would you still be able to import the same album, or would there be restrictions, such as how long you could keep the record in the UK for or if you imported the album, could you also import the singles from that album etc. It’s all very confusing, but I think all record collectors would agree that it is best to be able to enjoy the multi-culturism that music from different countries brings.

So, if you want to continue to enjoy the freedom to enjoy whatever your musical taste is and from where ever it may come from, you’re probably going to vote to stay in.

Will The UK Still Be Able To Take Part In The Eurovision Song Contest?

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The quick answer has got to be, unfortunately, YES! After all, if Australia can take part, there are obviously not many geographic restrictions in place. Now, I’m the first one to support diversity (not the dance troop), but I draw the line at Moldova’s 2005 entry from Zdob si Zdub called Grandmama Beats The Drum. The point to consider for all record collectors is that just because we leave the EU does not mean we can escape the horror of the Eurovision Song Contest every year. Now, if any of the “Leave” spokes people had made a firm commitment that the UK would never have to endure another Eurovision Song Contest, then I think they would sweep up the vast majority of record collectors – and most of the rest of the population too.

I just have to mention Guy Sebastian, who represented that well known European country Australia this year, one more time! In Australia, 4.2m people watched the show (a record coincidentally), and in particular they must have marveled at his pyrotechnic piano. I grudgingly concede it bought something new to the show (very grudgingly!)

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I know that out there, amongst the many different shades of record collectors, there are one or two who actually specialise in Eurovision vinyl, and as much as it is not for me, everyone should be able to make their own choice.

If We Stay In The EU and New Countries Join, Will Record Prices Increase Due To More Collectors?

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According to the leaflet that just popped through my letterbox, excitingly called “The 2016 EU Referendum Voting Guide”, there are currently 28 members of the EU, with 5 more countries waiting to join, including Turkey (that’s important for some reason – didn’t they win the Eurovision in 2003?) Now, it seems logical to me that if we leave the EU, then the in-flow of record collectors to the UK could be controlled, and conversely, if we stay in the EU, and 5 more countries join the EU over the next few years, then there is the potential for more record collectors to come to the UK. Is this a bad thing?

The thing about record collectors is that they have open minds and the chance to talk to interesting record collectors from new countries excites them. There isn’t a record collector in the country who would not give his tatty old anorak or his last egg sandwich to a fellow record collector who has fallen on hard times. Furthermore, look at some of the positives. If new and interesting record collectors start coming to the UK, we could see rare record inflation, which means the values of our own collections will rise faster than an Arsenal season ticket. And, there’s the opportunity to nip over to all these lovely European countries and find rare and valuable releases at bargain prices, and we can bring them back without fear of being stopped at customs and having a nasty tax added.

So, from where I am standing, record collectors have nothing to fear from the UK staying in the EU, but in fairness, we probably won’t notice anything different if we leave either. Now, where can I get a copy of Grandmama Beats The Drum?

If you are interested in selling any of your unwanted vinyl, please get in touch. I promise not to judge you on your likely referendum voting intentions!! I also want to say thank you to all the people who have contacted me recently with details of their records for sale. There are some fantastic collections out there and I will get round to see them all. Thanks again!!

 

Record Collecting and The EU Referendum

No, this is not the name of my new band, although it does have a certain ring to it. But, with the EU referendum a mere 7 weeks away, I thought I ought to raise the important question that no-one has yet asked. Namely, what impact will Brexit have on the free movement of vinyl across Europe?

But, before I talk about that, I wanted to talk about a great little record collection I came across recently from a really nice guy who was about to go travelling and wanted to clear his flat of all unwanted/unneeded items, presumably so he could rent it our. When I arrived, the place had furniture all over the place, and boxes half packed, but amongst this mayhem, I found 30 or so records of pure quality. It was clear that this guy loved his vinyl, had looked after it carefully, and more importantly, he had great taste!

Now, none of his records were mega-rare, but they were an interesting collection, which presumably gives an insight into how his taste had changed over the last 10 years. For example, there was a lovely copy of the Arctic Monkeys At The Apollo box set which really caught the eye, released in 2008, and captured some of their live shows from 2006. There were only 5,000 of these produced, so quite rare.

Arctic Monkeys

As time went by, so his taste evolved a little, with a really nice copy of The XX’s debut album XX which was in lovely condition. I’m guessing this was from around 2009, and what made this especially nice was the fact that the original poster was still neatly folded inside the sleeve. So, he’s still into his indie stuff at this point, but then something started to change, and his musical taste changed to. I am left wondering if he had left university and moved to London to work, maybe starting to find new musical influences. Or had he met the love of his life. I’m not sure, but his music was moving!

The XX

To demonstrate this subtle change in his musical taste, I came across an album by an Australian band called Bag Raider ( had he been travelling after finishing his degree and heard this band while down under?). It is not guitar indie, but much more electronic dance music, so a major change from just a year before. And it continues in this direction with the brilliant Gorillaz album Plastic Beach, which whilst having the guiding hand of Britpop darling Damon Albarn, is undoubtedly a stunning album of electronic dance music.

 

I’m not sure what happened between 2010 and 2013, but by 2013, he was getting into some really new territory, and I offer the double coloured vinyl release of Cut/Copy’s Free Your Mind as evidence of this. As one reviewer said of this album:

Every Cut Copy album has it’s own feel to it. This album in particular though is very hard to pin. It combines New Wave/Synth Pop with Electro/Dance. I love the feel it provides the listener. 100% playable 200% all-around! 10/5!”

CutCopy

Who can tell what was happening in my record sellers mind, but he had graduated through indie to dance and beyond. The funny thing is, this is the last album that he had bought, or at least was in the collection. I wondered why he had stopped. Was it because he was now streaming his music or could it have been the beginning of the desire to go travelling again? Had the lure of the bright lights which had provided so much hope and opportunity just a few short years ago dimmed, and his thoughts turned to packing in his job, selling all the possessions that reminded him of his past, that reminded him of the dull 9-5 routine, the tortuous commute to the digital centre of London, and heading off to far off distant shores where he could relax and find a new direction?

I will probably never know, but whatever his reasons, he was a really nice guy and I just loved his small but beautifully formed record collection. I hope that he enjoys his travels and finds what he is looking for.

If you are interested in selling any of your unwanted vinyl, please get in touch. I promise not to over-analyse why you are selling!! I also want to say thank you to all the people who have contacted me recently with details of their records for sale. There are some fantastic collections out there and I will get round to see them all. Thanks again!!