It's no secret that rock and heavy metal possesses some of the most committed fans around.
Collectors In Rock celebrates the dedication of avid collectors from across the globe as they display and share some of their most prized possessions with us.
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Collector: Ray Paul
Location: Stevenage, UK
Tell us a bit about you and when/why you have a passion for collecting vinyl:
My dad gave me an old record player when I was about 8 with a stack of singles and albums, everything from The Beatles and T-Rex to the Yardbirds. I fell in love with music from that point and when I joined senior school at 11 I made a friend who was a Status Quo fan, my dad got me some of their albums and along with The Police were my first real bands. I was dedicated too... I collected anything I could find on them.
At this point the NWOBHM started to hit and I embraced bands like Motorhead, Maiden, Vardis, Tygers of Pan Tang etc. Kerrang Magazine helped me to discover AC/DC, Led Zeppelin and of course Kiss. My vinyl addiction began. Junk shops where a great place to discover so many great records, I would sit and stare at the covers imagining what the bands looked like in concert. Then I bought my first gig ticket! Saxon Denim and Leather Tour 1981 with US act Riot in support.
My life changed at that moment... I had found my tribe!
First vinyl purchase:
Via my dad with my pocket money it would be Status Quo - Piledriver/ Hello/ Blue For You.
Most recent vinyl purchase:
Great White - Hooked, with the original withdrawn cover of the naked model.
Prized possession(s): That's a tough one! I would say Kiss- Creatures of the Night signed by the band 1982... I met them at Virgin Megastore and being a huge Kiss fan it was a mind blowing experience.
The needle(s) in the haystack (rarest): First two Sabbath albums original vertigo 1st issues; Kiss - The Originals, Canadian import with all the inserts; Led Zeppelin - For Badge Holders Only, four LP bootleg; Celtic Frost- To Mega Therion original Noise label; Kiss - Dressed to Kill and Rock N Roll Over UK red vinyl issues. The Beatles - Help, German red lettering sleeve.
Most featured artist(s) in your collection: That's easy... it's Kiss! The band only released 20 studio albums and I have about 160. Everything from bootlegs to rare imports!
Top 5 favourites: Mostly vinyl. It means even more to me when it is signed and it almost becomes infused with the memory of meeting that artist so here they are: -
1) Kiss - Creatures of the Night
2) Riot - Fire Down Under (officially the first rock band I ever saw live and met too).
3) Jethro Tull -Broadsword and The Beast (I interviewed Ian with a 30 min time slot, we had a delightful conversation that lasted close to an hour.)
4) Deep Purple- Fireball (original 1st issue with insert signed By Ian Gillan during his period with Sabbath.)
5) Alice Cooper - Billion Dollar Babies (fold out poster billion dollar baby bill signed by Alice himself.)
Kiss - Creatures Of The Night fully signed.
Worthless wonder (not worth many pennies but might mean a lot to you!):
Electric Light Orchestra - Out Of The Blue blue vinyl with poster and fold out card board spaceship, a truly glorious sounding and looking vinyl that quite easy to pick up at a good price.
Guilty pleasures: The Beach Boys. I have every album from the early sixties to present day on original label issues.
Most regular place you purchase/trade/search: It used to be Shades Record Shop in London in the '80s. It was the only dedicated metal rock shop of its day! These days it's car boots and Ebay.
Bargain Bin: The Beatles- Rubber Soul and Help £1 each at a car boot sale.
Favourite non-vinyl collectable(s): That would be my Kiss '70s merchandise collection, everything from dolls and lunch boxes to radios and Halloween costumes.