An album collection is incredibly personal.
Flip through someone's discs, and you get a window into not only who they are but who they've been. An unexpected reggae fan. A Top 40 worshipper. A teen with a penchant for bubblegum pop. A completist or a casual fan.
Now followers of Jeff Buckley can explore the singer-songwriter's own music stash, digitally, through a new Sony project called Jeff Buckley: The Record Collection.
For the unfamiliar, Buckley, who drowned in 1997 at the age of 30, recorded only one studio album: "Grace." Not a hit when released, it has since acquired a cult following, even making it onto Rolling Stone's list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. At some point, you may have heard Buckley's cover of the Leonard Cohen classic "Hallelujah."
On the Jeff Buckley: The Record Collection site, visitors can browse through shelves that hold Buckley's more than 300 records. Mouse over a record's spine, and you get information on that album, including 30-second song previews.
You'll find everything from Jimi Hendrix to Philip Glass to Guided by Voices, with plenty of Bob Dylan, Ella Fitzgerald and Leonard Cohen in between. There's even an Edith Piaf compilation in there. The collection also includes a recently released set of Buckley's 1993 studio recordings of cover songs, called "You and I."
If you like something you hear, you can go directly to Spotify to listen to a full-length version, and you can share the selection on social media.
The project came about when Tom Mullen, director of digital marketing at Legacy Recordings/Sony Music, thought to go to the source of those cover songs: Buckley's records. It turned out Buckley's mother had photos of his vinyl and CDs to use as reference.
"He was a music fiend. And that was your currency: your record collection," Mullen said.
For fans, Buckley's career -- and life, of course -- ended much too soon. Now they can get a little more insight into the musician.