« On the periphery | Main | Holding on »

Letting go


"This or any other procedure is merely a dam against the spring tide of memories which surges toward any collector as he contemplates his possessions. Every passion borders on the chaotic, but the collector's passion borders on the chaos of memories. More than that: the chance, the fate, that suffuse the past before my eyes are conspicuously present in the accustomed confusion of these books. For what else is this collection but a disorder to which habit has accommodated itself to such an extent that it can appear as order? You have all heard of people whom the loss of their books has turned into invalids, or of those who in order to acquire them became criminals. These are the very areas in which any order is a balancing act of extreme precariousness." —Walter Benjamin, "Unpacking My Library: A Talk about Book Collecting"

I dynamited my dam yesterday. Anyone interested in a partial glimpse into the habituated disorder of some 20 years of my life may find traces of it — 3000 some such traces, in fact — creeping into the shelves of San Francisco's Amoeba records in the next few weeks. You might expect me to mourn, but I feel strangely invigorated. It's refreshing, releasing all those little beasties back into the wild.


The Misfits? Fuckin'A!!!

Actually, I ended up keeping that one. Purely for investment purposes, of course.

A Yars Revenge 12"? That's bizarre. What is that one?

i wondered if anyone would notice that! congratulations. it was some sort of soundtrack to the video game. unfortunately, REALLY bad. not even sample potential, as far as i could see. anyway, amoeba has it now.

Hope you didn't sell that 'Dummy', bet you don't want enemies this side of the Atlantic...

nope, everything on the shelves stayed with me. (and believe me, there are at least as many records as i sold still on the various shelves in this house.) so portishead and born against, pictured right above it, are both still here - and not just because they (sort of) rhyme.

For god's sake, man, post a list or something (not here obvs, but maybe in the downloads section?). Just the thought of all that promotional vinyl is making me drool like a mental patient. The idea of letting it molder away in some record shop in SF is more than I can bear. I, along with many others I'm sure, would love to be able to say, "This record? This record came from the collection of Philip (not Phil) Sherburne! ... He's a writer. For XLR8R, Slate, and Pitchfork. ... They're music magazines. Yes, I expect he has written for Rolling Stone."

Well, I'd be proud anyway.

three words to that last poster: get a life!

How pithy. Tell me, erik, do you often post inane comments-on-comments? Do you find it amusing to insult people you don't know?

You'll be thanking me if he posts that list, er[d]i[c]k.

Crap, now I've done it, too!

sorry, no list - half the records i sold i didn't even know existed, much less that i owned them. and i never got much promotional vinyl anyway; most of this was just the detritus of a long spell of collecting. impulse buys and completists' tics...

Weird...many an hour was wasted playing Yar's Revenge when I was, oh, 7 years old. I don't remember any soundtrack at all, just a constant vaguely unpleasant slowly pulsating hum, so I'm sort of curious to hear what would have been on it. Though, admittedly, probably not enough to dig through Amoeba to find it and pay money for it ;)

Congratulations...reducing the clutter and the burden is always a good thing. Plus that's X$ that you now have to...spend on more music, perhaps?

That Yar's Revenge song ("Fly, Yar Warriors") is quite strange. Kinda poppy with some electronic (vocoder) touches to make it all "video gamey". IIRC, there is also a song about Missile Command on the same disc. I have mp3s, if anyone is interested.
(Unless what I have is completely unrelated to that 12". That is a distinct possibility.)

I would've kept the Born Against as well.

Hey, nice piece in the Wire about yr vinyl sell-off, btw.

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)