If you were a teenager in the 1950s to the 1980s, the chances are you would have spent time putting money into jukeboxes in pubs, clubs and cafe’s. These machines were the main source of entertainment in most public places where teenagers hung out. The Jukeboxes kept youngsters up to date with the latest music in the charts. These mechanical works of art were normally highly decorated with flashing lights and a glass top so you could see the record actually being selected and played. People loved to watch the whirring and spinning of the machines as they listened to the music.
With the introduction of the CD in the 1980s, the jukebox no longer needed to house records. They were replaced by the Compact Disc that could hold many more music tracks. The CD jukebox still had it’s place in pubs but it was just a necessary music selection tool unlike it’s glitzy Mother from the past. As we moved into the 21st century, Jukeboxes no longer needed moving parts and could store thousands of tracks on touch sensitive control panels. But what happened to all the old Jukeboxes?
Most ended up being scrapped by vending machine companies because they took up valuable space and as a result if this, they became very scarce. Classic units that survived the 50s and 60s are the most valuable with great names like Rock Ola, Wurlitzer, See burg and Ami commanding the highest prices amongst collectors. If you really want to capture a piece of music history, you should hear a record played on an old 1950s Jukebox. The deep bass sound quality coming from a large cabinet being created by valves, cannot be replicated by the silicone chip. The chances are you would have to part with a large amount of cash in order to have your own restored unit but it would be hard to replace the memories it would bring back from the last century when you were a teenager.