In honor of Record Store Day tomorrow, I’ve interviewed Clay Hagblom of Geeking On Music which is a podcast started by both him and his wife where they geek out over music. What caught my eye about Clay’s work was his amazing collection of vinyl records, his passion and knowledge for music, and the crisp photographs he captures of his curated setup.
Tell us about yourself and your love music and vinyl records.
I love listening to, reading, and talking about music. I get excited discovering new music, be it old or new. Once I’ve been sucked into something new, I start digging for the context surrounding the music and how the artist was inspired. My wife (and podcasting partner) tells me this is a pretty geeky hobby, and so Geeking On Music was born. I always enjoy meeting so many other music lovers on Twitter and Instagram. It has become an amazing community of like-minded music lovers.
I’m a recent convert to vinyl, having grown up with crappy CD and Cassette players. It wasn’t until I started listening to my favorite albums on vinyl at a friend's house that I realized how much was missing in the music I’ve listened to my whole life. Jumping head first into record collecting has been so much fun because it’s like I’m discovering music all over again.
What does Record Store Day mean to you?
Personally, I’m not a huge collector for collecting sake, so I don’t usually spring for picture discs or special editions of albums I already own. There are so many great releases on Record Store Day that don’t fall into that category that I’m excited for and will be on the lookout to snatch up. It’s a great day to connect with other music lovers while we wait in line to see what goodies await. It’s Christmas Day for fans of vinyl.
What are some of the cool record store spots you like to visit in your town?
Salt Lake City has some great stores. My favorites are Randy’s Records, Diabolical, and Graywhale. I always find something that’s on my list, usually too many.
What was the first vinyl you ever purchased?
My first record was Dilla’s Donuts. It’s one of my all time favorite hip hop albums. It was followed a few days later by Neil Young’s “Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere.” After that, I started looking for gear to play it on. Luckily I have great friends that helped me avoid pitfalls while I was getting everything together. It’s a big reason I started doing our Nerdy Gear Talk podcast episodes. I know there are a lot of people like me that want to get into vinyl, but since they didn’t grow up with the technology, they have no idea where to start.
How have the Klipsch Heresy speakers changed the way you enjoy your records?
I decided to go with vintage tube amps right from the start, so I needed a high-efficiency speaker to match. The Heresy’s fit my set up correctly. They are so dreamy to listen to. They sound great at low levels and can be pushed as well. I can listen to decent volumes for hours and hours without any ear fatigue. They have truly changed how I listen to music.
It's early, but who has the best album of 2017 so far?
That depends on whether you consider Run The Jewels 3 a 2016 or 2017 album.
What are your top 5 albums of all time?
An impossible question that I can answer in 20 different ways, depending on my mood.
How will you celebrate the 10th anniversary of Record Store Day this Saturday?
Shopping for records until I feel guilty at how much money I’ve spent.
Tell us about your podcast and where to find you on social.
Geeking On Music is a podcast where we do just that; we geek out about music. The topics and formats vary. I did a three-hour massive podcast on Uncle Tupelo, the fathers of modern alt-country, that has been hugely popular. I’m currently working on another deep dive into Neil Young’s “Ditch Trilogy.” That’s one you will want to check out. In between these deep dives, which nearly kill me putting together, we do shorter episodes that range from gear talk, conversations with other music lovers about all sorts of topics, and keeping people up to date on the latest releases that I’ve been digging. It’s a blast to do.
We have a lot of fun on Twitter. I love posting photos of my music heroes and watching the ensuing discussion about them that follows. I also regularly post records from my collection on Instagram. Usually with some information about them or the reasons why, if you don’t have it in your collection, why you need to. Both accounts are @geekingonmusic, and you can find the podcast, also called Geeking On Music, on iTunes, Stitcher, www.geekingonmusic.com and anywhere else you listen to podcasts.
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