Rarities and B-Sides

When I was 14 I spent four sweltering Adelaide days looking for a rare CD of my favourite band.

I had heard rumours of a rare track, only available on this one disc. I already had the other four songs on the EP. I just wanted the rare one. I was happy to spend my paper round money to be able to hear it.

I also spent a stack of cash on bus tickets getting from the sweaty southern suburbs to shiny Glenelg, into the armpit of the city and back again. I don’t know how many stores I visited.

I didn’t even know how to pronounce the CD title correctly. Brow furrowed, I mumbled those three syllables many times, hoping the guy behind the altar knew more than me. They never did.

When I finally dragged my soggy heeled All Stars into the final store, I had almost lost hope.

They let me listen on the Listening Station like a teenaged lab rat. The system played 30 seconds of each track at a volume selected by someone else.

My ears perspired for two and a half unfulfilling minutes inside those headphones.

I had chucked papers over fences for three weeks to hear that song, and it was worth it.

Clutched that square brown paper bag all the way home like a pilgrim with a holy relic.


~ by Daniel Townsend on January 8, 2013.

One Response to “Rarities and B-Sides”

  1. I nostalgically miss those days of rare tracks. Their elusivity doesn’t seem to exist in our iTunes world…

    Beautifully written!

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