This is Home: Area record collectors

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Music collections that are seen as well as heard.

Vinyl album sales are expected to outpace CD sales for the first time in decades, though physical sales now represent a small fraction of the total market (Brian Tabick/KCRG)

Something that began to fade away in the 1980s, when vinyl LP's began to give way to tapes and compact discs-and, especially in the 2000s, when music came not from what is known as "physical media", but from computer downloads.

Still, the people helping to keep records alive are the ones who embraced them in their youth.

"I've been buying records for over 50 years; I'm recently retired, and now, I have the time to invest in my hobby, my passion," says local collector and seller Brian Worstell. "So now, I spend my days cleaning and readying vinyl records for record shows."
--Do you make a lot of money on this?
Worstell: No, not really. When you look at the time you put into it, it's more a labor of love. I like meeting people, and talking about the different artists and the different records I have for sale."

Worstell, from Marietta, is among local residents attending shows around the region and the country, several times a year.

But an organizer of a recent show in Parkersburg says those who have grown up in the digital age are intrigued as well.

"The record revolution doesn't just end with the 30-40-50 (year-old) crowd," says Aaron Whited, who organized the recent record collectors show in Parkersburg. "Those people are having kids, and those kids are grown up and growing up with this. Half of the people I buy and sell with are my age or even younger."

And perhaps more of an attraction than the records themselves, is the cover art and what's called "liner notes", explaining the artist and the music.

What's more, shows taking place a couple of times a year, aren't the only places to find vinyl.

"I go to brick and mortar stores," Worstell says. "I go to Goodwill and the Salvation Army. I'll pull over for a yard sale if I see a box of records in the driveway. Friends and family give me leads for people who want to sell records, or have a collection they want me to look at. They always turn up."

From the days when media went around to make a sound.