In my childhood I listened to cassette tapes and recorded stuff onto them. My parents always bought the tape instead of the CD because it was cheaper. So I got introduced to the CD rather late. At some point I started transferring my cassette recordings to WAV files on the computer to back them up. (I did this with LPs too.) Eventually these got converted to MP3s which I'd then load on to my first cell phone, and now, smartphone. I didn't understand all those people who bought MP3s to listen to on their computer or phone. I thought that only the physical media was worth buying and then maybe I would make a digital copy of it for playback on a mobile device.

When I saw vinyl records being played at my grandparent's house as a child I perceived it as such an ancient and inferior technology. (Dad told me not to jump around too much otherwise the needle would skip; sure enough it did.) But as time went on I became interested in older technology and bought my first record around 2007. Never then did I imagine that my interest in records would actually enter the mainstream to the extent that new LPs are being sold in Barnes & Noble as of 2014. I am an audiophile fascinated with the possibilities, nuances, and differences in sound quality found among the different audio media, and enjoy using Audacity to manipulate and analyze audio.

When I go to a record shop I look out for items in these categories:
- Technical tests
- Stereo demonstrations
- Sound effects
- Electronics/science
- Computer programs/games on vinyl or tape
- Quadraphonic cassette tape (does it really exist?)
- Flexi-discs & other oddities

Favorite genres to listen to:
- Classical
- Oldies (1960s & '70s pop, rock, & folk)

Favorite artists (in order):
1) The Beatles
2) Simon & Garfunkel
3) Peter, Paul & Mary
4) Joan Baez
5) Pete Seeger

RARE ITEMS that I am looking for (not on Discogs, as of this writing):
The music: Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 6
The performers:
1) Arturo Toscanini conducting the NBC Symphony Orchestra, 1941 (or 1943?)
Based on the year I would assume that this was originally released on 78 RPM shellac and perhaps later reissued on LP (maybe even CD), but I have not come across clear evidence to support this. I discovered this recording on YouTube years ago (and thankfully downloaded it) but it was later deleted from YouTube. I don't remember the user who had uploaded it.
Note: This is distinct from the slightly more common recording they did in 1947 (see: Symphony No. 6, In B Minor, Op. 74 ("Pathétique")).

2) George Szell conducting the Cleveland Orchestra, live, 1969
As there is no evidence that Szell ever released a recording of Tchaikovsky's 6th, it is highly likely that this is a concert bootleg. Again, I discovered this on YouTube years ago and downloaded it, but it was later deleted from YouTube. Also I don't remember the user who had uploaded it.

The only way I can listen to these recordings now is via the MP3 files that I downloaded from YouTube at the time that they were available, but of course these have reduced fidelity. I have listened to these many times and the performances are absolutely astonishing. These particular performances are very valuable to me. I don't know where I can readily find the official releases, as virtually no information about them is available online (last I checked) so I am always on the lookout for them.

3) Any vinyl with Maryland Classic Youth Orchestra (or similar variations of the name) performing (typically 1960s & '70s)
Recent Activity
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This album appears to be a compilation of sound effects previously released on the Audio Fidelity label going back to 1960. Several clues suggest that it was created with less care and interest than those in the original AF run. The vinyl is not as ... See full review
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Audio Fidelity's lofty claims of a frequency response from 16 Hz to 25 kHz and a signal-to-noise ratio of over 65 dB are more than just numbers on the page. My ears are impressed at the quality not only of the production but equally of the pressing! I ... See full review
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Though I haven’t recently heard a concert of the UMD Chorale or Orchestra, this album indicates that they were solid ensembles circa 1970. I love Nelson’s Choral Fanfare that starts off the program. It’s an ear-catching introduction that (within only the ... See full review
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Having been a musician in youth orchestras of the Washington, DC metropolitan region and having personally known some instrumentalists in the DCYO, I picked up this album out of curiosity to get a sense of what the orchestra sounded like in 1969. (I ... See full review
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I used to listen to commercial classical radio station WGMS 103.5 FM before they shut down in 2005. (Anyone remember that cunning & witty announcer Dennis Owens?) Never seen or heard anything about the station since then, until I found this album in a ... See full review
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