Um Cavaquinho em Hi-Fi

I don't have to tell you that LP covers are cool. Right? You're already very much aware of all the bold colors and furious fonts and completely outrageous concepts. Photo editors back in the day must have had mad freedom. Alright, cats, here's the plan: We're going to start with a gorilla. He's dressed in a tux. Give the gorilla a gigantic banana. But it's not really a banana. The gorilla will peel the banana to reveal an extremely voluptuous bartender. In one hand, she'll have a tray of martinis, while, with her other hand, she'll be lighting the gorilla's giant cigar. Dig?

There are people who collect albums specifically for their cover art. They frame them, hang the most shocking pieces on their happy walls. While searching for info on Straker's Record World, I found LP Cover Lover, a blog dedicated to "the world's greatest LP album covers." It's kept by a couple of vinyl-loving friends named Tony and Matthew.

My friend Tony and I are record collectors and we especially love finding old records with crazy, beautiful, sexy, funny, shocking, provocative, absurd, tacky covers. We search flea markets, salvation armies, house sales, stoop sales, garbage cans and, when we can find them, record stores that still sell vinyl.

Tony and Matthew must be pleased with vinyl's mainstream resurgence. Their blog is easy to navigate and, with their findings sorted into only the most essential categories—Big Heads; Cheesecake; Voodoo & Magic; S+E+X; Records and Players; Jennifer; Guns; Heaven and Hell; Bongos and Bagels (my favorite!); and Nude, for instance—you're liable to fill many hours with excellent art.

The album pictured here comes from the collection of Michael Lavorgna. He says it answers the age-old question: What's so great about records and hi-fi?

That, it does. You don't have to tell me what's so great about records and hi-fi. Um cavaquinho em hi-fi!

Ariel Bitran's picture

Thank you for the incredible distraction from my work. I really enjoyed the section Crazy Xians.

AlexO's picture

When I was a kid, my sister bought "Hotel California" LP. I loved that cover. I could stare at it for hours. There were so many things within that photograph. I would always find something new. If you look closely at it, you begin to realize just what a weird cover it is even though it looks fairly normal from the first glance. It's one thing I missed about albums. Alas, that's the only thing I miss. :D

rvance's picture

And like Lynne Shelby says: "You can't roll a doobie on an MP3!"

rvance's picture

Lynne Shelby??!! And I haven't been high in weeks..maybe that's the problem...

Douglas Bowker's picture

There are a whole series of great books out there dedicated to LP cover art. I love that stuff. On Amazon it's:

Stephen Mejias's picture

Lynne Shelby??!!Must be time to vinyl some spin.
: )