Heavy Metal Collectors: An interview series
Part 17: Rob K. (Canada)
Inspiration can come from a number of unique sources. The concept behind this interview series was developed over time but recently crystallized in my mind. As the owner of a large library I’ve often pondered about the nature of collecting Heavy Metal music (Cassettes, vinyl, CD’s, memorabilia etc) and how and why people accumulate Metal ‘stuff’. In 2017 Martin Popoff wrote a book called METAL COLLECTORS which I read, thoroughly enjoyed and reviewed. It occurred to me that there are lots of people out there with pretty massive Metal collections so I decided I wanted to chat to some of them and interview them for the site.
My concept is to, over time ask people with some pretty impressive, monster collections the same series of questions. I’m basically stealing that idea of METAL COLLECTORS (Sorry Martin!) and expanding into an interview series. Lastly, the name for this series was spawned by a gentleman by the name of Ray Wawrzyniak. He appeared in the Rush documentary TIME STAND STILL. Ray is a Rush super-fan and in one particularly charming scene in the film, the genial and friendly (but clearly obsessed) Ray shows off one piece of his Rush collection and refers to it with barely hidden glee as ‘Spectacularly Majestic’. It was in fact ‘just’ an old piece of paper, (a Rush ad from a magazine from 1979) but that phrase alone and his enthusiasm I feel embodies the spirit of Metal collecting, because I suspect that many Metal collectors have those same moments. Check out the 1:30 minute mark of the video below.
If you, or know someone you know, has a monster Metal collection (in the 1000+ range) please feel free to get them in touch with me!
Tell us how you started collecting Metal! When did you start?
Was around 1983 or so…I remember my older brother had a tape and on 1 side was Bodine and the other was Kill ’em All..I was like whoa whats this!? Only thing I had up to that time was cassettes of Number of the Beast, Blackout by Scorpions and Escape by Jouney! haha
How big is your collection?
Not to bad I guess.maybe close to 2500 to 3000 pieces…
Can you give us a break down? (Vinyl, vs. Cassette, vs. CD vs. digital)
Sure I’m quite anal as everything is on Excel and as soon as I get something in I get it down. I have 944 CDs (as you know..recently I got rid of close to 500 of them) 1659 LPs…..266 picture discs,219 CD and LP boxsets and 211 7 inches
How do you count your collection? For example. If you have say for example, multiple copies of KISS-Destroyer on the following media; Vinyl, 8-Track, Cassette, CD, and digital format do you count that as five items or just 1 item?
Everything counts as 1 on it’s own..so if I have 4 Hooded Menace LPs and each one is a different colour or limited pressing I just list it as so….
When you collect certain bands, do you buy all of their stuff such as Live albums, EP’s, Compilations, box-sets etc?
I’m kind of all over the place..It really depends on how much i like the band or how cool the package is or how limited it is…Not a huge live album guy per se..
How do you organize your collection if at all; by genre, Chronologically? Alphabetically?
A to Z
Do you insure your collection?
How do you store your collection?
All displayed in my basement
What is your preferred genre(s)? Do you have a genre break down of your collection? For example 15% Death Metal, 25% Black Metal etc?
Old school Death Metal,Death/Doom,Funeral Doom.Thrash and Prog Metal.
Do you sell and trade or strictly buy?
For the most part buy..I’ll sell stuff but only if I have doubles or sometimes I’ll buy a LP and if I don’t dig it..I don’t really want it in my collection so I’ll sell it.
What is your preferred format?
How do your track your collection? Do you use a spreadsheet or one of the on-line services or even a hand-written list?
Excel and Word
What is your most valuable piece? (not in terms of sentimental value, but in actual terms of resale value on the open market. ie. Goldmine etc. )
Most likely my Immortal –Battles in the North Clear..limited to 333. Goes for over $300
What is your rarest item in your collection?
What is the most you have paid for an item?
$200 of the Immortal-Sons of Northren Darkess metal CD boxset
Do you collect other non-music Metal memorabilia such as books, DVD’s, T-shirts, stickers, hot sauces, wine/beer etc?
A few mags and books
What is the one item you have been searching for that you cannot seem to find?
haha..easy one…Bathory-S/T LP with the Yellow Goat on the cover!
Why do you collect Metal music?
I just love Metal…It whats keeps me alive ahaha..Everytime I see a package in the mail or am thinking this week that certain LP should be coming. Gets me still really excited to this day.
In a morbid and Metal question, what do you plan to do with your collection when you die?
Not sure…Maybe donate to my good pals.