Photographers' Blog

Vinyl’s not dead, long live vinyl

August 19, 2013

Lodenice, Czech Republic

By Petr Josek

The good old times are probably, definitely, gone and the world and all its information will soon fit into mobile phones. You read papers on your mobile phone, you pay in stores by mobile phone, watch movies, chat with friends, take photographs, play games and, alongside many other applications offered in modern times, you also listen to music from your mobile phone.

The time when you sat at home, lit a candle, opened a bottle of wine and pulled out a nice black vinyl record of your choice to relax is history. But there is still a hope.

GZ Digital Media’s factory is located in a small village called Lodenice, some 26 kilometers (16 miles) west of Prague. It was established at the beginning of the 1950s, manufacturing records for the whole Eastern bloc.

Technological progress changed production in the mid-80′s to CDs and DVDs and the vinyl records press machines were dumped into the factory’s courtyard. Luckily, at the time of the huge CD boom the employees of the factory saved ten 1960s press machines and did not allow them to be destroyed. That paid off later as the renaissance of vinyl records arrived in the late ’90′s due to the retro period with disc jockeys and music connoisseurs.

Old machines were moved back, revitalized and production of phonograph records in Lodenice started again. This year the company will produce over 10 millions vinyl records exporting them all over the globe producing records of the biggest hit makers from Lady Gaga, INXS, U2, as well as the legends of my youth like Beatles recordings box approved by Paul McCartney, sets of Michael Jackson, Rolling Stones and almost all big names you can possibly imagine.

So, just as digital photography did not kill black-and-white pictures, CDs, DVDs or even MP3s have not knocked-out vinyl records yet.

The company, with 1400 employees, has become the biggest employer in the immediate region. It may be a good idea to sit down, light a candle, clean up your old gramophone and relax a bit in these hectic times to feel a satisfaction you can get from the nostalgia.

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