A Podcast Conversation With ... Alan Zweig
There are record collectors and accumulators that the noted Toronto filmmaker distinguishes one from another in his new documentary Records, a self-styled follow-up to 2000's Vinyl. Records had its premiere at TIFF back in October.
By Bill King
There are record collectors and accumulators that director Alan Zweig distinguishes one from another in his new documentary Records, a self-styled follow-up to 2000'sVinyl. Records had its premiere at TIFF back in October.
Each music lover has a personal relationship with how music is delivered. I sold off my collection twenty-two years ago in favour of the compact disc. It was a space issue. I'd been carting from coast to coast 1,200 plus vinyl recordings, many of which on playing popped and wheezed. That copy of Emerson, Lake & Palmer's Tarkus sounded as if it survived one too many campaigns on the front line of war.
Zweig goes about exploring in a positive tone the human relationship with vinyl through numerous on-site interviews with those most attached to the physical presence of the beloved 12-inch LP.
As a '60s generation student of recordings, I knew the LP was all about what played between the grooves. I was trying to master the notes and artistry—the technique and knowledge of those making those records. Today, I'm content with YouTube and Spotify. One song at a time. Not the case for those interviewed throughout this caring documentary.
Records is a film about music. It’s not about a particular band or artist or a genre of music. It’s about the power of music and the people who live for it.
These folks - call them collectors, obsessives, or geeks - use music as a drug, as inspiration, as a connection to the world, to get in touch with their emotions, or as a way to modify their emotions.
Often referred to as a "national treasure", Zweig is one of Canada's best-loved filmmakers and perhaps the country's best interviewer. With his first documentary, Vinyl, Alan made an indelible mark, a portrait of compulsive record collectors that quickly became a cult classic.
Twenty-one years later, Zweig returns to the topic of compulsive record collecting with newfound introspection and a sunnier disposition.