buy music!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Records and Record Stores

Matt Pendleton and Amy "Gore Gore Girl" Surdu at the Ponderosa Stomp Record Fair

Now I think we are all record collecting geeks. I worked in a record store when I was 17 - and chances are you did too

While I have been in NYC, I have been spending about 80% of my time in a record store, hanging out and listening to records.

memphis mike

This guy is Memphis Mike and he operates Pass Out Record Shop in Brooklyn and his 20-something super clerk and psych music guru, Chris Teenager keeps me very happy with the musical selections he plays during the day. For those of you who don't know who Memphis Mike is --- he was in a legendary and mysterious hardcore-punk band called Man With Gun. Their record is hard to find and if you do find it, just buy it!

chris teenager

Record collecting has always been a competitive sport, but for me it reached new heights with the motion picture, Diner. One of the characters gave his fiancee a test about his record collection as the final step in the pre-nuptial gauntlet. People take this VERY SERIOUSLY.

Way back when, during the punk heyday, I only ever bought one copy of the singles my friends made. What a mistake! I understand some of the records I own and cherish, and would never part with, by the way, are worth some pretty pennies on eBay.... that's not even talking about the ones where I shot the covers!

Speaking of which... here are a couple:

My Pandoras Picture Sleeve

I think I won a place in many a garage rock record collector's heart with these seven-inch-sleeves... chicks in bikinis and va va va voom ladies with guns are a staple image.

I include the Huey Lewis record cover here just to say that back in the 70's and 80s (this was taken in 1980 backstage at the Whisky A Go Go), it just seemed like many things were possible...including a punk rock chick getting a photo of a classic rock band on their greatest hits album covers.

One record store that I enjoy shopping in and ordering from is Goner in Memphis. Eric Oblivian runs the store in the location that previously housed Greg Oblivian's store, Legba Records. They have all the great punk and garage records that you can't find in the "normal" outlets (as does Passout), supporting the bands rather than the "industry."

Here's Matt Williams of the Baseball Furies, Live Fast Die (sometimes), Hot Machines and what ever cool Chicago band calls on him to beat on a drum - in the Goner store with Eric in the background.

Matt Williams and Eric Friedl

The small indie record store is fading fast... even though a new one pops up every month, in the same breath, every month, some greedy landlord is trying to shut another one down. So ... buy your records from these indies. If you can't do that, then buy your records from the band at gigs. HMV, Virgin and all the megastores are doing quite alright without you.


Anonymous said...

or a hurricane shuts them down....

Kenny said...

Great pictures! I swear I find a new blog to skulk compulsively at least every day.

Quick question: in the flick Diner, I thought Eddie's pre-nup quiz was on the Colts, and that Shrevie was the one obsessed with music, the one who got into a huge fight with his wife because he organized his records by genre and then alphabetically by last name?

Yeah, some people are passionate about music. Others have photography. Me? I ruminate on trivial factoids from early-80s movies featuring Steve Guttenberg.