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A 33-Year-Old Artist Has Been Collecting The Beatles' White Albums For Years

Rutherford Chang, a 33-year-old artist has been collecting the Beatles’ iconic White Album for years. Over the next 45 years, each album acquired history – some were loved, some were discarded, some were sold, some were played at night clubs, and others went outside a teen’s living room.

"I noticed how personalized every copy of the White Album has become over the course of the last half century and wanted to compare different copies," he says.

Chang has his collection on display in his workplace in New York. Visitors are welcome to browse the collection and if they have any unwanted copies of the White Album, Chang buys them. Since the exhibit, he’s collected 697 varied copies!

"Each copy has become a unique object because of the physicality of vinyl records," says Chang, "It's a format that is impossible to keep pristine, unlike digital recordings, so this collection of artifacts, created by the individual journeys of each album, has become a document of an era that will never be replicated again."

Chang doesn’t just focus on the physical appearance of the albums but also on their audio quality which is affected by the disc’s quality over the years.

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Ah yes, the days before digital music. If one was lucky, a Japanese or British pressing of the album would show and it was well worth the extra money. American pressings were not pure vinyl; they are hard plastic with vinyl coating. Pure vinyl can be held up to bright light and see through, and possess superior sound quality. Extremely lucky...Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Original Master Recording. I remember distinctly purchasing the White Album as such, the sound was so good the analog tape hiss was present throughout. Next best thing to hearing it in studio.
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