We're staying in Northern California to have a wee chat with one of the heavyweight champions in the sweet soul record collecting realm. Victor get's my highest of love and respect. Not just as a collector but as a person also. Solid dude in my book. As a matter of fact a few years back, when I had a job opportunity in San Francisco, Victor was one of the guys very supportive of the endeavour, offering his help where possible. Unfortunately, in the end, it didn't go as planned. He's part of those selected few that took sweet soul collecting to the highest of heights, unearthing a wide variety of rare killer tunes, and does so to this day. Victor is a man of few words. He lets his love for the music speak through compilations and his Gangster Dedications Radio - another show I love tuning into, every other Saturday from 7 to 10 PT, to soak up all the goodness. 3 hours they launch rocket ship after rocket ship. Real serious business. It's an honour to have Vic in these series. Wouldn't be right without him. Read on...
My name is Victor Vasquez also known as SJNORTHERNSOULERO on Instagram. I'm the co-creator of the Gangster Dedications and Shady Side Of Town Oldies compilations cd’s and host of Gangster Dedications Radio On Mixlr.
How did you get started with collecting soul records?
My journey began when I was about 12 years old with a bunch of random ass records like Rick James , Gap Band, East Side Story albums, etc. But once I started hearing the oldies on those East Side Story albums that’s when it really started for me.
What's, in your book, the most moving song in soul history?
For me it would have to be Bits & Pieces "I Don’t Want To See You Cry", it just hits the spot for me.
Woosh, one-off rarity. Tell us a bit about your collection. Do you know how many you own and any system in keeping things organised?
I’ve never counted how many records I own and really don’t keep track as I have sold many records to many collectors all over the US and overseas throughout the years. As for my collection being organized... I don’t think so , everything is scattered out from my living room to my bedrooms.
I got some good records from you over the years, true! Where do you source your records from nowadays? Online or in the field?
Nowadays you can find just about anything online by networking with other collectors or on eBay. But once upon a time it was not like that. I remember when I was able to hit all the local shops and find some killers for cheap. Also, ordering from catalogs that were mailed to you . So I guess it’s cool now because it’s so easy and everything is at your fingertips.
Collecting deep and sweet soul records has become quite popular globally over the last years while before it was limited to certain regions or subcultures. How do you feel about that? What do you think about the state of the scene?
You want my honest opinion? Some feelings probably gonna get hurt but oh well. To me, I think it’s just a fad these days... the next cool thing. Nowadays, everyone is a collector but hey, those are just my thoughts. LOL!!!!
Can you share a cool story about anything related to your record collecting?
One time I travelled to the Austin Texas record convention about 13 years ago. As I was digging through the boxes I came across a copy of Carrie Riley & The Fascinations. Don’t ask me why I passed on it and put it in the box but as I was back in my hotel room later that night I couldn’t sleep... All I could think about was why did your dumb ass leave that 45 behind so early next morning I rushed back to the show before it opened and I went straight to that vendor and was searching the boxes but couldn’t find it. Then all of a sudden the vendor asks me are you looking for this 45? And there it was... he had it in his hands. So I guess I got lucky that weekend and it was meant to come home with me.
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