The Collector Series: Tomaso Angelo Corda’s vinyl records collection

The Collector Series is a photography and interview project documenting vinyl records collectors in their most natural and intimate environment. Want to get featured on #vinyloftheday? Send us a photo of your records collection and a few words about your records collection to diana@vinyloftheday.com. We have Tomaso Angelo (@mistervinyl) for this week feature, read below.

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Name: Tomaso Angelo Corda

Location: Porto Cervo (Sardinia Island – Italy)

Size of collection: Around 3.000 records.

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Tell us a bit more about yourself:
I am 36 years old. I was born in Baden (Switzerland), to a Swiss mother and an Italian father. I grew up in Porto Cervo, a touristic town located in Costa Smeralda (on the northern east coast of Sardinia Island), very famous worldwide for its emerald colored sea, an exclusive place where humans can still have a deep connection with nature. I work in the civil aviation world as heliport owner. My family Company (@heliportocervo on Instagram) gives support and specific services to all the private and corporate helicopters visiting the island, plus we connect by helicopter the island with the rest of the Italian continent, Corsica Island and the southern French Coast (Cote d’Azur).

During my free time I love playing music and I considerate myself quite eclectic. I love to play drums and percussion, bass guitar and didgeridoo.
I adore every form of expression, so I dive deep into art, literature and of course records!

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What started your interest in music? Is there any interesting story or history behind it?
Music has always had a huge impact in my life since I was a child. My dad bought me the first toy drum kit when I was 3 years old. He has been a drummer during his 20’s and 30’s. He and I have the same DNA so it was easy for me to hold the sticks! 🙂 When I was 8 years old I got my first real drum kit. I remember that day very clearly, a dream came true!

Beside that, I started to discover my dad’s records collection. Most of those records were coming from different areas, from classic rock to soul and disco.
I remember the first time I used his vintage Sony turntable. I restored it and it still works perfectly today!
He has been a club and radio disc jockey for many years. He started during the first 70’s as DJ in the disco clubs and continued as radio speaker.
When I was a teenager I used to stay with him every day at the local radio station. There I had the chance to listen to all the “Promo“ and first releases which were sent periodically by the most influential music labels of that time. I still remember the promo vinyl copy of Jamiroquai “When you gonna Learn“ laying on the radio mixer. It blew my mind, totally… then I kew: this is my music! 🙂
From that moment I kept searching for the most interesting Soul, Funk, Jazz-Funk, Acid Jazz grooves… especially black music.

Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Donny Hathaway, Roy Ayers, Quincy Jones, George Benson, Leon Ware, Michael Jackson, Al Jarreau, George Duke, Grover Washington Jr, Gil Scott Heron, Herbie Hancock, Dexter Wansel, Johnny Hammond, Idris Muhammad, Azymuth, Deodato, Banda Black Rio are my “solid“ point of reference.

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How long have you been collecting?
I bought my first vinyl record when I was 15 years old. I never stopped but I can say that since 5 years I am buying more frequently records through the net or local stores.

What does your collection mean to you?
My collection is a manifestation of my inner soul. Each element reflects a part of me. Every time I wanna put myself together I just let myself go and pick the right record up. Once the music starts the journey inside myself begins.

My biggest emotion is to buy second hand records and put them on my shelf. They have a story to tell and their smell, their color talk to my senses. They are alive, not just material entities.

I always wonder where have they been, which hands have touched them, which emotions gave to the ones who played them.
I am very protective of my records, I never borrow them and I considerate them as sacred, a spiritual gateway to happiness and fulfillment.

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What’s your philosophy behind collecting records and how has that evolved since you started collecting up until the present day?
For me record collecting is a way to get closer to the artists I appreciate, it is a form of respect and thankfulness.
I love the idea to possess the whole discography of my favorite singers, it gives me satisfaction.
During these last years I concentrated myself on buying rare records or limited editions.
I feel like a gold miner, so I am always happy to enjoy some rare gems and make them listen to my friends and the social media community.

Share with us your current top records and tell us a bit about them – why they are your favorites?
Roy Ayers – Everybody Loves the Sunshine (Limited Edition – Yellow Vinyl, 2016)
This is the 40th anniversary of Roy Ayers’s 1976 album Everybody Love The Sunshine.
The title track, ‘Everybody Loves the Sunshine,’ is a quintessential song from the mid-’70s. The rest of the album contains Ayers classics such as the burning percussive funk of ‘It Ain’t Your Sign It’s Your Mind,’ the spacey cosmic soul of ‘The Third Eye,’ the bumping rubbery disco in ‘People and the World,’ and the two horn-scorched closers ‘Tongue Power,’ and ‘Lonesome Cowboy.’

The story goes that Lionel Hampton gave a five-year-old Roy Ayers his first set of mallets, a monumental occasion that eventually led to Ayers’s mastery of the vibraphone. Sometimes called the “Godfather of Acid Jazz,” Ayers revolutionized his instrument as leader of the group Ubiquity, and-incorporating elements of soul, R&B, and blues-was able to formulate a unique brand of laid back jazz/ funk.
You can’t miss it!

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Leon Ware – Musical Massage ( Limited Edition – Brown Vinyl, 2016 )
With a CV that lists Jackson, Gaye and Jones (among many others) and a rich discography himself, Leon Ware has been behind a vast amount of soul gold over the years. This second album from 1976 is one of the many highlights from his personal repertoire. His only Motown released album, it’s a smooth soul adventure with less big band dynamics of his contemporaries and a stripped back backing orchestration. Highlights include the deep shades of Trouble Man on the vocal layers of “Body Heat”, the minor key introspection of “Holiday” and proto Balearic wooziness of “Musical Massage”.
A must have for every collector!

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Darryl Douglas Inc – Holding on (Kalita Records, 2018)
Darryl Douglas Inc. originally released “Holding On” in 1981, and when you listen to it it’s no wonder that second hand copies used to fetch dizzying prices. It’s a perfect get down jam that no doubt used to delight switched on diggers with money to burn. “Jesus Is The Light” is the original B side, a slower devotional soul cut with gospel undertones.
Nevertheless, in my opinion, ‘Holding on‘ stands the test of time as one of the best dance floor – focused gospel tracks to have ever graced the airwaves.
Magic Grooves!

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Any tips for other record collectors out there?
When you step inside a record store, remember to leave all your problems outside the door.
Record digging puts you in communication with music and music has always the right answer and gives you the right mood, just keep listening with an open heart.

Check Tomaso out via:
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