With the gradual decline in the number of record stores and the increase in downloading and virtual shoppers, buying from online retailers, the Irish CD and Record Fair is a breath of fresh air on the music scene who try to re-establish the fun of create digging in the hopes of finding some sought after slabs of wax for their aural pleasures.
The music Cd and record fair is the brain child of Brian O’ Kelly from the well-known, well-loved and very much missed, Comet Records, which shut its doors in Temple Bar for the final time in 2011. Since its demise, Comet has risen like a phoenix from the flames via an online store and now, the pop up Cd and Record Fairs that travel the length and breadth of the country (at a small scale) giving vinyl junkies and music nuts the chance to go create digging to possibly unearth a gem or two for their collections.
The Flimbase Record Fair is the largest of all the fairs and sees vinyl dealers, both private and commercial sellers, from not only all over Ireland but also from the UK, converge in Dublin for a weekend of buying, selling and trading their way for possibly that elusive collectable that they might be missing from their collections. It’s also a chance for Joe public to make a few euros by selling those records of your dads that have been stashed away in the attic, maybe you won’t get much for the 4 copies of Showaddywaddy’s greatest hits that your dad bought as he was sure that they were going to be the re-incarnation of Jesus or the next Beatles. And sure, you might not get much for the compilation of Barry White’s greatest hits to make sweet lovin’ too that you were most likely conceived during it being spun in your parents’ bedroom. But if you did manage stumble across a copy of U2 – 3, 12 inch vinyl, on CBS Records that’s hand numbered by Hotpress’s Jackie Hayden you could walk away with a sweet €1000 or an original 7 inch copy of “The Farmer” by Thin Lizzy on Parophone Records, well you could be leaving with a pocket full of cash and a kidney.
The Record Fair is a great opportunity for Vinyl Junkies from all walks of life and age to meet up and talk about their nerdy passion. Both old, new and the extreme hipster is catered for at the Fair and there is always something for you no matter how much you have in your pocket. Take for instance, me….. I’m piss poor yet I managed to pick up some sweet 12 Inch singles by the band Sugar (the band formed by Bob Mould after the demise of Husker Du ) including a promo copy of one of their singles on Creation Records for a steal at 5 euros, a Faith No More picture disc for 7 euros, a 12 inch Soundgarden single for €5 and some other bits and pieces to flesh out my collection. I then made a stop of at my good friend, and one of my vinyl dealers, Darus Vinylmanic, If you’re looking for everything from Death Metal to Disney then you would find it all at Darus’s stand. I managed to pick up some great deals in his 3 records for €10 box which included the likes of David Bowie, Van Morrison and The Cure as-well as some Black Crowes singles and the Jam record that I had been looking for for ages. A quick trip downstairs and I came across a Re-issue of The Melvin’s second album Ozma on pink vinyl and afew 12 inch singles from Death From Above 1979 and Mogwai. All in all, I had change from 65 euro to pay for a quick coffee before heading home with my bag of swag.
For anyone getting into Vinyl collecting or even for the hardened enthusiast that hasn’t had the chance to attend one of the Record Fairs yet, I would highly encourage you to stick the date in your diary of when they are next in your town. Who knows what you might uncover????