New York Dolls

Personality Crisis

New York Dolls – Personality Crisis

My local record store is a tiny cramped space, even if you’re the only customer in there. Today there were a couple of people in there when I arrived and more came when they left so it felt particularly tight. The guy who works there said there were several bins of records that they hadn’t had a chance to price yet, a big collection that they’d bought, but they were all for sale so feel free to dig through the milk crates.

While the owner does get in new records, re-issues as well as new releases, he mostly sells used stuff. New vinyl is generally too expensive for me so I stick to the used bins and hope that he has something different in stock. That new collection had some interesting records but most of them were in kind of iffy shape. Missing inner sleeves, worn out covers, some scratches on the vinyl. I passed on a number of albums that I might have thought about buying if they’d looked a little less worn out.

After flipping through seven or so dusty bins, in the last box of records, I found an original copy of the first New York Dolls album. The cover was coming apart at the seams, as was the inner sleeve, but the record itself was in good condition. Such a classic. My brother used to play it all the time when he was in high school. I think he probably still has his copy, and given how meticulous he has always been about his stuff, I’m sure it’s in excellent shape. I only have a tape that my brother made me with this album on one side and Lou Reed on the other. I decided it was worth taking a chance with this copy since I’ve never come across it (in recent years – oh if only someone would have told me to grab a bunch more records back in the day).

I paid a little more for it than I thought it was worth really, given the sorry state of the cover and sleeve, but the guy cleaned it for me and I brought it home and ordered everyone else in the house to sit still while I put the needle down. This song came screaming out through the speakers and I got a huge grin on my face. It sounded great. It looked great too, nice and flat. Not bad at all for a 42-year-old record.

Advertisements

Pills

New York Dolls – Pills (live)

I’m reading Love Goes to Buildings on Fire: Five Years in New York That Changed Music Forever and although I’m not old enough to have been aware of the music scene during those five years (I was 6-11 years old and we lived just outside New York City not in it), much of the book is familiar.

Thanks to my older brother exposing us to bands like the Ramones, the Velvet Underground (and solo Lou Reed), the New York Dolls, and my own memories of hazy, dirty, hot summers, and a city with huge crime and drug problems, I don’t have a hard time picturing the events he chronicles.