San Francisco is striving to preserve music stores that are dwindling in numbers. The growing number of online stores and their ability to offer high discounts have curbed their sales. Many international music stores, have fallen prey to sky rocketing rental price and heavy competition from internet Privacy. A few famous music stores of San Francisco that shut shop over the past few years are Rasputin Music, Tower Records and Discolandia.
San Francisco has come up with a lot of innovative initiatives in order to save the brick & mortar music shops from vanishing. One such event is the ‘Record Store Day’ (since 2008), strictly dedicated to saving independent music stores that have a minimum of 70% of its ownership located in the place of operation. It offers a platform for the staffs, customers and artists to meet each other. The celebrations include performance, DJ record spinning, parades and music release.
In spite the competition few music stores still remain in San Francisco that have a long list of loyal customers who keep them up and running
One of the world’s biggest independent music store that offers around one million new, as well as used vinyl records, audio tapes and CDs. Its versatile collection of diverse music genres like jazz, rock, classical, and hip hop has made the store gain the popularity, it is basking on.
It is one of the oldest music stores of San Francisco. It has an enormous collection of music and popular for the variety they offer in rock music like blues, Latin, hip-hop, folk etc. The collection is un-imaginable. Though not remarkably large in space the store is very well known for its archive of new/recent releases. They also include local music bands and DIY artists. Aquarius Records were listed third, among the stores to be visited before one’s death.
It first opened in North Beach (1997), is best known for its assorted collections of rare music records.
They have 2 outlets in San Francisco. Their product line has everything a music enthusiast might look for. The store’s collection includes vinyl records, audio tapes, CDs and music instruments. Their collection of guitar is of a particular interest to many.
A long time resident of the popular music destination, Explorist International came into existence because ‘The Explorist’, understood the need for more independent music store in San Francisco. They are unique as they concentrate on bringing forward those records that are usually found on the back section. Their focus is on vintage and experimental music, mostly liked by the modern music lovers. They also conduct promotional events within the store, to draw the attention.
The owner, ‘Cool Chris’, is known to have the coolest vinyl records ever. It is interesting to know they started out as a section within the premises of Rooky Ricardo’s Records another popular store in San Francisco.
The other stores that are still holding onto the competition are Originals Vinyl, Vinyl Dreams, Jack’s Record Cellar and Grooves Inspiralled Vinyl.
Photo courtesy of David Wilson – Creative Commons – Flickr