After switching my focus from 12-inch longplayers to 7-inch singles, I began assembling a shortlist of preferred vendors for my 45 RPM fix. It wasn’t an intentional process, but something that developed as I noticed some of the same seller names popping up on my purchases page.
All shared a few certain qualities.
They had a deep inventory of material for sale.
They had reasonable asking prices and shipping rates.
And they knew what “VG+” condition actually meant.
I will rarely buy more than a single LP at a time — not just because they’re more expensive, but also because it’s not the way my mind works. Album purchases are a very deliberate thing, with strict requirements in terms of overall quality. My shelf space is limited, and there’s no space for stiffs in there.
7-inchers give a bit more leeway, as one of the wooden replica Peaches crates I use can hold up to a hundred and twenty five of the suckers with sufficient flip room. It’s a format where impulses can be indulged and the benefit of the doubt extended — especially when the average bulk purchase rarely sets me back more than a pair of sawbucks including shipping. The abovementioned folks are my trusted enablers in this recklessness.
The arc of these relationship usually starts with finding an exceptional deal on a long-coveted release and maybe some equally enticing “plus one” from my wishlist.
After the initial order meets or exceeds expectations, I undertake a deep dive of their inventory for further gems.
Then another, almost immediately after that arrives. By the third or fourth go-round, I’ve pretty much strip-mined them of anything remotely interesting to me.
At which point, there’s nothing to do but wait a few months for the crates to replenish themselves so I can repeat the process.
Please don’t ask me who these vendors are, because they’re ALL MINE DO YOU HEAR ME MINE.