Anyone whose age is around the four-decade mark will remember their teenage years as revolving around vinyl albums. The artwork was cool, the sound stellar and the care that had to be taken with a treasured music collection was part of the ritual of growing up American.
The vinyl album gave way, first to cassettes, then to the smaller, sturdier compact disc; all of which now face obscurity as downloads and streaming become the preferred method of collecting music — much to the dismay of the music industry.
But vinyl is making a comeback.
And The Vinyl Music Vault, located at 300 Main St. in Oneonta, is full of vinyl records.
“We have over 50,000 albums and around 30,000 45s,” said Richard Strignano, co-owner of The Vinyl Music Vault. “More and more, you will see artists going back to vinyl. The sound quality is better. On a CD, you can really only get to 64 bits — even now. With vinyl, you can get a good depth of sound at both ends of the spectrum. Kids these days, they have been listening to downloaded music off of an iPod or phone. They hear a vinyl record and they can’t believe the quality of the sound of the music.”
In fact, the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry said in their 2013 annual report that the sales of vinyl albums hit their highest point that year since 1997.
Strignano said he became interested in the vinyl industry after retirement. As a part-time front-man who played acoustic guitar in a country music band, Strignano has been interested in music most of his life. When he retired from Amphenol, Strignano found he had too much time on his hands and wanted to find a job that he loved.
He went into business with Todd Breitmaier in 2013.