Nostalgic Photos of Iconic Records and the Vintage Turntables That First Played Them

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Using Rolling Stone‘s The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time as a resource, photographer Kai Schäfer has catalogued landmark records in music history and the vintage turntables that first played them in his World Records series. Photos of famous vinyl — including albums by Bowie, Elvis, and Joy Division — recall a time when collecting music was a tactile and perhaps more intimate experience. “It is also a private time machi­ne to the spectator: music as an impulse to remember bits and pieces of one’s personal history, a release of former thoughts and feelings. The soundtrack of your life,” the artist writes. Schäfer is celebrating his first solo exhibition at Kopeikin Gallery in Los Angeles, which runs until July 13. Visit the gallery’s website to find out how you can see over 100 photos of your favorite albums. Click through for a preview.

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

Joy Division, Unknown Pleasures on Revox, 1979

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

The Velvet Underground, The Velvet Underground & Nico on Thorens, 1967

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

David Bowie, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars on B&O (Bang & Olufsen), 1972

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

The Clash, London Calling on B&O (Bang & Olufsen), 1979

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

The Cure, Three Imaginary Boys on B&O (Bang & Olufsen), 1979

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

The Beatles, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band on Thorens, 1967

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

Elvis, “Mystery Train” on Braun, 1955

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

Johnny Cash, Johnny Cash Sings the Songs That Made Him Famous on Garrard, 1958

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

Motörhead, Ace of Spades on Technics, 1980

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

Prince, Purple Rain on Technics, 1984

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

The Beach Boys, Pet Sounds on Thorens, 1966

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

Kraftwerk, The Man-Machine (Die Mensch·Maschine) on Revox, 1978

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

Michael Jackson, Thriller on Ariston, 1982

Photo credit: Kai Schäfer

Pink Floyd, The Dark Side of the Moon on ADC Accutrac 4000, 1973