Enthusiasts peered through windows and formed long lines outside Sunday as vinyl fans surrounded a Nanaimo record fair to see what treasures awaited them.
“Absolutely. It’s like Christmas morning when you’re five years old,” said Jack Tieleman, co-promoter of the Nanaimo Record Fair & Show.
At 71, Ladysmith’s Glen Ryan has already collected some 10,000 records and travels the world now in pursuit of them.
“I started buying records when I was thirteen years old and when I buy a record now, I get the same charge I did as a kid,” said Ryan.
“This is something I’m really into. This is something I really love, and it is cool,” said Nanaimo resident and vinyl enthusiast Valentina Cardinalli.
All for an experience that, according to enthusiasts, feels like a trip back in time.
“It’s the crackle. The crackle, the memories. Oh yeah,” said Nanaimo resident Don Boyd.
“You hear every little detail, and also you’re hearing it how it would have been heard when it originally came out,” said Ladysmith resident and vinyl enthusiast Tyson Stone.
“We live and breathe this stuff. It is so important to us, and it does, it keeps us alive, it keeps us going, it’s life-sustaining, and it’s so much fun,” said Cardinalli.
According to the Wall Street Journal, it’s a trip back in time that many are in search of. In 2022, vinyl records outsold CDs for the first time since 1987. As an increasingly online world has more people seeking out humble beginnings and to hold something tangible.
“I have no idea what’s going to be here, and I’m super excited,” said Boyd.
“And as soon as I walk through the door, I can’t wait to set up my records so I can go and look,” said Ryan.
As a simpler time briefly returns, with the drop of a needle, the familiar crackle of a recording and a connection between people from every walk of life.