Saying Goodbye to My CD Collection

I started packing up my remaining CDs last night. I’ve finally realized that no matter how often I tell myself that I’ll rip them to a drive, or that I’ll fall in love with the medium all over again, they will only collect dust in a dark corner of my house. Don’t believe me? Look how many times I’ve lied to myself about it!

I’m ridding myself of a collection I’ve built over 20 years. With a little effort, I could turn the entire thing into a Spotify playlist in about an hour. It’s hard not to feel defeated. How often did I spend money better spent on food or clothes on music that I barely heard? I’m still finding unopened CDs with receipts that are a decade old. Now I’ll sell them for pennies on the dollar and be glad.

I’m doing my best to not be sentimental about it, but it’s brought back memories of trips to record stores around the world. My R.E.M. CDs have been with me since I lugged them to Denmark as a 17 year old! I can still remember how much I cherished the 40-odd albums I took on exchange. I remember when my collection ballooned to 120 carefully curated discs in grad school. I spent time manicuring it, trading in to trade up, budgeting as best I could to have a collection my peers would respect. It grew to nearly 1500 discs when I mothballed it in the walk-in closet. Now as I pack it up and prepare myself to sell it all, I shake my head with every obscure disc I find encased in shrink wrap.

If you or someone you know would like to own a music collection that immediately makes it seem like you came of age in the ’90s, you might want to stop by AKA Music in the next couple weeks. It’s only fitting that I take them back to the place where I spent so much time and money on the music I’ve loved most.

6 thoughts on “Saying Goodbye to My CD Collection

  1. During this last move I gave hundreds of 80s CDs to Goodwill. I’ve digitized everything and realized I was never going to listen to them. Now someone else can listen to my coveted Lisa Stanfield, Wham and Bobby Brown albums. :) congrats on going all digital!

  2. Thx Jeordan! I still have some vinyl that I love, but I wouldn’t be a former rock critic without it. What amazes me is how much music I used to buy annually that now gets covered for $10 a month! My life improved once I got over needing to own music and video.

  3. Don’t know if I responded to you, John, but I took them a couple months ago. Did great with the first batch. Second batch, probably got lowballed. That said, I’m glad I don’t have them in boxes somewhere in the house doing nothing but taking up space.

  4. Right, Andrew? I got tangled up with a comics critic recently about collecting (hoarding, really) physical media. I’m still guilty when it comes to books and to a lesser extent DVDs, but when I look at my house now I wonder where the bookcases would go. They were a fact of life the whole time I was growing up! Now those bookcases are hiding out in the basement.

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