If you’re not yet familiar with the works of pop culture writer, historian, and BIMM London Music Journalism course leader, Dr Jennifer Otter Bickerdike, we suggest you get acquainted before reading her latest book Why Vinyl Matters.
The book is an extensive exploration into the recent revival of vinyl and features interviews with an extraordinary list of big-name artists and icons, including Metallica’s Lars Ulrich, The Charlatans’ Tim Burgess, Supergrass’s Gaz Coombes, hip-hop pioneer Fab 5 Freddy and many more.
Why Vinyl Matters is truly a labour of love to the endearing format and tells the story of vinyl’s survival – against all the odds – in today’s digital landscape of streaming and downloads. Jennifer also name-drops 100s of iconic records and artists from her collection, including Fleetwood Mac and New Order.
Music fans will note that New Order’s Blue Monday is still the best-selling 12-inch single of all time, so it seems fitting that Jennifer sat down with the band’s former bassist, Peter Hook, at a book signing in Manchester. Jennifer also appeared at London’s Rough Trade East alongside Future Of The Left bassist and BIMM London Principle Julia Ruzika and Terry Hall of The Specials fame.
Speaking candidly in the book, Metallica’s Lars Ulrich said: “It’s the ritual element of it [vinyl]. It’s running your finger down the side to try to open the plastic wrap, and usually cutting that part under your nail. Then pulling it out, and seeing if there’s an inner sleeve, and hoping for a gatefold.”
Why Vinyl Matters follows Jennifer’s past acclaimed books on fan and music culture, including Fandom, Image and Authenticity Joy Devotion and the Second Lives of Kurt Cobain and Ian Curtis and The Secular Religion of Fandom – both are essential reading for any music enthusiast.
Jennifer has previously appeared on the hit US TV show ‘Greatest Fans Ever?’ as an expert in fan culture is well-respected within her specialist field. We’re expecting big things from her latest work. Why Vinyl Matters is out now; order your copy HERE.