Interview with JEROME FARIA, Record Collector from Lisbon

Jerome Faria

Jerome Faria is a Software Engineer and music enthusiast based in Lisbon, Portugal, who has been a record collector for a few years and whose vinyl collection includes over 300 LP’s. His record collection may not seem huge, but there are some excellent and groundbreaking albums. Faria manages an Instagram account which is mostly filled with photos of his vinyl collection in HD quality.

Vinyl Sphere talked with Jerome about record collecting, he tells us about how he goes about choosing new vinyls, his most valuable records and more.

How did you go about starting your vinyl collection, and how long has it been since you are a record collector?

I have been collecting things quite obsessively for as long as I can remember. Considering my passion for music, vinyl was just a logical progression from collecting CDs and even MP3 files.

Also having worked in a music store in the past, it was something that was bound to happen at some point, and it finally did when a friend who had just started his own label hooked me up with my first record in early 2015.

What was the first vinyl you bought or received?

The first record that I purchased for myself was Filth by Swans. This was before it was reissued so it was a rare opportunity to get it on vinyl at the time.

I had a couple more that I picked up over the years. A copy of Led Zeppelin‘s Coda was offered to me as a gift and also a compilation of BB King’s greatest hits that I got as a souvenir from a radio station I used to work at.

Swans – Filth (Photo: Jerome Faria)

How large is your vinyl collection?

I just recently broke the 300 records milestone in a little under 3 years, even though I still have an empty square space on my 2×4 Kallax shelf.

I guess that will be my next goal 🙂

How do you go about choosing which record will have a place in your collection? Do you usually check new albums online, or do you grab a record just “out of the blue,” or it’s a mixed bag of these two?

That’s a very good question! I started by picking up the classic albums that I knew I wanted to own on vinyl. Those are the ones I have been listening forever and I know are worth the investment in both money and time to experience properly.

At some point, the same friend who got me into vinyl asked me an intriguing question: why would I only purchase records that I already know instead of picking up new ones that I haven’t heard before?

So I started taking more chances on bands and albums that I don’t know so well and now I try to pick a classic and something new every time I make a purchase.

Where from do you get your records usually?

Generally, I get my records at concerts and online. When it’s a specific album or band, I would rather get them straight from the artist or the label when it’s possible.

I also have a couple of friends running small distribution labels and I will occasionally pick some records from their stock or lists. Typically that will be based on style so I’ll choose from artists that I like or that I heard about but haven’t listened yet.

A part of Black Metal collection, inluding the original pressing of Hellhammer’s 1983 album Apocalyptic Raids (Photo: Jerome Faria)

What is the most valuable record in your collection? And do you have sort of a wishlist with records that you want to get one day?

It is difficult for me to decide whether the most valuable record in my collection is the rarest, the most expensive, the one I have listened to the most or the one I waited for the longest to finally get.

I can tell you that the one I have played the most is Lateralus by Tool, not only because it is truly a masterpiece but also because it is a dear favourite of mine.

The one I waited for the longest was The Fragile by Nine Inch Nails. It was one of the first records I wanted to purchase as soon as I became serious about collecting but the original and only pressing was so crazy expensive. I am glad they finally reissued earlier this year, even though it was delayed and still took 8 months from the purchase until I finally got it.

As for the most expensive, I own an original pressing from Hellhammer‘s Apocalyptic Raids from 1983. It is a rather obscure piece of black metal history that I was lucky enough to purchase in extremely good condition.

My wish list continues to grow every day as I find out about new bands or as I remember albums that I absolutely must have. I try to keep track of it on Discogs but then it becomes difficult to manage as there are so many records I would love to own and only so many hours in a day to listen to them.

Tell me about your turntable setup (turntable, preamp, speakers,…).

My current setup is very basic. I own Rega RP1 turntable feeding through a Rega Fono Mini A2D preamp and out of a pair of Samson Media One 4A monitors.

It has served me well up until now but I am beginning to see the benefits of higher quality turntable compared to an entry-level setup like mine, especially on the way you handle your records if you need to skip a track or change the speed without having to remove the plate.

I used to work in a nightclub with DJ’s and I have always admired the Technics SL-1200. I would love to get one at some point, even though I hear it is more suited to DJ’s than it is for home listening.

Jerome with his copy of Darkthrone’s Transilvanian Hunger

Do you have any advices for people that are about to start or just started collecting vinyls?

Collecting vinyl can become quite passionately addictive. It’s easy to get carried away and to start hunting a specific pressing of an album because it sounds better or because it’s a nice colour, and before you know it, you’re after all the pressings you can get your hands on and dropping mad stacks of cash on Discogs and Amazon.

There is also the audiophile side of it, in which you start becoming obsessed with speaker placement and room acoustics and then you get into the obsessive side of audio quality instead of actually paying attention to the music.

To me listening to vinyl is primarily about the experience of sitting down and setting some time aside to pay attention to the music. The whole experience from opening a new record, sometimes find some cool poster or sticker inside, drop the stylus on the record and hearing that initial contact with the record, reading through the lyrics and liner notes while you listen.

What I am trying to say is: don’t put your fingers on the grooves, hold the record by the sides and don’t stack them horizontally. You’re welcome! 😉

Follow Jerome on Instagram here.

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