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The Quietus Hour: John Doran's 45 45's, 45th Birthday Special
John Doran , June 30th, 2016 10:33

Platters from Harry Belafonte, David Byron, Clock DVA, Johnny Boy, Adriano Celentano, Willie Williams, The Ex, Electric Wizard, Mogwai, Malcolm Mclaren, Emiliana Torrini, Niney The Observer and many others abound

I'm not sure how I feel about 7" vinyl. But there again I'm not sure how I feel about being 45 years old either.

While Luke's away I've knocked together a couple of shows (part two next week) from a selection of 45 7" singles with the help of producer Seb White, and part one is just above.

The format wasn't my primary introduction to music (a cassette of the Flash OST by Queen and a flexi-disc of whale music came first) but it was essentially how I listened to music when I was a teenager. From 'Love Of The Common People' by Paul Young, 'It's Raining Men' by The Weather Girls and 'Pipes Of Peace' by Paul McCartney, it was clear early doors that a career as an international tastemaker awaited me. The 7" single suited my school age listening habits down to the ground. I would obsess over one song at a time and the repeat function of my Dansette allowed the continuous playback of one 45, sometimes all day long.

The sheen has faded from the physical objects for me though.

I still have boxes of them. Can't part with them. But the way I feel about these little square card envelopes that contain Tubeway Army's 'Are "Friends" Electric?' and Joy Division's 'Love Will Tear Us Apart' has obviously changed over the three decades or so that have elapsed. The audio has degraded. Some of them are more crackle, pop, scratch and hiss than actual tune. A WAV would sound better. Very few of the sleeves have weathered the decades well... I'm very much part of the modern age. I feel like a computer with 20,000 tracks on it doesn't really quite fulfil all of my listening needs, so how can a little box with 50 circles of black plastic in it?

While I have enough Turkish psych, ska, rare funk, Afrobeat (etc.) 7"s to fulfil the odd trendy DJ set should someone ask me, I'd sooner play music off a laptop or the more solidly built 12" vinyl to be brutally honest.

So I'm not sure how I feel about getting old but there again I'm not sure how I feel about my collection of 7" singles either. However I'm certain I'll still have them in boxes under my bed long after my last hard drive full of MP3 and WAVS corrupts and gets thrown in the bin.

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