One day way back in, oh, I don't know, let's call it 1990 (it must've been 1990 or earlier, on account of that was the year the churches in my hometown kneecapped Comcast into dropping MTV because it made God angry) I was watching MTV News. Back then, that was how you found out about things like who Madonna was shacking up with and which up-and-coming glam rocker had most recently been killed in a car wreck by Vince Neil.
Anyways, there was a segment about the death of vinyl records, which included some comments from Duff McKagan about all the things he was going to miss about albums: the big artwork, breaking the seal on a brand-new LP, rolling joints on a gatefold cover (he might not have said this one but you know he was thinking it), dropping the needle into the groove and so forth. You see, back then it was a foregone conclusion that these shiny, expensive plastic discs called "CDs" spelled certain doom for the record album.
Twenty-something years later, who's having the last laugh? Vinyl, that's who. Of course, reports of the record's death were only slightly exaggerated. For most of the '90s and '00s, the format was all-but-forgotten by anyone not involved in the underground rap, punk, reggae, techno or metal scenes. But a funny thing started happening a few years ago: younger kids — many of them born in the '90s — started buying vinyl. Labels began pressing up a lot more LPs and 45s, and even the majors started issuing new albums on vinyl.
The Museum of Discovery's monthly Science After Dark series focuses this month on all the ways vinyl has persisted, despite the numerous obituaries written for the format over the years. There will be some records for sale, as well as listening stations, demonstrations and a cash bar, which means this'll be a 21-and-older event.