Everything Old Is New Again

I ordered a new CD yesterday from Amazon.com, although it's actually an old CD. Indeed, this is the fourth different incarnation in which I've purchased this particular music. I'm talking about the Electric Light Orchestra's Out of the Blue - 30th Anniversary Edition. I owned the double record album when it came out in 1977, I got it on 8-track tape in the early 1980s, and I got it on a CD when I first got a CD player around 1985 or so. Now, I'm getting the digitally remastered CD with three additional tracks (although only one of them is actually a full-length song, from what I've heard) as well as all of the original album artwork in the accompanying booklet.

That last part was almost as much of a selling point for me as the "digitally remastered" part was. Most people under thirty have grown up with compact discs as their preferred musical format. The main problem with CDs is that a lot of the old record albums had cool liner artwork, and much of it didn't end up in the early CD packaging. Indeed, many of the early CDs had blank inner liners or the briefest list of song titles. In the case of the Out of the Blue album, there was a mind-blowing illustration on the inner fold of the album cover, depicting the control room of the space ship on the outer cover. The interior art never made it onto any of the CD versions of the album. My memories of it are old and dim, so I'm looking forward to seeing it again. It's an old friend, long lost, soon to be regained.

I wonder how many more formats I'll end up buying it in over the next few decades?