Syx-by-Gene_Schilling copyGene Schilling

In a captivating new documentary series that’s sure to get music lovers’ hearts skipping a beat, Windsor filmmaker Syx Langemann takes viewers on a nostalgic journey through the grooves of vinyl record collecting. “Spinning Stories”, an eight-part series premiering on Bell Fibe-TV1, delves into the passions, quirks, and personal histories of collectors, record store owners, and musicians in the Windsor area.

The inspiration for the series struck Langemann like a bolt from the blue a few years ago when he decided to create a short documentary about Record Store Day. “I grabbed a few cameras, a couple of people, and went down to Doctor Disc specifically and interviewed people through the day,” he recalls. This experience ignited his own interest in collecting physical media, particularly vinyl records.


“After that little documentary, I think that was 2018, I soon started to collect records,” Langemann shares. “Dave Hunter gave me a really good deal on one of his record players and dropped off a milk crate worth of used records that he had got from somebody else. And it kind of started from there.”

The late Dave Hunter was a beloved figure in the Windsor-Essex community, known for his “Sam’s Over Easy Album of the Day” series featuring his young son. Hunter was a well-known champion of the region who was actively involved in charity events, launched The Drive magazine, and touched countless lives before his passing in 2023. “It definitely hits me personally,” Langemann reflects. “It’s interesting to see what, you know, one person’s connection with music and with their father.”

A001C236_220423OW_CANON.12_07_13_10.Still001 copyOf all the interviews conducted for “Spinning Stories”, Langemann says his conversation with Dave Hunter and his son Sam sticks out the most on a personal level. “I think that was a pretty amazing afternoon to kind of talk through Dave’s history of, you know, music and collecting records, his memory of his dad, and then seeing that getting passed on to Sam,” he reflects.

Throughout the series, Langemann pursues his own “holy grail” of record collecting: the elusive Clutch Elephant Riders album. “I guess you’re just gonna have to come out on Saturday and see if I found it or not,” he teases. “But let’s just say it’s a pretty fun tale.”

One of the most surprising discoveries for Langemann was the diversity of the collecting community. “Just honestly, how many people there were out there collecting, and there’s some huge, impressive collections out there,” he marvels. “But I think, honestly, one of the most unexpected things, a lot of the collecting is done by a lot of younger people. There’s more women getting involved in collecting.”

The series also explores the personal and nostalgic connections that many collectors have to their albums. “I think that nostalgia definitely plays a big part in why people collect,” Langemann observes. “You know, a lot of people bringing up the records of their parents or their family or just remembering a place and a time when they heard that music.”

Langemann’s own children have caught the collecting bug as well. “I realized that not only my own collecting important to me and my music listening, but it ended up being important to my kids. And my kids started to collect as well,” he shares. “So that was kind of something that was really unexpected.”

The series features interviews with a diverse array of collectors, musicians, and industry figures, each with their own unique perspective on the allure of vinyl. From the owner of the legendary Doctor Disc record store to local artists like Gypsy Chief Goliath and Age of Wolves, “Spinning Stories” paints a vivid picture of Windsor’s vibrant music scene.

One particularly fascinating segment explores the art of lathe cutting records with local artist Robin Raymond. “What Robin does, and, you know, many people that are in just the lathe cutting end of things, is pretty amazing,” Langemann enthuses. “There’s a lot less hands between you and a final product, and it’s a pretty crazy process.”

Making an eight-part documentary was no easy feat for Langemann, who faced personal tragedies during the production including the loss of his mother and friend Dave Hunter. “Those were two of the biggest challenges I had,” he admits. “But to kind of get into, like, the actual challenges of doing a production in eight parts, one of the biggest problems during this production was editing and trying to make these conversations between, you know, almost 50 people flow.”

Despite the challenges, Langemann’s passion for the project never wavered. He hopes “Spinning Stories” will inspire viewers to start or expand their own record collections and appreciate the unique music culture of Windsor-Essex.

“If people sit through the eight-part documentary series, I hope they’re inspired to collect music,” he says. “I hope that it’s vinyl. That would be a great thing to see, but just to have that connection with music again, and it kind of supersedes a whole bunch of the other stuff that’s going on in the world.”

D46_9754.MOV.00_17_28_11.Still001 copyLangemann sees vinyl as more than just a nostalgic format – it’s a way to directly support artists in an age of streaming. “I think that people are starting to see that streaming doesn’t help the musicians,” he argues. “Physical music formats like vinyl, like CDs, even tapes, or going to the shows, some of that is the best way to support those bands.”

Since making the documentary, Langemann’s own record collection has grown exponentially, now numbering around 750 albums. He has developed his own daily listening rituals, starting each morning with a fresh cup of coffee and a few spins on the turntable.

Filming the series gave Langemann an even greater appreciation for the rich musical heritage of Windsor-Essex. “We have a very music rich area and a lot of musicians,” he says. “And I think that when I was the idea of starting up this documentary, I really wanted to highlight this, and I really hope that this documentary gives new perspective and appreciation for the region, for other people.”

As for what’s next, Langemann has no plans to stop spinning anytime soon. He hopes to continue exploring the world of vinyl through future film projects and maybe even open a record pressing plant in Windsor one day.

“I know there’ll be some more filming and there’ll be some more stories,” he says with a smile. “But wouldn’t it be great if we had our own little record pressing plant here? You know, you can always dream.”

Spinning Stories” is available On-Demand on Bell Fibe-TV1.

As seen in the May 2024 issue:

519 Issue 69 May 2024 web cover


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