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Bopin’ in the Big Apple

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The purpose for starting this column was to share with you what its like to be a reviewer. So with this year’s “Home Entertainment” show in New York this May, I thought it would be a good time to talk about Audio Shows.

I had been to a few shows over the years, and I have to tell you there are both real advantages and disadvantages to going as a reviewer. The disadvantages are pretty simple; you have to do other things than just have fun. You have to lug around cameras and note pads. The advantages are equally simple; you get in before it’s crowded, and you get a chance to get to know some really good folks. Oh by the way, at some shows the press gets in free and they have free food in the press room, not a bad advantages either.

Enough of that, let’s talk about bopin’ in New York. I started my trip by going over to see Yankee Stadium. A life long Cardinals fan, I grew up loving to hate the Yankees. I still wanted to see the stadium; what a disappointment. It has lots of history, but it’s a dump. I have new respect for Yankee fans, misguided as they are, they must have a real love for their team to go watch ball there.

The next thing Becky and I did was to take a walk down “Fifth Avenue”. It was sort of like walking around Union Square in San Francisco only not as hilly. I loved the “Apple Computer’s Mac Cube” with the escalator down into the NYC Apple Store, and Becky loved the carriage ride through the Central Park.

Then we walked over to see a friend of mine who works in New York and has a great apartment overlooking the 59th Street Bridge; anyone “Feeling Groovy”? He’s not any friend but Ken Askew, who introduced me to real high-end audio. At the age of eighteen, Ken showed up at Baylor with one Quad 57, one Marantz amp, and a turntable. I was hooked. By the way, Ken still has a two pair of Quad 57s; one in his home in Marin and a pair in his Manhattan apartment. In his apartment in New York, he also has pair of early serial numbered Quad II amps.

Ken and I wih his Quad 57

Well, enough of that. I know you want to know something about the show, but I should say that Ken’s Quad setup for his home away from home sounded better than anything I would hear at the show. What was the most fun thing about the show? Well three things for me. Seeing old friends, making new friends, and the ballroom where there was lots of Vinyl to buy.

The most fun thing though is still finding new music just as it always has been.

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