Bug Vinyl in Beverley is helping vinyl in its amazing comeback
GOOD BUSINESS: Neil Harris, owner of Bug Vinyl.
By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 15 May 2017
It is experiencing a resurrection bigger than the Take That comeback.
Vinyl records are no longer a nostalgic part of the past, consigned to musical legends like David Bowie, The Smiths and The Rolling Stones.
After being overtaken by the cassette tape in the 1980s, the CD in the 1990s and then the internet downloads of today, vinyl records are now making a head-spinning comeback.
The industry has gone full circle and now new store Bug Vinyl, dedicated to vinyl, has opened in Beverley and is enjoying strong business.
PLENTY OF CHOICE: People of all ages are now flocking to record shops.
The shop, in Ladygate, is lined to the walls with artists as diverse as Pink Floyd, Roxy Music and Rag'n'Bone Man.
Owner Neil Harris, who started the business in the Grade II listed building in January has his own theories on why vinyl is now popular again.
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"It's purely because of the quality of the sound," said Mr Harris, who has lived in Beverley for 30 years.
"Vinyl's come a long way from when it first started to lose its popularity. Also you have the artwork on the albums and you can fit more on the LPs now.
"People are realising that their favourite albums from years back, whatever they may be, haven't stood the test of time and of course they'll want to replace the vinyl with a vinyl. You don't want to replace a vinyl with an internet download."
'DOING WELL': Mr Harris opened the shop in January.
Such is the enthusiasm, music lovers queued all the way down the street when Bug Vinyl took part in this year's Record Store Day - an annual event where hundreds of classics are re-released on vinyl, picture disc and cassette and made exclusively available to independent record shops around the country.
But while nostalgia is playing a big part in vinyl sales now beating downloads in terms of intake, Mr Harris, who describes running the store as "his passion", says men and women of all ages are customers.
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When 35-year-old Radio One DJ Huw Stephens visited Hull last week, one of his first questions to journalists was about the location of the nearest record shop.
"There is no demographic," Mr Harris says. "As far as the people coming in here are concerned, it can literally be a student on their way home from Longcroft looking for a new release.
"We're engaging with some of the artists that come to play in Hull, and ask them if they want to come over and sign a few records and meet fans. We had John Grant in here a few weeks ago, and he was such a nice guy."
Bug Vinyl is not the only record shop in Beverley. Mr Harris says he co-operates with the owner of nearby Minster Records on Eastgate to ensure they "complement each other" rather than compete.
"I don't sell second-hand vinyls," he said. "And he doesn't sell fresh copies. It's an arrangement that's working well for us both."
Plenty of factors are behind this Lazarus-like comeback which can only mean good news for the financial health of the music industry.
And now, the thrill of pulling that large square sleeve off your favourite record can be experienced by a new generation for the very first time, and older ones for the first in a long time.