Ghosts of Record Stores Past and Present

Much of my youth was spent hunting for and playing vinyl. I have created this site to remember many of the stores I've visited. Don't try and visit them without calling first, as many of them are no longer with us. If I've posted a picture of a store that you want me to delete please let me know and I'll take it down. To see a particular store just open the photo album with its name on it or click on the green (open) or red (closed) marker in the map below. Expanding the map will reveal more stores in the same city.

The site also contains links to interesting articles and information on record shops and record collecting and fine musical suggestions and playlists for your listening pleasure (with You Tube links so you can check them out for yourself). The Playlists can be found by scrolling to a separate section of the index under the heading musical resources. And our latest addition, Song of the Day, a glimpse at what's playing on my stereo today, appears there as well.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Record Exchange

Record Exchange -  8642 Colesville Rd., Silver Spring Md. 20910  (Washington D.C.)

Nice store run by a nice guy.  This is one of their two locations (the other is in Frederick) and a bit on the smaller side.  But their record divider -  "Budget Vinyl - The Thrill of the Hunt" is priceless.  In all my travels, I've never seen anyone use that one before.  And no, that's not a picture of a Cramps record I bought at the store, but artwork the store commissioned from the very same artist.  Worthy of a visit for the floor alone.

Friday, September 30, 2016

Joe's Record Paradise

Joe's Record Paradise

Open -  8700 Georgia Ave., Silver Springs Md  20910
(just outside of Washington D.C., which you can reach by Metro)

On a recent trip to Washington D.C., I payed a visit to the new home of Joe's Record Paradise.
The store recently reopened in the basement of an office building at 8700 Georgia Ave., and as you can see from the pictures below, is full of used records of all genres.  They were sampling some tasty old soul/blues while I was there.

Here are some photos of their prior location, which (on the inside) was painted a lovely fuscia.

Here's a recent article from the Washington Post At Joe's Record Paradise The Music Goes Round and Round that describes the store's latest move.  It features a picture of the store's current owner, Johnson Lee, son of the original Joe, Joe Lee.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Song Of The Day

Isaac Gracie - Last Words

Today's Song of the Day is Isaac Gracie - Last Words.  If you are reading this blog, then you are likely to do what I do, which is listen to and search endlessly for new music to listen to - as one record store artfully said the thrill of the hunt.  Well, if you do, this is one of the songs you are thrilled to discover when you stumble upon it, a near perfect folk song that reminds me of Bon Iver's Flume or maybe Tim Buckley Song For Janie. It is reported that Isaac Gracie recorded this on Garageband. It's on an EP Songs From My Bedroom released in 2016. Recorded as a 21 year old from England.

For good measure, here is Tim Buckley's Song for Janie from 1966.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Song Of The Day

Love - Alone Again Or

Today's Song of the Day is Alone Again Or from Love's classic 1967 album Forever Changes.  One of the great underappreciated albums of the 60s, its a 5 star record on All Music, and 40 on Rolling Stone's 2003 list of the top 500 albums of all time.

This is a mixture of folk and psych, with a haunting mariachi trumpet and strings thrown in.  This is the last record made by the band's original lineup, a bi-racial group lead by Arthur Lee, guitarist Bryan MacLean, who wrote this song, Johnny Echols on lead guitar, Ken Forssi on bass and Michael Stuart on drums.

The album is highly recommended, and features a number of great songs.

The song has been covered a number of times, including by Calexico in 2004, and the Damned in 1987.

I've also included the band's appearance on the Dick Clark show in 1966, doing A Message To Pretty, from their first album.  This is a haunting folk rock balad.

Don't stop here, as there is much to explore on each of the first three albums.  Signed DC, My Little Red Book, She Comes in Colors, Andmoreagain, and A House Is Not A Motel to name a few.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

House of Records

House of Records Eugene Oregon
Open - 258 E. 13th Ave., Eugene Oregon 97401

Once I saw a picture of it on the Internet, I knew I had to go.  A blue house filled with records.  My sister had a wedding (her oldest son) and so we made a slight detour to this Eugene institution, in business since 1971,  Seems Oregon is the land of record stores.  Dig the cool record dividers.  A bit of everything in the store, both new and used. Got a nice copy of the original Belle & Sebastian The Life Pursuit, and a reissue of Of Montreal  The Gay Parade (quite a good record).

House of Records Record Store Eugene Oregon

Here's an interview with store clerks describing the store that appearing in Light in the Attic in 2011.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Song Of The Day

Beck - Where Its At

Today's Song of the Day is from Beck's 1996 masterpiece Odelay.  Where Its At mixes rap with lounge jazz with the able help of the Dust Brothers.  It contains many vocal samples, including two turntables and a microphone, from Mantronix, and others from a sex education album Sex for Teens (Where Its At).  And it won a Grammy to boot, in addition to many other accolades.  But what is better than being called Song of the Day?

And why may you ask do we feature it here?  Because I finally got a vinyl copy of Odelay this weekend.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Rough Trade NYC

Rough Trade Records, 64 N. 9th Street, Willamsburg, Brooklyn New York

Just when you thought the big record store was dead, Rough Trade opened a big (and I do mean big) record store in Brooklyn in November 2013 reminiscent of the since closed Tower, Virgin and the many large record stores of the past.  Quite a large space with quite a large number of records, but only new vinyl here.  They do also host live events.

An article appeared in Gizmodo More Than A Record Shop: Inside Brookyn's Massive New Music Outpost in November 2013 with many additional pictures of the store.

Rough Trade has long operated two stores in England, and once a fine record label (Rough Trade) though I'm not sure of its current ownership (it still is a fine record label).

Some of the bands that appeared on Rough Trade include the Decemberists, Camper van Beethoven, the Libertines, the Strokes, Cornershop and Arcade Fire, to name but a few.