Mmmmm. Plastic bags. Not man’s greatest achievement. However, I do have a Virgin Records plastic bag, from the ‘70’s. So how did I come by it?
Back in 1970 something (just checked, it was 1977), Virgin Records were open in Sheffield, at the bottom of The Moor. The Moor was a big straight road, flanked either side with shops and down, near the bottom, under a tall, new building stood the shop. As it was at the far end, it seemed a little out of the way, off the beaten track. This gave it that little bit extra mystique. I can’t clearly recall visiting the shop, just a vague recollection of boxes of vinyl and it being ‘sparse’ compared with the likes of HMV, say.
I bought Ramones – Sheena is a Punk Rocker, 12”, 45 RPM.
It has a great black & white cover and the back had a perforated roundel of the Ramones Eagle Emblem. On pulling out the single for this blog post, I found a faded, unused coupon where I could have sent off for a Ramones T-shirt for 99p! I obviously didn’t, I probably couldn’t bear to ruin the album cover. Great offer! That was Phonogram Ltd for you. I doubt you’d get the same today, just ever-increasing numbers of coloured vinyl at ever-increasingly extortionate prices. Oh, and the boxed set for over £100.
What got me onto thinking about this single was a posting in the Facebook group – Just Old Sheffield Photos and a photo of the shop (probably can’t link to it as a group and you have to sign up).
I don’t get to play the single as the record player I have is set up to play 331/2 RPM. It would require removing the platter, adjusting the belt to get 45 RPM and then changing it back to 331/3 RPM. I would be worried I’d stretch the belt and it would affect the stability for playing albums. Which is what I do. I forgot to mention this added joy of vinyl in my Vinyl Post 😉
So, 1977, Punk at its height, the Ramones being a breath of fresh air. I just whish I had had the money to buy a whole load more vinyl from the shop. I did, however manage to hang onto this 12” and even the Virgin plastic bag it came in. Which is no mean feat these days with moving house etc. The fact that the plastic bag has survived? Well, that’s the thing…