- Mar 2 2021Introducing Steve Kouta, a vinyl enthusiast, collector and Record Store Day Ambassador. He's got some gems!
Check Out Steve Kouta's Vinyl Collection
Check Out Steve Kouta's Vinyl Collection
What is it that is still so fascinating about listening to music on vinyl? Is it the ritual of flipping through the collection, pulling out an old fave, sliding it out of the sleeve and dropping the needle?
It's all of that! Record collecting is a hobby for some and an obsession for others.
We stumbled across Record Store Day Ambassador and vinyl enthusiast Steve Kouta on Instagram and have been hugely impressed by his vinyl collection and knowledge of classic albums, so we sat down with him for a chat about all things vinyl! Stay tuned for some videos from Steve talking us through some great records over the coming weeks.
How long have you been collecting?
Around 20 years (give or take).
How many records do you own?
It's hard to pinpoint the exact amount, but I'd say somewhere between 4500 - 5000.
What has fuelled your passion for vinyl?
I've always been obsessed with vinyl from a young age. My parents had a pretty solid record collection which initially sparked my interest, and after inheriting these, my collection has grown from here. I love the whole ritual of playing records - I'll never get sick of it.
What gear do you listen on?
My speakers are KEF R100s, my turntable is 'The Classic' by ProJect, and my amp is a Yamaha R-N602.
If your house was on fire and you could only save 5 records, what would they be?
Only 5? Wow, that's hard. OK, here goes:
1 - Bluesbreakers with Eric Clapton
2 - Led Zeppelin II
3 - Prince - 1999
4 - Lauryn Hill - The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill
5 - Leonard Cohen - New Skin for the Old Ceremony
What we also love about Steve is the care and attention to detail in his Instagram posts, his channel is a work of art in itself thanks to some beautiful photography and well-thought-out placements of his records. we're not the only ones impressed. Steve has racked up an impressive 65,000 followers who all add their own commentary on his fine music selections.
Take a look at a small selection of his Instagram posts below, and make sure you follow his account here. (It's @stevekouta).
Now spinning: David Bowie, Low (1977). So glad to get my hands on this... The new reissue is the first time the album's been pressed on wax in over 25 years! Low marked a massive shift in style and tone for Bowie, and became the first of his 'Berlin Trilogy' - a series of 3 albums (Low, Heroes, and Lodger) recorded after he moved to West Berlin following a period of drug addiction and instability. The 3 albums were a collaboration with Brian Eno, and you can really hear his influence on the music, particularly on the second half of each record - there's a healthy dose of ambient goodness that only Eno can pull off. My only complaint with Low is that it doesn't last long enough! Just as you begin to fall into a meditative trance on the second side, the record finishes. All good things must come to an end I guess... I regard this period to be the most daring, innovative, and creative of Bowie's long and illustrious career. Low, along with Heroes and Lodger all received the 180g reissue treatment, and are out from today.
40 years ago today, a skinny, unknown 20-year old kid with a 'fro called Prince released his debut album 'For You'. Prince was always an ambitious artist, and he made this clear from the get go - playing all 27 instruments on the album, in addition to producing, arranging, and composing the entire record. Whilst this album is often overlooked when analysing Prince's enormous output, I think it's definitely worth a closer look just to hear snippets of the genius which would follow for the next 4 decades. I've heard this album hundreds of times, but it was only recently that I heard it through a decent pair of headphones. You can really hear the intricacies of Prince's one man band (his falsetto, the bass slaps, the guitar strumming, and the synths which would serve as a precursor to his Minneapolis Sound). Stand out tracks are For You, Soft And Wet, Just As Long As We're Together, My Love Is Forever, and Crazy You. Always enjoy giving this one a spin...
How do I store my records? I can't recommend the Blake record sleeves from @dutch_vinyl enough. Unlike the regular cloudy and dusty sleeves, Blake record sleeves are made from a thin crystal clear plastic film and they really make the cover art sparkle. The regular size fits snugly over most records, and there's also a 7" size, and a larger size for slightly wider double or triple albums. All sleeves come with a resealable flap and adhesive strip to protect records from dust and grime. Check out the link in my bio for more info, and swipe ???????? for more pics. They really do make the artwork shine, I hope the pics do them justice...
Realised on this day in 1965: The Beatles, Rubber Soul. What I like about this album is, much like their previous album 'Help!', it showcases the group's further evolution into a mature, serious band - not just a group of 4 guys from England who made short, catchy pop songs (of which they did very well). Musically, the lads explore a mixed-bag of styles: folk, rock, psychedelia, and soul. It was a critical and commercial success upon release, becoming an influential body of work, serving as Brian Wilson's inspiration to create Pet Sounds. Highlights for me include 'Girl' (probably Lennon's deepest love song up until that point), Nowhere Man (I really love this song), In My Life (a beautiful retrospective ballad about Lennon's childhood), and Norwegian Wood (a beautifully crafted song that even after all this time, doesn't seem to age.
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