Boxes of vinyl and CDs took over Edmunds Ballroom last Sunday, Feb. 21 for KSPC’s bi-annual CD & Record Expo. Returning for its 21st year, vendors at the event sold CDs and records, as well as DVDs, T-shirts, and other music memorabilia. A two-dollar admission fee applied to the public, but the event was free for students of the Claremont Colleges. The items sold fit a wide range of possible music budgets, from records costing as little as $2 up to over $50.
Like it has in the past, the Expo drew in a wide range of attendees, from students at the colleges to long-time KSPC devotees from the surrounding Claremont community who were often the most enthusiastic about attending the event. Many stopped by the KSPC vendor to proclaim their love for the radio station, saying how they looked forward to attending the CD & Record Expo each year.
When asked why more students from the Claremont Colleges did not attend the Expo, Phoebe Kaufman PO ’18 said, “It needs to be more publicized. Also, there’s a problem that the 5C’s culture can sometime be too indoors and work oriented. If there was less stress, people would come and take the time to chill and listen to physical music—the records!”
Despite this, the students who managed to take a break in their busy Sunday afternoon looked like they were having a great time. In the age of Spotify and Youtube, taking the time to pick out a CD or record really is like going through a time warp.
Madeline Helland SC ’17 and Luke Sawyer PO ’17, who both work for KSPC, expressed their opinions on the Expo and vinyl culture in general.
“I've been going to the CD and Record Expo for three years now. Personally I feel like every year feels busier and more excited than the last. While I'm personally not into vinyl collecting or vinyl culture there's a lot of other stuff to be found at the expo. Last year was our 20th anniversary of the Expo so we were prepared for less enthusiasm [this year], but a great crowd came out, which was cool to see,” Sawyer said.
Helland said, “I've been going every semester for the past two years, since I started attending Scripps. This year was good; it seemed like there were a lot community members and a nice variety of music.”
Even though new technological advancements that make acquiring music easier and faster, community members stay excited for the Expo year after year. There seems to be something about vinyl culture that makes the time and effort spent in expanding a vinyl collection worth it.
“Vinyl culture is just the idea that some people still prefer to listen to vinyl over CDs or digital tracks. It's kind of exciting that the Expo attracts so many people who still want to curate a vinyl collection or share music that way,” said Helland.
Indeed, as long as people keep caring about a music selection experience that goes beyond a few clicks on a laptop, the KSPC CD & Record Expo will continue to attract large and devoted crowds for many years to come.