From the old-school analog days to the modern digital wonderland, the music industry has developed on hyper speed over the past few decades. Once everyday items, vinyl records have been swallowed up by evolution as listening preferences have transitioned to cassette tapes, CDs, and, now, streaming services. Many have dismissed them in the process. Records are dated, they say, better served in memory than practice. Vinyl, however, is making a comeback, filling patios, living rooms, and bars with the rich sounds of a record spinning under the needle.
Look no further than Vinyl Die Hards for proof of the renaissance. Owner Hear Pak, who has been in the record industry for over 40 years, raised his only daughter, Saipin “Jah” Korbenjawan, among his sea of old records. She inherited her father’s passion. Together they opened Vinyl Die Hards in 2014, the name of the shop a pretty straightforward indication of the way they feel about vinyl.
One of the largest of its kind in Bangkok, Vinyl Die Hards is a treasure chest of both used and brand new records, and at a very fair price unlikely to be found elsewhere. Some of the older records date back fifty years or more. There are also new cuts from artists such as Daft Punk, Adele, One Republic, Maroon 5, and Coldplay available. These alone suggest the power of the medium. Despite being firmly entrenched in the Digital Age, top artists continue to release tracks on records.
Vinyl Die Hards is a digger’s paradise. Rarities from the West and the East, from America to Japan, are scattered throughout the store. Jah spends much of her time looking for new imports—there are many thousands of them. Thanks to its vast selection, the store attracts a steady stream of visitors, even if it means a trip across town to Srinakarin Road, near the vintage enclave that is talad rot fai. It’s a mix of listeners, too. Some own turntables, and others simply appreciate the sound and nostalgia of classic vinyl.
The store itself is simple and cosy. Black and red shelves contrast wooden walls, and the air is laced with earthy aromas from Colombia Coffee next door, a small café owned and operated by Jah’s mother. Capping the home-like vibe is the warm service of the father-daughter duo. They have encyclopaedia-like knowledge. As is so often the case with those who eat, sleep, and breathe their work, they are happy to chat, their gusto palpable to shoppers perusing the collections.
Vinyl Die Hards
Opposite to Paradise Park, Srinakarin Rd | 0 2346 4547 | vinyldiehards.com, facebook.com/vinyldiehards | 9am-8pm