A unique music house in Hanoi
Some huge speakers sets and vinyl recording machines at the Vinyl House in Hanoi. (Inset) Two rare vinyl records of Thomas Edison
Two siblings Tran Dai Duong and Tran Hai Dang have had an idea to turn the whole space of their house in Hanoi from the ground floor to a part of level 2 to exhibit a huge collection of vinyl discs and vintage musical stuffs. Professionals in the music industry thus call the house of the two siblings “a home theater of gramophone in Hanoi.”
Tran Dai Duong, born in 1960, used to be a soldier while Tran Hai Dang, born in 1963, is a deputy head of a music institute under the Vietnam National Academy of Music. The duo has the same hobby and passion to collect all the vintage musical stuffs and vinyl for the past 40 years.
Currently, the house of Tran Hai Dang has a sign board of Hanoi vinyl as people can come to exchanging and trading their products. However, Duong shared that they prefer to call the place a hub for people with the same hobby to come and exchange with each other than a trading floor.
Many people have considered the house a unique home theater where they can come to admire some old style vinyl recording machines originating in the U.S., Germany and Japan dating back to the end of the 20th century, or some Revox speaker sets made in the 60s or 70s in Germany.
At any corner in the house people can find different kinds of vinyl, speakers and recording machines. With some simple steps they can turn on the music and listen to the beautiful rhythms of local and foreign songs. Visitors can admire a rare collection of vinyl records of the Blues Festival in 1975 or a vinyl collection named Sleeping Beauty by Beethoven, recorded in 1960 - a gift from Dang’s friend from France.
Especially, the two have owned an ancient vinyl record of Thomas Edison since the late 19th century and early 20th century. Dang and Duong also preserve some rare vinyl records of Vietnam, including the song Co gai vot chong performed by singer Tuong Vi in 1970, or a record of the song “Hat cho que huong Vietnam” by overseas Vietnamese singer Khanh Ly and late composer Trinh Cong Son, or records of Bac Ninh love duet singing and folk songs of Nghe Tinh presented by popular artists Thanh Hoa, Thuy Cai, and Thu Hien.
Dang said that he was lucky enough to own an old record of late renowned ca tru (traditional ceremonial singing) artist Quach Thi Ho in 1942 in Hong Kong. Some music scholars are regular visitors to the house to search for rare materials of ca tru. A highlight of the collection of Duong and Dang is a vinyl record with a signature of late composer/author Nguyen Dinh Thi, a gift from Thi’s daughter to the two siblings.
A meticulous hobby
Tran Dai Duong turns on music to treat visitors to the Vinyl House - PHOTOS: HAI DUONG
Duong shared that he and his brother used to have over 10,000 vinyl records. But the number of this huge collection has been reduced as they have offered many records to other collectors. Duong made a joke that his collection’s value can be equal to two to three luxury cars.
Currently, they own a rare huge set of speakers with their wooden covers made in the U.S. about 80 years ago. People can only find two to three same sets of speakers in Vietnam but the ones of Duong and Dang are estimated to cost VND1 billion for its authenticity.
Dang added that it’s a meticulous hobby to collect vinyl records as people must learn how to clean and control the records and how to protect the records away from dust and humidity for longer usage.
The two siblings are ready to go immediately to any location at any time to admire and buy rare vinyl records.
Duong and Dang always welcome people to the Hanoi Vinyl house to enjoy beautiful music, regardless of their ages, careers and social rankings.