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The lick-on label was unmistakable. Paul Campfield was reading his mother's name and the address of his childhood San Lorenzo home
And it meant the old records he picked up for $2 at a Sutter Creek antique shop had once belonged to her, although she died in Redding in 1979.
The 68-year-old Sacramento man never knew what came of his record collection owned by his mother, May O. Rainey. He simply remembered how they fit into slots in a compartment beneath the oak RCA Victor console with the automatic turntable.
"It's just a thrill, a genuine thrill," said Campfield, a retired engineering technician. "I think my mother is still with me."
Campfield has thought of his mother regularly these last 30 years. She pops into his head when he hears certain songs, dances the waltz, or eats a chocolate divinity.
He bought an old-style record player from JC Penney a few years back, and earlier this summer, popped into Old Hotel Antiques where he picked up a dozen vinyl 45s.
This week, he pulled them out of the clear plastic bag and that's when he noticed his mother's block-lettered address label on "That is Rock and Roll" by the Coasters. It was on the Freddy Cannon record, and the Elvis Presley one, too. It looked like there once were labels on the Lloyd Price, Alvin Tyler and Fats Domino records as well.
"There's a reason for this," Campfield said. "I don't really believe in ghosts, but who knows."