Album Addict is what Steve Belcher calls his booth full of vinyl albums at Cedar Chest Antiques in downtown Lake Charles. He thinks he has 5,000 to 6,000 albums for sale at the moment.
So far, Album Addict has mainly been selling vinyl from the 1970s through the ‘90s. Belcher calls “classic rock” the “sweet spot” of the store’s collection. Big sellers have included such acts as Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen and the Allman Brothers.
“People buy Beatles albums by the armful,” says Belcher. He devoted January to a month-long Beatles vinyl sale. He’d already sold two full Beatles catalogues before his January sale and had two more on hand ready to go. He’ll have a similar Rolling Stones promotion in February.
With consumers able to buy a pristine vintage album by the Beatles (or other old school acts) for $14, Belcher thinks he can offer a high quality music product at an attractive price.
His stock isn’t all one flavor. He says the store has a little bit of everything, including contemporary rap. He just bought a collection of jazz albums. And he’s also acquired “2,000 mint condition classical albums” with “no scratches, no ring wear.” These will be priced at $3 each.
There are also t-shirts; several hundred CDs; and vintage posters, mainly from the ‘60s and ‘70s. The vinyl in the bargain bin $3; you take these as you find them.
When Belcher brought by a selection of his merchandise, he showed me a new-looking copy of the Pink Floyd album Dark Side of the Moon. It felt big and heavy. Belcher said the disc was made of 180 gram vinyl. This super thick vinyl is made of “deeper grooves” — groves so deep that small scratches made when one is removing the disc from its jacket are too small to have any effect on play back.
Belcher has learned what many youths are learning: the sound of a vinyl recording played on a good stereo system has a richer and more satisfying sound than that of digital recording: especially when the latter are played through weak, tinny computer or phone speakers. “Listen to an old analog system,” he says. “[You’ll be] hearing things [you] didn’t know were in there.”
Business has been good so far. “Last month, we couldn’t get them out fast enough.”
All records are cleaned, inspected and placed in a static resistant jacket. The original jacket is also sold as part of the package.
Belcher also runs the Album Addict web store. But he says online selling is labor intensive. He’s moving more towards selling person to person. In fact, he’s hoping to move Album Addict into its own storefront by the end of the year. To learn more, visit the Album Addict booth at Cedar Chest Antiques or visit albumaddict.com
The Other Side? I’m All Ears.
It’s not often that a big Up Front story comes from DeQuincy. The special attention being showered on that city in this issue is entirely due to the actions of Dr. Eric Jacobs, who works on the staff of DeQuincy Memorial Hospital. On the night of Jan. 8, Jacobs called the hospital and said — according to the DeQuincy PD — that “a man was coming to the hospital to shoot them.”
Police got to the hospital within minutes. But when they arrived, they were told that the call had just been a bad joke.
KPLC asked Jacobs to explain his little joke; he said, “there’s two sides to every story.”
Well I’m heartily relieved to hear that, because I’m damned if I can figure out the other side of a guy with an MD calling a hospital and saying a shooter’s on the way.
Another person who may be looking for that other side of the story is DeQuincy Police Capt. Tom Threet, who said “people [at the hospital] were scared to death … We’re telling them that we have a possible shooter … [We saw] horror … on people’s faces … [We read on social media that people] locked themselves in a closet, they hid … “ It wasn’t lost on Threet that this horrifying “joke” had been made by somebody with several degrees; he said, “we cannot have these kinds of actions, especially from an educated person.” (All of this was quoted in the KPLC report.)
Jacobs, by the way, did not tell KPLC the other side of the story. He just said there was another side.
One person who wasn’t waiting for the other side was Judge Guy Bradberry, who ruled that Jacobs would be charged with three counts of terrorizing.
Think you’ve read the wildest part of the story? Well, don’t quit reading yet. A hospital spokeswoman said that in spite of the fallout from Jacobs’ phone call, it was “business as usual here at DeQuincy Memorial Hospital.” Jacobs was seeing patients at the hospital the day after his call.
Strap me to a hog and roll me in the mud! What if it turns out that sometimes there’s actually just one side to a story?
Mardi Gras Babies Deemed Obscene
A few months ago, Tumblr announced it would remove all adult material from its web site and proceeded to do just that. I wondered how Tumblr could possibly stay in business without that material. For a few weeks there, the media was full of editorials by writers wondering exactly the same thing.
But all of that hubbub was swept aside when a Louisiana ad firm tried to sneak a hardcore porn photo onto Facebook. It was a photo that featured … well … I’ll just have to be blunt … nudity. That’s right. Nudity. And just what was pictured in full nudity, without so much as a scarf or garter belt? The answer is plastic King Cake babies.
Now, if you’re having a hard time wrapping your mind around this, just think it over. Think of all the plastic babies you’ve seen in all those King Cakes you’ve eaten over the years. Did you ever see one of those babies that had a little plastic diaper on it? No. Every single one of them was stark staring nude.
An anonymous Daily Advocate staffer had some fun with the story, writing that “raw, uncensored king cake babies are not suitable for Facebook advertisements … “
The ad with the photos of the offending little plastic babies was run by a Mandeville company called Innovative Advertising for its annual King Cake Snob event— a project designed to find the tastiest King Cakes in Louisiana in any given year.
But Facebook put the hammer down hard this year, telling Innovative “this ad isn’t running because it includes an image or video depicting excessive skin or nudity.” Facebook suggested Innovative “remove any images or video that contain nudity.”
Innovative has run the very same ad with the very same pictures of the very same dolls in previous years. But this year was the first in which they were alerted by the Facebook goons that their ad was kiddie porn that was too low-brow for the pristine, high-minded feeds of the world’s primary forum for sophisticated and ethically rigorous discourse.
Do you think Tumblr messed up — I mean, messed up in the sense of losing many millions of dollars? Well, just wait until the unenlightened masses on Facebook find out they can no longer post photos of babies or dolls.
Andrew Alexander, a representative of King Cake Snob, said, “This is absurd.” I think nobody outside of Facebook is going to disagree with him. The Notorious B.I.G. once rapped, “mo money, mo problems.” He could just as easily have rapped, “mo money, mo stupid.”
Prepositions Aren’t For Sale!
About as effective as Facebook’s censorship algorithms are the algorithms Amazon uses to troll my Internet activity. Recently, I went to a site where the banner ad was for an Amazon product priced at $309.99. Amazon described the product as the “GARMIN STRIKER PLUS SCV WITH CV20-TM TRANSDUCER … “
Here’s the problem I have with the whole thing. I don’t know what Garmin is. I don’t know what a Striker is. I don’t know what SCV and CV20-TM are. And, finally, I don’t know what a transducer is.
I do know that “PLUS” is a conjunction and “WITH” is a preposition. But I don’t need to pay $309 for them. I know how to use them for free.