Very interesting subject this, and Alan's rant was a great read, some of which I need to comment on later...
2 weeks ago I was off at the Solna international record fair (Scandinavia's largest). I chatted with some other sellers there and overheard a discussion of how the popularity of prog/psych - the old untouchable behemoths of Collector Genres - is going down in popularity. We speculated some of how the people who grew up with this music or are at least old enough to have some
emotional ties to it are growing old. They either have everything 'haveable' or has lost the drive to collect, plus there's very little new blood coming into this scene. What's on the uprise? Metal. The demand for old Metal and Hard Rock vinyl has grown steadily for the last 5 years or more, anything from Def Leppard to Dark Throne basically. This also corresponds with the fact we've all noticed - the growing prices (...which I guess in a weird ironic way makes it a health-sign as far as the 'collector-scene' goes..). My own observation is that the buyers are in the ages of ca 25-50, i.e. people who "were there" to some extent.
Now for some bold, out-of-the-blue estimations:
Despite how "cult" old prog and psych seem today it was rather narrow and fairly underground forms of music back in the days - slightly more so than Metal was a decade or 2 later. This would mean there's an even larger pool of potential Metal-collector prospects out just waiting to get hooked (song now in head
) ...so no, I don't think Metal-collecting is on the regress, quite the opposite.
Downside: Prices ...but more on this in my next rant.
Upsides: More people to talk rare Metals with + our own collections will look soooooo feckin' cool now
(At work so to be continued...)