Forbidden Confession: Submitting VHS Tapes To Discogs Over Vinyl

About two weeks ago, I spent some vacation time following up a lead. It’s not uncommon for me to use vacation time for database contribution purposes. It’s definitely uncommon for me to not involve submitting records to the Discogs database. I was promised over a thousand music video VHS tapes out of a collection that was sourced by a reviewer for a prominent music publication. The guidelines state that the item must have “one or more complete performance” in order to be DB eligible. As they were sent by record labels to this reviewer, we can assume then also that they are valid for contribution.

VHS tapes have not traditionally been something I’ve handled much of. For the most part, I don’t regularly see VHS tapes that are valid in this database. This was perfect for me. Vinyl in the database is really well established. It’s much harder these days to find quantity of anything that’s inside my wheelhouse of enjoyment. Yes, there seems to be an endless supply of Soca, Latin pop, Folk, and Polka records that need love, but it’s really hard to find a Psych, Funk, or Techno record that is totally and completely undocumented. It’s not the vast expanse it was when I started in 2005. So what about VHS tapes? Let’s flash back a moment to Tuesday and Wednesday 07/11-12:

VHS tape of Lionel Ritchie music video, "Don't Wanna Lose You"

I’m awake. Yesterday I got in and got 100 subs down off the pile of VHS tapes and promo CDr’s. This is likely a several-year high watermark for my own personal record. This would be cause for celebration, but I can’t seem to shake this funk. I’m on vacation, my problems should have been left at home…. I had an intense experience on the ride in. Normally I’m a pretty good flyer. I’m on planes a a good handful of times per year. This was different.

We were descending through the prettiest clouds. They were so soft and fluffy. The sun was shining through just right, highlighting as it pierced through. Then turbulence. The deeply euphoric trance I was in turned to thoughts of accepting my immediate demise. Something was off. We landed. I am fine, well, not dead.

I’m not one to usually document my field trip soundtracks. I usually end up with some tunes that pretty well define the mood and thoughts of the journey. So far it’s WildweedsDreaming’. I can’t stress enough how good it is. “No Good To Cry” is one of my favorite tunes of all time. Maybe I’ll write down more. There’s supposed to be a party tonight. I’m anxious.


Everything hurts so damn much. My shoulders are shot from exercising a whole two days ago. Years of worrying out about my elbow issue has pretty heavily fatigued those muscles it seems. That or I’ve injured something again. Good times. I’m hungover from cheap beer from last night’s house party. It’s hot outside and going to get worse. Looks like it’s almost time to hit up the storage facility.

I only was able to make 50ish subs yesterday. This was partially due to a house call up in New Jersey in the morning that was semi-fruitful. A dealer unloaded a few boxes of boring 12” singles and then on to an actual house with some 1950’s pop. Not exactly my cup of tea these days. Not much exactly seems to be at the moment. I don’t party like I used to. I don’t like anything like I used to beyond feeling tired and anxious all the time. What’s got into me these days?

VHS tapes and the Discogs Database

These are the goods, my friends. This is the amazingly dank life I live. By this point I’ve learned a few things about VHS tapes. For starters, there’s a lot and they all look really dodgy. Not everything is valid, either. Maybe about 80% of what I looked at was eligible. Mixed in are screener copies of films, artist interviews and performances on live TV, and items called EPKs (Electronic Press Kit). On their own, chances are these are not database valid, but some do contain full performances and could be valid. Please be cautious when submitting these items.

For the most part, these tapes are one artist, one track, one label submissions, so they go in quick. In many cases, there is going to be a record company name instead of a label name. Most will not have catalog numbers. Some will have work order numbers. I don’t know what those are. Some will note the director of the music video. Those are pretty neat because many are not established in the database. I think of the 400 I contributed, only two of the music video ones were in the database already. Not much wantlist action yet, but I can definitely say that it did wonders for my Instagram account.

Stay tuned to find out if I survived the rest of the week or if I actually died and am now a ghost. The latter is much more likely. My brain was transferred into a robot. You can clearly tell because I now like digital media instead of analog. Beep boop beep below in the comments section if you are also a robot. More to come.

Have you checked out VHS tapes on Discogs? Do it!

Return to Discogs Blog
msuci appreciator
  • […] also no longer living and are also clearly a ghost? Who knows. In our series centering on Fox subjecting himself to awful conditions in the name of data entry and Discogs submissions, we continue our […]

  • Aug 3,2017 at 11:09

    I have one or two tapes: in-store videos are good to track down, with lots of complete video tracks. From those days when MTV/HMV/Virgin was into music!

  • Jul 27,2017 at 12:35

    Nice read, Diognes. Can you now please do a write up concerning the recent crackdown on the “unofficial” releases in the database? Tons of fantastic releases have disappeared from the marketplace without any explanation. Please elaborate and don’t leave us in the dark any longer.

  • Jul 27,2017 at 11:21

    Like Dreaming, love No Good To Cry (the word love ideally in italics, stressing heartfelt true, true love) – many thanks. Not a bad B-side either.

    Fits a certain kind of 60s psych along with, say, I’ll Take It Back by The Calliope or Just A Little by The Beau Brummels. Maybe something by The Association as well. It’s got a northern soul thing going on as well though. Great song.

  • Jul 26,2017 at 21:14

    Of the music video cassettes you’ve submitted, are they all uncut versions or pre-censored versions for television outlets like MTV and BET? Each television station in compliance with their own censorship standards made their own edits. The MTV edits, in my opinion, are one of my favorites.

Leave A Reply