I’ve been looking at the ‘Vinyl Me, Please’ subscription service for vinyl records, which, conceptually I quite like. It takes me back to the 80/90’s when I was a member of a record club. You may remember the adverts used to appear for them pretty much everywhere in print, ‘Any 6 albums only 99p each’ that sort of thing. I couldn’t find a UK one but here’s a US equivalent (although maybe a bit earlier):
The problem with the service I was a member of was that the first 6 were what I wanted, then they’d send me 4 a month that you pretty much paid normal price for and it was a pain sending them back if you didn’t want them so I usually ended up keeping albums I didn’t really want. In fact, they were cassettes as CD players were pretty new at the time and I couldn’t afford one.
The ‘Vinyl Me, Please’ model seems to work quite well for the U.S., where it’s based but is, I think, too expensive for the U.K, it’s $399 a year, £275 (paid up front, quarterly and monthly plans are more expensive), and for that you get 12 Albums, which works out, near as damnit, at £23 per album. Not outrageously expensive based on what stores are charging, but not a saving either. You do get an art print which, I don’t think, has anything specific to do with the album you receive, and an accompanying cocktail recipe (I think, this may be something another similar service does), which is nice but I don’t see the point of it really. The benefit comes more from the the records themselves and how they differentiate themselves from what else is readily available.
This month’s ‘Record Of The Month’ is Pinkerton by Weezer, and the VMP version has the following:
- Translucent blue w/ black marbling 140g vinyl
- Gatefold w/ pop-out art
- Lyric sheet
- 12×12 orginal art print by Fuco Ueda
Here it is, looking very nice:
If you like Weezer, and received this, I think it would be pretty good at £23, which includes shipping. I’ve no problem with that, but if you didn’t like Weezer? You get 4 swaps with your subscription, but I know me and I just wouldn’t get around to it and would end up with several things I probably wouldn’t want.
I think the Record Of The Month last time may have been ‘The Score’ by The Fugees, a good album, but personally I wouldn’t have been very excited to have received it as it wouldn’t be high on my shopping list in a vinyl store.
I don’t mean to sound like I have a downer on this service, I think it is great for the U.S and if I could pay the same price then I might well grab a years subscription, but it’s a bit expensive for the UK, at least I think so.
The site is here if you’d like to have a look at it: http://vinylmeplease.com/
There are some European versions that do a similar thing, although a little more niche.
I don’t believe I’ve found one that I’m going to join as yet, but I won’t rule it out.