Wax Packs Brings The Fun Of Baseball Card Collecting To 7″ Vinyl Releases

Wac-packsWax Packs is an interesting new venture inspired by baseball card collecting. The basic idea is that you can get a "pack" with a single random 7" record or a "box" with 5 different records, one guaranteed to be on "rare color vinyl," plus a collectible download card. The box (shown at left) is designed for countertop display but is also ready for direct sales. The first release of Wax Packs is not available until January 28 but you can preorder them now.

Wax Packs is an interesting way to connect baseball card collecting urges to the vinyl craze. As you can see in the intro video below, Wax Packs also ties in nostalgia for one's youth.

Series 1 features 19 artists on 10 7" vinyl records:

Gold, Austin Lucas, PJ Bond, Podacter, Arliss Nancy, Banquets, John
Moreland, Half Hearted Hero, Broadcaster, Aspiga, Boxer, The Hundred
Acre Woods, Gifthorse, Broken Field Runner, Casual, Crybaby, Marathon,
Fire When Ready and Placeholder."

You can sample some of the tracks.

Wax Packs Series 1

Here are more details from the official announcement:

"Each 7" is pressed on Black Vinyl, Color Vinyl (limited to 150) and hand numbered color vinyl (limited to just 50 copies). All 7"s are then placed in a jacket (identical artwork) and shrink wrapped to create random 'packs'…"

"Each box contains: 5 packs, one limited edition color vinyl, and a box topper trading card. You're guaranteed to get 5 different 7" records in each box. The box topper trading card features one of the bands in the series (collect all 20!) with a digital download code good for each song in the series."

You can preorder a pack, box or "case":

"Hobby Case: 10 Sealed Hobby Boxes + Bonus case topper – 1 random test pressing from one of the 7"s"

Pricing: Pack – $6, Box – $28, Case – $275

How Wax Packs Are Like Baseball Trading Cards

Wax Packs attempts to leverage the tradition of collectible baseball cards and related collecting behavior in its name and overall concept.

Like baseball cards, you know the possible players that might be in a pack but you can't be sure of the exact contents.

Special cards might be randomly available.

In addition, Wax Packs adds special goodies for those buying boxes and cases.

These elements are designed to encourage repeat purchases as well as social networking in the form of vinyl record trading.

Ideally a sense of mania traps the collector into an obsessive relationship with the whole series that overshadows interest in any one player or musician.

How Baseball Trading Cards Are Different From Wax Packs

There are some significant differences between baseball cards and Wax Packs.

Baseball cards are a lot cheaper.

Baseball cards are portable, lightweight and fit in your pocket for easy transport and face-to-face trading.

If there's no gum in the pack, harkening back to actual wax packs, then
there's nothing to melt if you leave your cards in your hot car.

Baseball cards feature famous people and their supporting acts.

Are Baseball Cards the Right Metaphor?

Like most metaphors, the further you spin it out, the less it tends to fit. Baseball cards are hits for very specific reasons only some of which can transfer over to vinyl release packs.

But that's not necessarily a problem. Such metaphors are typically designed to give you an easy way of grasping an overall idea before digging into the details.

Wax Packs does draw on many elements specific to baseball trading cards which will make the concept easier to grasp. And vinyl fans are often avid collectors especially if they're crate diggers.

The differences between baseball cards and vinyl releases are enough to make one assume that Wax Packs would have difficulty matching the scale of baseball card collecting mania but that's not really necessary.

If people enjoy the mystery hunt, start buying multiple packs and then extend the metaphor to trading, Wax Packs could be plenty big enough to successfully move some vinyl and introduce listeners to new music.


Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch/@crowdfundingm) also blogs at Flux Research and Crowdfunding For Musicians. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.

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