Following on from our recent trip to the States here are two more record stores that we managed to spend some time in.

For the vinyl junkies the first store really needs no introduction, but for those who don’t spend their afternoons day dreaming of trawling through piles and piles of records in a dank basement we’ll fill you in.

The Thing

The Thing is a legendary thrift store located in Green Point, Brooklyn NY. The shop itself is packed with second hand delights from old electronics to the latest in trendy vintage clothing. Head towards the back of the store and you start to see a why this place is so famous amongst record collectors. Stacks and stacks of records piled from floor to ceiling dominate the back of the shop. The guy in the shop was showing us around and said that all of the records at the back of the shop were freshly bought collections, he then pointed around the corner and asked us how much time we had on our hands. We promptly answered that we had a few hours to kill, so we followed him down a set of stairs. The Thing has a huge basement with the most mind boggling amount of records we have ever seen!

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This labyrinth is as chaotic as it looks, the records are in no particular order. The shop clerks question makes sense now.

Here’s some advice if you do ever find yourself at The Thing;

  1. Know what you want to find: Go there with a clear sense of what you want to find as there are so many records to go through that you can get side tracked. It’s very easy to pick up a load of records that you think could be cool but turn out to be pretty bad! They do have a turntable so you can listen to the records before you buy them but the needle was shot so we could barely hear the ones that we picked out.
  2. Take a dust mask: We spent about five hours in the basement and by the end of it we couldn’t wait to get out of there. The dust is so intrusive that after a while down there you feel like you can’t breathe.

For the five hours we spent in the basement (only going through about 1% of the records down there) we barely got much to show from it, we only managed to pick out four records. This place is hard work but there are definitely untouched treasures down there, and at $2 a record if you do find that special disc then getting caked in dust doesn’t seem like such a bad idea.

Here are a couple of records we got from the basement.

CO-OP 87 Records & Tapes

The second stop of the day took us to CO-OP 87 which was only a short walk from The Thing. This small shop was our favourite of the trip in New York, with a well curated collection and the friendliest staff.

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This shop is great if you looking for that classic ‘New York’ sound. With boxes of some of the greatest disco labels to come out of New York, we were like kids in a candy shop. They also sell new records showcasing some of NYC’s newest labels. We managed to find some records that have been sitting in our wishlist on Discogs for a while.

Here’s what we picked up.

 

 

 

The Brooklyn Flea Record Market returned for its ninth anual fair. Set up along the East River you couldn’t ask for a better backdrop than the Manhattan skyline. The Flea market worked in collaboration with the Red Bull Music Academy to bring in over 50 stalls of record labels, shops and independent traders. RBMA also got local label heads to dj their portfolio.

Brooklyn Flea

Brooklyn Flea

There was so much to choose from and you would probably need a couple of days to actually go through all the stalls. I stuck to the second hand dealers and got a few gems. The stall that stood out was run by the guys at Sweat Equity Records, an independent online trader that had stacks and stacks of wax. The pricing wasn’t too bad with most records costing between $2 and $4 although some were going for silly money. Sweat Equity had an abundance of house and disco cuts. Here are a few we picked up.

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The first stop on our digging trip to the United States brought us to Other Music. Opened in the mid 90’s, Other Music specialises in the sale of closely curated underground, rare and experimental music.

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The shop itself isn’t too large and most of their selection was on CD’s but they had a few racks of vinyl that we spent about two hours trawling through. The first section we hit was jazz.

Other Music

Here we picked up three records. The first from Houston Person called ‘Underground Soul!’

The Second is ‘Soul Sound System’ by Wayne Henderson.

And the last jazz record we picked up was ‘The Common Ground’ by Herbie Mann and the Afro Jazz Sextet.

All jazzed out we spotted boxes full of marked down vinyl. There were about 15-20 boxes full of records. They were in no particular order but were full of disco and house classics.

Other Music

Here’s a pick of what we found there.

Unfortunately as is the current trend, Other Music will be closing its doors on July 25th due to decreased sales and the increase of rent. New York will be losing one of its longest running record stores so if your in the area be sure to check it out before it goes.

Other Music

This article is for the sixteen year old store, Egg Records, Newtown, Sydney. A voyage into the depth and quality of sound is possible in this place. A corner of planet earth dedicated to the organisation and sale of exceptional music.

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The store has the west and the east, north and south. Organised A-Z but and with key areas for exploration pulled out and highlighted. You want Moog comps? Or was it BBC FX Albums? Rock & Punk get a big look in at entrance to the palais.

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Specific genres aside, enjoy spending time with a few thousand discs checked, logged and oiled, by the owner, Baz. Keep thriving Baz!

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Ofra Haza – Im Nan’ Alu – 10AUD
Uplifting sounds from Ofra Haza. Lovely chuggy stuff on the remix!


Luna Twist – African Time – 5AUD
Spotted via the screen printed & colourful cover, ‘Luna’ + ‘African’ and then a quick scan on Dutch Wikipedia. Nu-Wave from the continent, big in the UK. Released 1982.

 

I’ve been travelling around SA for a few weeks now but it wasn’t until I arrived in Cali that I realised I hadn’t been to a record shop in one month. Naaaat goooood. Plus, Cali is the capital of Salsa in Colombia, so it was time for a little foray…

First up, Record shops for Salsa classics seem to be hard to come by and/or dying out in Cali. There’s little to no big stores anymore that I could find, so it’s collection based buying from people renting spaces in other shops or as part of a bookstore (librario). These places aren’t really listed anywhere so it’s best to ask around for ‘vinales’ or ‘discos grandes’.  when you find the first place, the dealer will be the best person to ask about the next stop.

