When I turned sixteen, I finally broke down and got a job, like my Mom wanted.
She’d been pestering me for so long that it never occurred to me what I'd do with the money once I made it. If she'd have thought of the music angle I would have dropped out of kindergarten.
At the time, my brother and I had, at most, 40 albums, so getting a new one every couple of weeks would be. Just. Awesome. (In the pre 21st century - and as such, undiluted - version of the word. And I'm a prime diluter - nowadays I'll call a halfway cold beer awesome.)
I could more or less buy whatever records I wanted so long as I didn’t go off the deep end. I didn’t want another comic purge.
But which ones did I want? It was getting harder to find out.
When you bought a single you knew exactly what you were getting. With an LP who really knew? How to find out?
Should I have counted on friends to point me to certain bands? I guess so, if I ended up liking the music. And that if was getting bigger all the time because everyone was breaking up into their own different musical tribes (Led Zeppelin, Allman Brothers, 70s Soul, etc.) and it didn’t look like we’d all be reuniting any time soon.
Next: Frying, Fires, or Good-Bye Mom, Hello Robert Christgau