Phillip Rollins grew up on Northside Drive, frequented the old Bebop record store often and enjoyed playing records for the fun they created. He is a collector of music, particularly vinyl, which he boasts to owning as many as 2,000 records. In and around Jackson, he performs as a DJ and operates a music store on Wesley Avenue in Jackson.
“Record stores for me growing up, like Bebop, were very community based. I met a lot of people through Bebop, and I got advice through you know, recommendations.”
From a fan to a full fledged DJ, Rollins started spinning vinyl around Jackson. He moved to Ridgeland from Northside Drive and afterwards graduated from Madison Central.
“When I’m having friends over or I’m DJing, I prefer to use vinyl, just because it’s more fun. It’s a more immersive experience. There’s no other way you can actually touch music.”
A unique aspect of vinyl that other forms of media cannot provide is the tangible interface with the audio, he said.
“Normally, when you have an mp3, you just think ‘Okay, cool.’ and hit play. And then it is in the air. But with vinyl, it is something physical. And you’re not losing fidelity.”
Rollins’s DJ moniker is DJ Young Venom and his store is known as Offbeat. He enjoys vinyl for the culture around it.
“I look at my vinyl collection. And this is what I have. I can take it to a friend’s house and have listening parties or whatever. These are the kinds of things that you do not get when you are on Twitter or on Facebook, you can’t do that.
And these are the things like our parents and grandparents did. Now, you know people are coming back to vinyl—vinyl is like a big thing now. It’s like, ‘Oh, I get it. I get why people had these boxes and these shelves full of records.”
In the store, which showcases local up and coming artists, Rollins sits by the window next to a box of newly acquired record.
The vinyls for sale are wrapped in multi colored plastics lined up on display. There are different sections or records with section titles like “Preloved funk,” or “$5 bin.” There’s country, blues, rhythm and blues and pop selections from the most current artists.
Rollins personal collection leans more towards fFunk and jazz. “My catalog is going to mostly cover jazz and funk around like the 70s era, late sixties era specifically.”
Rollins particularly enjoys discussing the advent of hip hop. “Well, funk really started hitting like in the 70s. And so that’s, you know, kind of like the basis for a lot of hip hop samples and beats and drum brakes.
As far as specific movements, I guess hip hop is probably like my favorite one to talk about, honestly. It’s derivative from kids listening to their parent’s records, and then finding like, dancing, disco beats, and then they’re like,’ Oh, I’m going to repeat this break, so people can dance to it.
“All that stuff kind of just fell into place and stuff like that. And rap is just really poetry. You could go back to like the last poets ,Gil Scott Heron, and start looking at it. I was like, Oh, these guys were like, pretty much kind of really pioneers of hip hop and rap.”
Rollins catalog also heavily consists of hip hop records, something he considers overly scrutinized.
“A lot of people, when they think of rap or hip hop, they have this negative connotation about it. And this derivative of 90s, gangsta rap and how parental advisory stickers started showing up.
“It’s not always all about that. You have a lot of party records, and you have a lot of records about social justice.”