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Vinyl Emergency

Musicians, record label owners, visual artists and beyond describe how the influential medium of vinyl has shaped their lives and careers.
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Vinyl Emergency
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Oct 24, 2023

North Carolina-based label Merge Records, inarguably one of America's most influential and prolific purveyors of indie-rock, is on the cusp of turning 35 -- a landmark that co-founders Laura Ballance and Mac McCaughan likely couldn't fathom when they started the label in 1989. Then, Merge was simply a DIY avenue to release tunes by their scrappy quartet Superchunk. But along the way, as the band's jangly but caffeinated power-pop caught on with an international audience, Merge evolved from a modest method of putting out music by Mac and Laura's friends into the beloved home of cult acts like Neutral Milk Hotel, Spoon, The Magnetic Fields and countless others, eventually becoming the first indie label to garner an Album of the Year Grammy, for Arcade Fire's 'The Suburbs' in 2011. On this week's show, Mac reflects on Merge's early years, the label's new vinyl-centric web series Digging For Something, as well as Superchunk's latest compilation of singles, demos and other oddities dropping this week, titled 'Misfits & Mistakes.' Visit mergerecords.com to shop for your favorite releases, and follow @macsuperchunk or @mergerecords on Instagram.

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