There are a few stories around at the moment about the growth in the sales of vinyl records. This is often contrasted
With the drop in sales of CDs (and also broader music sales problems). Here’s an example of these stories.
I’ve written a bit on this in the past. It was an early piece, but I tried to suggest that we might need to think about the way that our relations with our music collections are changed as they shift from material objects that we can hold and put on display to virtual objects on a hard drive. Walter Benjamin in his essay ‘unpacking library’ , written in the 1930s, suggested that the material objects we surround ourselves with matter. He suggests that it is not what is written in books, for example, that matters. It is the actual book (or record) that we have a connection and shared history and which we can use to display and access our biographies. It would seem that with vinyl sales increasing that the material object still matters to some, even against a backdrop of advancing technologies. Perhaps Benjamin was right and these cultural objects still play a part in the formation and display of identity and biography.