Sad-sack classical album covers

Back when vinyl was king, the album cover was music’s best marketing tool. Cardboard for “Dark Side of the Moon” and “Bitches Brew” became as well known as the music inside.

In the classical world, it didn’t quite work out like that. Musicians seemed hell-bent on hijacking the cover for the weirdest and creepiest purposes — and marketing be damned.

Flickr users have preserved some of these oddities for posterity, for our viewing ….. enjoyment. As George Santayana said, those who cannot remember classical music’s past are doomed to repeat its awful album covers. Here we go.

Walter Carlos channeled his inner-J.S. Bach for this kooky, slightly embarrassing, yet altogether satisfying cover.

Los Indios Tabajaras rock that traditional Brazilian Indian style crossed with a “one night only!” two-drink-minimum, Vegas-revue style.

Werner Haas had impressively pearly whites at a time when home whitening kits were basically unheard of.

How many times has this “Chopin is for lovers” thing been reprised?How many of these records were frantically bundled with chocolates and … certain novelty items wink wink …….. and passed off as V-Day gifts?

I’ve seen this record in the vinyl bins of at least three different Goodwills.

When in doubt, Instagram grandpa in the rocking chair. Insta-gramps.

Music sounds Spanish, therefore cover must be a bullfight.

I’m just … so ….. goddamn deep.

Nothing says DGAF like a blank cover.  Hand this one off to your stoner friends, let them color their emotions.

Just as a point of order: the majority of these images come from Hans Thijs, whose collection of photos is second to none.


By Will Roseliep

Writer for different outlets. Personal work appears here first:

One reply on “Sad-sack classical album covers”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s