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Vinyl Views is our weekly blog where we feature album recommendations from our store team (Shayne and Jaxon) and reveal picks from guest contributors. This week we finally coerced Shayne’s Mom to participate! 

Scroll down to read this week’s album picks or start shopping!  Sign up now to be a part of our Vinyl Views family and be the first to hear about new releases, store events, and exclusive promotions.  Looking for a prior week of Vinyl Views?  If so, CLICK HERE

Vonnie truly needs no introduction around here.  Shayne’s Mom (obviously) and a bigger influence on his musical taste than she likes to take credit for. You all probably know her as Val’s halla’s sometime social media ambassador and local artist liason!

Artist: Barbra Streisand
Album: Songbird

First and foremost I’d like to apologize for not being among the first to contribute to Vinyl Views. Shayne convinced me that some people may be interested in what I had to say about music. As it happens music has always been a big part of my life at a very early age. Whether it was music used to choreograph a floor routine for gymnasts or playing in an orchestra and the marching band, also later on teaching aerobics in the early 80’s. Music was always around our house and it was my parents music I loved first. They had a lot of great albums, like Barbra Streisand, (I’m drawn to singers that can really belt it out). I try my best to sing along. I find it very cathartic. I even got a chance to see her in concert in the early 90’s. Take a listen to one of my favorites, Songbird.

Check out the track Songbird

Artist: Roger Whittaker
Album: All My Best

Then there are those days when you’re exhausted from chores and at this early age I would throw on an album hang upside down and think through the list of chores while listening to an old favorite Roger Whittaker. Now I know none of my friends were listening to this. I loved it and still do. Shayne note:  Mom had been looking for a specific Roger Whittaker album she had on 8 track as a kid and one day I realized I randomly had the record in my own collection!

Check out the track Summer Days


Artist: James Brown
Album: Get Up Offa That Thing

Last pick for this Vinyl Views will be James Brown. I use music as a tool sometimes  and in this instance it was to improve my mobility after a sudden case of Scoliosis late in life. I would be up at 3 in the morning with my headphones on dancing in the kitchen to James Brown. Get Up Offa That Thing. It helped me maintain mobility and with the help of my Chiropractor we got it straightened out pretty well. Listen to  James Brown,  Get up off that thing!

To anyone who made it though start to finish, I  thank you. I get very emotional when I have to talk about how important music is to me, and what it has done for me. Thank you!

Check out the track Get Up Offa That Thing

Artist: The Beatles
Album: Yesterday And Today

In honor of my dazzling film debut in Stuck In The Groove (A Vinyl Documentary) I have decided to share a few fun stories of rare and valuable records.

This is a no-brainer, for the three people who never heard Val tell the story, before the store Val worked for Capitol Records in the glory days of The Beatles and The Beach Boys.  One fateful Saturday she was called in on her day off and tasked with stripping and/or burning thousands of the fabled “Butcher Cover” of Yesterday And Today.  People would ask often over the years why she didn’t snag a couple for herself.  Her answer was simple “I’d rather not lose my job!”

Check out the SUPER OBSCURE track Yesterday


Artist: The Sound Of Reign
Album: Reigned Out

Jaxon’s greatest victory and something I’ll never hear the end of.  I had put some records in the back to be thrown out or donated and of course he wanted to flip through them.  For whatever this record cover spoke to him and piqued his curiosity.  What I thought was junk turned out to be an incredibly rare garage record which the kid turned around and sold for $500 plus a Kukl record for himself as a finder’s fee!  Whoops!

Check out the track Purple Haze


Artist: Soundgarden
Album: Superunknown

Jaxon & I have gone back and forth over which is our favorite Soundgarden album (his is Badmotorfinger, mine is Superunknown) so you can imagine my excitement when a recent buy included an original 94 pressing on clear vinyl!  As soon as he held it up I was like “Oh Oh MINE!”  Then he had to go and look it up and told me I wasn’t allowed to buy it…  Kid can be a jerk sometimes.

Check out the track Spoonman

Jaxon is switching it up this week with a custom playlist!  Check it out here or come into the store and listen to it in our Sounderator (tricked out 1940’s refrigerator that you sit in while enjoying a tasty selection of tunes).

From: Jaxon: I am currently in the process of moving, and am stuck in the limbo that is the time between when we move out and when we move in. So in honor of this change in my life, I am making a moving playlist.


Access the Spotify Playlist Here =>   

Curtis Mayfield

Song: Move On Up



Song: Our House


Young MC

Song: Bust A Move



Song: Situation


Peter Gabriel

Song: Growing Up


Twenty One Pilots

Song: Hometown


Paul Simon with Ladysmith Black Mambazo

Song: Homeless


The White Stripes

Song: I’m Bound To Pack It Up


How Do I Order Music (Or Other Things)?

Val’s is now open again (safely)! Bring a face mask and we will sanitize your hands on the way in.  Social distancing, of course.  Val’s halla has worked hard over this quarantine period to launch its Online Store which has thousands of titles for you to choose from.  We will continue to add inventory everyday, but just let us know what you are looking for!  We are happy to look through our off-line inventory of over 50,000 titles to see what we have for you.  Also, we place orders with our distributor every Monday which means we see them in our store by Tuesday (most of the time).  We sell records (as well as turntables), CDs, cassettes, 8-tracks, DVDs and more.  To get started, you can Click Here to access the Online Store, or fill out the form below to let us know what you are looking for.

What About Delivery?

Val’s is offering Curbside Pickup and No-Contact Delivery Service to customers who live within a 5-mile radius of the Oak Park Arts District. Orders can also be shipped to customers outside that radius for a flat fee of $5.  Order as much as you want – still $5 shipping! Stay safe and be well!

What Are You Looking For?