Blog No. 7: So Long, Stan

Stan Ricker and Martina Schoener, CES 2002

Stan Ricker and Martina Schoener, CES 2002

After losing Doug Sax, I figured the Grim Reaper would give us a break. I was wrong. Time marches on, we’re getting older, so – inevitably – it’s taking its toll. Tragically, in the midst of the LP revival, we lose another of the analogue wizards. When the words “Stan Ricker” were uttered, music lovers’ and audiophiles’ ears pricked up: his name on the sleeve was a trademark of quality. It now represents the bar to which all aspire.

I met Stan a few times over the years. He was a gent with infinite patience, always willing to share information about his craft, and an enthusiast to the very end. Never was there a whiff of being jaded. He was of an era where doing the best one can was enough, and his best was awe-inspiring.

This image, taken in 2002, is telling of his passion: here he is, taking a break at CES. Instead of simply hanging out, resting his feet, he was using the time to catch up on the literature to hand. It’s also telling that he’s sitting next to Martina Schoener, the poster child for turntable fanaticism, and as devoted an LP user as I have ever known. I would love to have heard their conversations.

Stan, say hello to Doug for us, OK?

© 2015, Ken Kessler