Atlas Records, Cl 9 Cr8 (through bookshop and upstairs)

3000 COP – 20000 COP (£1 – £5)

Atlas was the perfect place to start off, because you can listen on their old Phillips turntable and there’s a stool. When you listen the music in the shop goes off, but as long as you’re gonna buy something the dude didn’t seem to mind. The layout was organised but at first a little confusing. Genres span Classic Colombian, through Salsa, Pop/Rock etc. Then there are around 3000 mixed records (mainly comps) on the floor, and two blue crates with the more expensive Salsa cuts. It’s worth mentioning that Salsa records are LP’s. He had a big box of 7’s on the floor but I glossed it as they didn’t have sleeves and most were completely battered.

Grupo Niche – Cali Pachanguero (1984)

The defining Cali Salsa record, from the legendary Grupo Niche. So fun, lively and and basically giving Cali the big up. Plus Cowbell!

Hermanos Lebron – Vente Conmigo (1980)

Smooth lady killing sounds from the Lebron bros. Vente Conmigo = Come With Me… Mama


Name Unknown, Cl 3 Cr 6, San Antonio

4000 COP – 10000 COP (£1 – £3)

This next shop was basically a house with the ground floor converted into a librario, with a lovely woman owner, a dog cat combination and a smallish (200 or so) collection of Salsa. She also had some older Colombian stuff. She was more than happy to help me search for specific artists and came up good with the distinctive Peurto Rican born, NYC livin Angel Canales.

Sabor y Angel Canales – Hace Tiempo (1975)

A tune which deserves the mantle of: no holds barred party banger.

If anyone has tips for digging in Colombia, please leave info in the comments.




We were fortunate enough to be in the wonderful city of Copenhagen, Denmark last weekend and managed to duck out of doing your traditional touristy things for a few hours to visit some record stores.  There are quite a few dotted about the city but public transport is a breeze so if you have the time you can spend a day checking out a chunk of them. We were most looking forward to going to a store called Dorma 21 which specialised in new house and techno from local Scandinavian producers, unfortunately it had closed down recently so we weren’t able to. Even so we did manage to find two great record stores.

Insula Music

Location

Insula Music is a tiny shop located in south KØBENHAVN N with the closest metro station Forum being a 7 minute walk away.

Pricing

20DKK (£2) – 1000DKK (£100)

Selection

Folk, Rock, Afro, Asian, Scandinavian Jazz plus more

Listening

There is one turntable in the shop behind the counter but the owner is more than happy for you to come back and play some records

Vibe

Insula music is a very discrete shop, we only found it because there were boxes of vinyl put out on a table in front of the shop! Its very small with only two racks on either side and one in the centre. Insula sells both new and second hand wax with the owners eclectic and unusual taste in music really shining through in their collection. With that area of Copenhagen inhabited by a large Middle Eastern population there was quite a lot of arabian folk music to choose from. There was also quite a lot of Scandinavian and European Jazz. Most of the records are in great condition and there are definitely a few bargains in there.

 

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Purchases

Sidney Bechet And His Orchestra – 50DKK (£5)

Sly And Robbie – 40DKK (£4)

 

Sound Station

Location

The closest metro to Sound Station again is Forum but this time its a twelve minute walk in the opposite direction. It is in the Frederiksberg area on a main road called Gammel Kongevej.

Pricing

25DKK (£2.50) – 2000DKK (£200)

Selection

A lot !!! Mostly Rock, Jazz, Soul, Folk

Listening

There is one turntable in the shop at the counter that has quite a dodgy connection so listening was testing at times but nothing a wiggle of the wires wouldn’t sort out.

Vibe

Sound Station is a beautiful record store with a massive collection. Its warm wooden decor was very comforting coming in from the cold Copenhagen weather. Each genre takes up a huge amount of space in the shop with floor to ceiling shelves meticulously alphabetised. The guys working there were very accommodating and were more than happy to help point us in the right direction in this otherwise daunting shop. We recommend spending a whole day there as you will need a lot of time to go through just one shelving unit!

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Purchases

Afrique – 150DKK (£15)

Buddy Miles – 25DKK (£2.50)

 

Location
Groove Store is a bright and lovely little shop, accessible via Place De Clichy Metro in the city’s 9th district.

Pricing
€6 – €60

Selection
Funk, Soul, Rock, Blues

Listening
One turntable hooked up to the shop system for everyone to use. Ask at the counter – it’s cool to cut off a tune, just ask whoever put it on… be polite!

Vibe
It’s pretty small, probably room for 8 people comfortably browsing, with a left hand wall of crates offering up Funk & Soul EP’s (and a few LP’s) for €6 a pop. Most of this stuff is either more common or more obscure, and much of it can be found cheaper on Discogs, though it’s well curated and pretty much all NM, so to be honest you may as well save yourself the hassle and pick it up here while you have the chance. While we were in the shop the dude working there was flipping through the bins and pulling out the smoothest obscure & classic tracks alike to play to a Mum and her baby. He wasn’t looking in the storage on the right hand side of the shop.

The right hand side of the shop is taken up with either more easily recognisable names or more expensive, rarer shit which is alphabetised meticulously so that it’s a pleasure to browse. Generally weighing in at between €10 and €20, here’s a chance to score some bargains if you know what you’re looking for or have the time and connectivity to cross reference with Discogs. Most of the records they had are from the late 70’s – late 80’s.

There was also some classic rock from the same era in a couple of boxes at the front of the shop, but Funk and Soul was definitely the plat du jour here.

Purchases
Faze-O – Ridin High – €8

Ozone – Jump On It – €6

The Clark Sisters – You Bought The Sunshine – €6