We are launching series of interview called «7 questions about vinyl manufacturing».
In this interviews we'll give the same questions to the different manufacturers. The questions are not too serious - so we hope you'll have fun reading the answers. Our first object is Vinilificio, dubplate cutting company from Bologna, Italy. The head of Vinilificio Cristian Adamo answers our questions:
- Hello Cristian! Feel free to introduce yourself and tell us about your production. For example: How many machines do you have? How many employees? How long are you in the business? How many requests do you get per day? How many of them convert to clients?
- Vinilificio was the first stable vinyl cutting studio in Italy. It’s a small studio located in the city center of Bologna, Italy. I have two Vinyl Recorders, one collaborator/employees and professionals for graphics and audio mastering. Vinilificio is on the market since 2005 and I can say we brought a little revolution in the vinyl business as far as we were the very first company to fully customize vinyl records in single copy with printed vinyl and cover.
In 2008 we started a strong partnership with Rand Muzik. Vinlificio manages the whole Italian market for Rand Muzik.
To be honest I can’t say exactly how many contacts I have each day, ‘cause some times they are really too much. We can receive dozens of requests every day depending on the period. The requests are both for vinyl in single copy and quantities. Almost every request for vinyl in single copy are converted in orders. For vinyl in quantities (over 100 copies) maybe 50% / 60% are converted in orders.
We always try to innovate and invest in Vinilficio. Two years ago we moved to a new wonderful studio in order to be able to be more accessible to customers. The last year we started a new project with a new web site and a new app that allowed the client to create a custom vinyl in single copy in 3 easy steps: 1) create artworks for label and cover 2) choose the vinyl 3) upload music. Our goal is to make custom vinyl the most accessible for everyone always with high quality standard both for professional and consumer customers. Finally the new web site and the web app are now online here https://www.vinilificio.com and here https://app.vinilificio.com
Since day one I always knew that vinyl records had a present and especially a future.
- Why vinyl? What does vinyl mean to you? How did it happen that you came across this business?
- As many kids of my age, I grew up when vinyl records, cassettes and the radio were the only way to listen to the music. Compared to the cassettes and the radio the vinyls were the most sacred objects. Simply this was my music background and I always consider the vinyl the most fascinating way to listen to recordings.
I worked all over the 90s as concert promoter, booking agent and record producer not only, but almost focused on the hip-hop scene. Of course the dj and the vinyl (and digging) was a big focus in the hip-hop culture. In 97 I brought the ITF Championship in Italy and I started working much closer with the turntablist scene. My dream was to be able to produce vinyl in single copy for my djs and turntablists. At the time the only chance was to cut acetate dubplates, so no way a turntablist could use these kind of discs. Of course the digital revolution of Serato and Traktor were still to come, so everything remained a dream. I did a lot of research but I never found anything that could really satisfy my needs in terms of costs and quality. The turning point was when I met the Vinyl Recorder in 2004 in Stuttgart, this was the real beginning of Vinilificio.
When I started back in 2005, it was almost a service just for djs and turntablists, but since day one I always knew that vinyl records had a present and especially a future. Of course at the beginning it was a small business, but year after year the small business grew up and step by step I can say Vinilificio is maybe one of the oldest vinyl cutting studios and well established in the vinyl market both for single copy and vinyl pressing.
- How much time do you spend at work? Do your wife or children ever see you?
- The standard working days is 8 hours from Monday to Friday. Of course there are moments when it’s needed to work more. It’s possible to work in front of a computer for hours. It’s not the same thing when you cut vinyl. When you cut vinyl all day long you need to take a break from time to time. You need to be always aware of what you are doing. Listening and concentration is fundamental to understand what you are doing especially in terms of audio quality.
Last but not least if you are tired and not well concentrate you can waste time, waste vinyl and you can do some bad damage on the the vinyl cutting system. It means that there is a moment during the day when you must stop or take a break. Delivering a vinyl with problems is the biggest mistake you can do at work. All vinyl need to be produced properly and double checked with big care. That’s why I try to not exceed 8 hours per day.
- What’s your opinion on how long will a Vinyl revival last? Are we on the edge or still not?
- I think that the pick of the revival will arrive soon, maybe two/four years. Now it’s the moment when real capitals are investing in vinyl record production. The request of vinyl records and the production of vinyl manufacture are still increasing but sooner or later there will be a moment when the offer will be greater than the demand. At this moment the weaker will fall down. What does it mean? It means that there will be a moment where manufactures in order to not lose market positions will start to do crazy prices and to produce bad quality records in order to reduce costs. This will be maybe a turning point of the first vinyl revival. In anycase the vinyl record medium has a very strong story and it will be, as it was and it is now, the “king” of the recorded music media.
- Have you been often visited by a crazy customer? It's boring to listen about good ones. We’d like to hear about the freakiest without saying any names.
- Since day one Vinilificio had crazy customers. In 13 years I can say that vinyl record customers are almost all crazy. The normal ones are really a small part. Recently I met a client who was proud to tell me that he usually buys two copies of the same vinyl record plus one cd. One vinyl is to keep as a back up copy on the shelf. The other vinyl is supposed to be opened, but not to be listened because he does not want to damage it. So finally he listens the music on cd and the vinyl is just for admiring. Some years ago I remember I picture disc vinyl collector who spent a lot on picture disc. He loves to come in my studio, often with his old father. Every time the old father bring me a part and silently pray me to tell to his son to stop to vaste money in stupid vinyl picture disc. It was really embarrassing. I have hundreds of crazy story to tell, maybe one day I will write a book.
- What do you think, when humans spread all over the universe, will there be such thing as an interplanetary shipping? Do you plan to do it?
- I love interplanetary shipping and I love interplanetary travels.
- If not vinyl, then what?
- What? What? What? The phonographic recordings are the only way to listen to recorded music in case of a black out. So if you love music and you feel that music is an important part of your life, vinyl is the one and only thing that can save your life in case of absence of electrical current.
Vinilificio website: https://www.vinilificio.com