February 5, 2017
Because every record collection has a story.
Home Grown is our series profiling you lot and your excellent record collections. Taking our cue from the brilliant submissions to the #VFRecordCollections thread on Instagram, we want to share a little of your hard-earned love for vinyl with the world.
Each week, we’ll be profiling a different collector from around the world and finding out what makes them tick. Want in? Send us a pic of your collection and a few words about your collection to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Name: Barbie Bertisch
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Size of collection (approx.): Somewhere around 1,600, split somewhat evenly between 12″ and LPs.
How long have you been collecting for? Not a long time ago, really. I’ve always been into music and exposed myself to it either going out in Miami, where I lived for 8 years, or here in NY. I started buying seriously about 3 years ago and it’s grown extremely quickly.
When my partner and I moved in together, he brought with him about 2,500 records, but we keep our collections separate.
What part of your set-up are you most proud of?
I try not to buy for the sake of ‘owning’ something — if I bring a record home, it’s with the full intention of giving it the play it deserves whether at a club gig, The Lot Radio where we have our weekly show, or our Classic Album Sundays sessions. I think about 99% of them were played. If I don’t play it, I don’t feel like it’s right to keep it. I keep LPs on a different section from 12″s and know exactly where each record can be found. We make good use of IKEA shelving in our humble Brooklyn apartment.
Having one foot in the audiophile world and one in DJing, it’s tough to have the perfect setup at home. Different needs call for different gear. I’ve got a set of Technics 1200s (and another pair stored) with a small A&H mixer, but am in the market for something a bit more special like a Condesa, ARS or E&S. I also own a really beautiful Bang & Olufsen Beogram RX2 with all its original parts. Building out an audiophile home system requires space and heavy cash, but we get our hi-fi fix with our monthly Classic Album Sundays sessions where we pair a Rega P9, Klipsch La Scalas and subwoofers, and AudioNote amp and preamps. Best of both worlds!
What does your record collection mean to you?
I like to think one’s collection speaks to your own personal history, however eclectic that may be. Within mine, I try to represent all the stages in my musical make-up: childhood in Buenos Aires and Argentinian music, teenage years in Miami and getting into new wave, punk and rock, and moving to New York where I actively started seeking out music.
Even though it’s not great for organisation, I’m really happy that there is fluidity within these records when it comes to genre. I feel like the collection is a true representation of who I am: from ECM and Windham Hill to BBE and To Rack & Ruin. It’s a pretty accurate picture of my musical DNA and really look forward to seeing where it goes as it keeps growing.