What Corey Had To Say


Oh, yes. The famous Corey Greenberg. I've never met the dude, but I've heard—time and time again, I'll add—that he was a pretty special writer. And so I went back to the issue—Vol.17 No.5—to see what Corey had to say.

Interestingly, reading Corey Greenberg's report on record-cleaning machines was a bit like looking in a mirror. Just a bit. But I flatter myself. Corey Greenberg was a professional audio reviewer. I am not. I'm simply trying to find my way through this and that, trying to enjoy my music, and hoping to learn something as I go. But, still. Some similarities are there. CG begins his piece by describing, in some detail, his own laziness. "Lazy to the core—that's me," he writes.

Well—what do you know?!—that's me, too.

Corey continues:

And when it comes to the various audiophile rituals we put ourselves through to get that high-end buzz going, I've always snorted at one particular routine: cleaning my LPs with a record-cleaning machine. I just wanna play my records, you know?!

Dude! YES. I totally know.

Let me tell you something else: I don't want to like Corey Greenberg's writing. I don't want to like Corey Greenberg. People talk about him in a certain way, like he was some really hot shit. I guess it makes me jealous. When JA mentions Corey Greenberg, the lights in the office begin to flicker. A shot of electricity zips through the air. Things go dark. A soft halo forms around JA's head. The camera zooms in on JA's nostalgia-eyes. He blinks. He smiles. Ah, that Corey. He went off like a rocket, and then. And then.

And then?

Before JA can finish his thought, a street horn wails from Madison Avenue and the office lights burst back on, leaving us momentarily blinded and confused.

I don't want to like Corey Greenberg's writing, but I can't help it. Maybe it has something to do with his potty mouth, but whenever I pick up a piece of Corey's writing, I'm hooked from beginning to end. This particular piece wears the title, "Free Your Grime, & Your Ass Will Follow."

I mean, that's pretty damn funny. That shit cracked me up, actually. Corey Greenberg said "ass." How can you not like that?

In the end, Corey said what everyone else said. The VPI and the Nitty Gritty are just about equally great at cleaning records. However:

If your records are all in decent shape except for the usual dust accumulation, go for the Nitty Gritty—it's far more convenient to use than the VPI, takes up less space, and does just about as good a job cleaning most records as the bigger machine. If, on the other hand, you do a lot of used-LP hunting and bring home a lot of scum-encrusted records, then the heavier-duty VPI is the better choice.

Well, why didn't you say so sooner? That's all I needed to hear. Like John DeVore and Michael Lavorgna and Haruki Murakami, I am a hunter. Hunting for used LPs is one of life's greatest and most satisfying endeavors. Seriously. It's a powerful, powerful thing. It makes me happy. And, as I've mentioned, my records have been through some rough times. My records are the kind that'll require a mighty scrubbing.

That's it. Questions answered. I'm going for the VPI. Thank you.

dbowker3D@gmail.com's picture

"I've always snorted at one particular routine: cleaning my LPs with a record-cleaning machine. I just wanna play my records, you know?!Dude! YES. I totally know." Don't worry! You only have to clean them with a machine once in a great while- maybe just once period. After, that simple MOFI brush or another will do for many, many listens.

AlexO's picture

Just don't let me catch you on NBC pushing MF's web site or some shit like that. Know what I mean, Jellybean? I'd like you to set up a spreadsheet where you keep track of all vinyl related expenses (except media). Everything from brushes to isolation feet to cleaning machines to cartridges, arms to that special mix of Mr. Clean that you buy especially for your records. Write a blog on that in about 6 months.Oh, and if I catch you on NBC even remotely close to Sue Simmons, there'll be hell to pay.

Doug Bowker's picture

Alex- It doesn't have to be that expensive- up front there might be some stuff that obviously a CD player wouldn't need. But Hey- a boat, a house, a dog, a kid, a yard... they can all be expensive and time consuming, but that doesn't mean they aren't worth having! Sometime some of the best things in life take a little more care, maybe a lot, but what you get back is far greater.

michaelavorgna's picture

You are of course correct AlexO. Owning a turntable is more expensive than not owning a turntable.

rvance's picture

I thought Corey was great- kind of the Hunter S. Thompson gonzo of audio. Then I saw him several years ago hawking consumer electronic gadgets on NBC's Today Show. He made some semi-rude remark that was totally funny, but out of the norm for the carefully scripted MOR network. You could tell he was in a strait jacket. It made me sad. He also never aged or looked his age. Always the cherubic sprite. Has anyone seen him lately? I say he got an accidental look at his picture and turned Dorian Gray.

Greg's picture

Alex: I recall going first to Corey, each and every month. That hit of his wit was a little addiction. Thanks for the recollection.

Greg's picture

Stephen: I recall going first to Corey, each and every month. That hit of his wit was a little addiction. Thanks for the recollection.

DLKG's picture

Is Corey writing for any music mags anymore? He was my favorite Stereophile writer for a long time. Now I think Stephen Mijies is my fave!