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Various: Sports Cars in Hi-Fi (1957)

I come from a long line of committed hobbyists – no, really, we should practically be committed, given our hermit-like tendencies when it comes to exploring our hobbies.

My father, for example, was just about as crazy about cars as I am about music, and I say “was” not because he’s dead, but because he’s been lost to the advanced stages of Alzheimer’s disease for years now – today is his 77th birthday. 

I automatically assumed this was his record when I found it in our house, until I saw a sticker claiming it as the original property of my grandfather, whose own hobby was building electronic gadgets from scratch, out of a back room in his house that he dubbed the “shack,” pronounced “shahckee” by his Portuguese-speaking grandkids.

These gadgets included amateur CB radios to converse with fellow hobbyists around the world during WWII, and I feel like his curiosity about global communication sort of presaged my father’s love of travel (and planning travel – with exhaustive detail), my early interest in all things worldwide web – as well as our shared capacity to wile away hours of solitude in the pursuit of our respective interests.

(I haven’t even told you about my brother, a.k.a. the real live, Indiana Jones, who ventures to the corners of the earth in search of rare carnivorous plants, and clearly inherited the very same gene.)

All this and I haven’t even described today’s LP yet, but then I found no audio evidence I could link you to online, such a bummer.

So I’ll simply have to tell you that Sports Cars in Hi-Fi literally consists of nothing but revving engines from some of the era’s most famous muscle cars (Jaguars, Porsches, Lotuses, Maseratis, Ferraris, et al.) on side one, and roaring sounds of racing action on side two.

The first grows tedious pretty quickly (although I’m sure it’s pure heaven for genuine car nuts), but the second is oddly soothing in a peculiar way – though I’m obviously not interested in this album’s contents, so much as the family ties I discern gunning their engines out of its grooves.