n the same year that we bought our son his first iPod weighing in about as much as a deck of cards, my husband and I bought our first vintage jukebox. It tips the scales at about 350 pounds.
Our son's iPod holds 10,000 songs. Our Seeburg C, from 1952, holds fifty 45 rpm records, playable both sides.
Our son can put in his ear buds and go anywhere with his tunes. Even though the juke has wheels it stays put and my husband and I hang out in our house, close to the juke. It does play loudly enough to fill a few rooms.
One might say that our son is of the modern age and that his parents are lost somewhere between the early Triassic period and the Age of Vinyl.
Yes, one might say that, but guess what: the juke sounds better, feels better, and it does have lights that move. The iPod? Well, it comes in a few colors. It has no lights. No chrome. It does not fill a room with sound.
Honestly, I also now own an iPod and I like bringing it in the car and playing it through the system (I hate those stupid ear buds), But my absolutely favorite way to listen to music is on a genuine Jukebox.
It is not because the sound is out of this world, which it is. It is because it is the whole package: machine, lights, chrome, visible moving parts, glimmering glass, plus a sound that just BOOMS. On a Saturday night after a nice dinner and some wine, we can gets hours of enjoyment playing DJ and picking old songs.
Since the newspaper article came out about our friend Larry Nickerson-expert restorer of Jukes-- he tells me that his phone is ringing, the emails are piling up, and the TV stations are eager to learn more. I guess maybe people are thinking that they might need a nice gleaming juke or two in their homes. I am not surprised. It is a veryhard hitting and contagious bug. My husband and I still haven’t recovered . I am not even certain that there is a cure. And if there were a treatment, I would decline to take it. I love having Jukeboxitis. I especially want to give the disease to others. The expenses of the jukes has been far surpassed by the enjoyment of the music. Honestly--we have gotten more than our money’s worth.
If you check out books about Jukes you will marvel at the absolute funkiness of design. Especially the jukes form the 50's. In many of them, we see the perfect blend of Atomic Age and the Adoration of the Automobile. Some models even have trim that resemble taillights, fins, fenders....A lovely aesthetic that I have come to appreciate to the max.
But the sound. Ah, the sound.
If you live in New England, of course, Larry would be the guy to go to. But if you live in the Southeast you might want to check out http://www.bitw.com/bitwjukeboxes.htm
That’s Back In Time Warehouse and also Bars and Booths. You can get the juke but also turn your whole house into a diner in one fell swoop.
In upstate NY you can give Glen Strope a call at http://www.bluemoonjukeboxes.com