In rotation: 1/3/19

Harrisburg, PA | Mr. Mike’s record shop closes after 33 years of business: It’s the end of an era for a popular Dauphin County record shop. Mr. Mike’s Discount Records is closing it’s doors Saturday (12/28) after 33 years of business. The store spent several years in Steelton before moving a few doors down to Harrisburg in 2016. Mr. Mike himself says, while he’s sad to see his store close, it’s been an amazing run. “It’s very emotional, like I said. People said I made a lot of money here, but I made enough to pay the bills and put my kids through school, I’m very fortunate,” he said. “But the thing I’m most appreciative of is the people I met. Nothing can replace the the people I met, especially this last day–this will live with me forever.” Mr. Mike says his future plans include taking it easy for a while and listening to music.

Belfast, IE | Sadness as days of browsing record racks over as Belfast stores vanish: As Belfast looks set to lose its only remaining commercial record store, three Northern Ireland music professionals have spoken of their sadness. They said the void on the high street will take the fun out of discovering new music. BBC radio DJ Ralph McLean described HMV’s administration warning as a “sad day”. “I never had a great love of HMV but to see Belfast lose its last commercial music store would be a significant and sad moment,” he said. “Music will never die, but the way we ingest it is different. People prefer to stream music because even downloading seems too much of an investment, but without that investment how can you feel you can have anything out of music?” “I spent a lot of my childhood digging through the racks in music shops. That’s how I got my passion and became who I am, by going to Caroline Music and It Records in Lisburn, where I met friends and pondered over what purchases to make.

UK | HMV Could Be Closing Down & Here’s Why I’ll Miss The Magical World Of Music Behind Its Doors: …A galaxy of possibilities unfolded before me — music that I’d equally become obsessed with, music that I’d despise, music that would help me through my hardest times, and soundtrack my happiest. I feel like l’ve always been the musical Matilda. While she went to the library, I went to HMV; scouring the aisles hungrily, reading through the credits and the line notes and gawking at the album art before taking home my next “Wuthering Heights.” When I became older, edgier, and nicher — somewhere in my adolescence, of course — I’d go to the independent record stores. I came to experience what maybe every female audiophile can attest to — men really, really like to bend your ear about music. If you’re a woman stepping into a record store, you’re basically mansplainer bait.

UK | If HMV closes forever, young music fans won’t know the joy of browsing in a record store. HMV has gone into administration for the second time in six years as the music industry changes. I got a turntable for Christmas, an unexpected and welcome gift. Not one of those retro portables from Urban Outfitters that every teenage girl has in their bedroom but a sleeker, black-and-chrome number bought by my daughters from HMV. There was something poignant about them going there to buy it – and that was before news of the chain’s second sad move into administration in six years. Removing the vinyl of Soft Cell’s Non-Stop Erotic Cabaret from its cover for the first time in three decades, I noticed the slogan on the inner sleeve beneath a skull and crossbones and a diagram of an audio cassette: “Home-taping is killing music”. If only we knew then what a minor teacup taping was ahead of the imminent digital storm. HMV’s travails appear inevitable. It is hard to see what a potential buyer can do to save all 125 branches and 2,200 jobs.

New York, NY | Bleecker Bob, the Village’s ornery record king: There are a handful of records for which I remember where I was the first time I heard them as vividly as I recall where I was on 9/11, albeit with more pleasure. Jimi Hendrix’s “Purple Haze,” watching the BBC’s “Top of the Pops” show as a seventh grader in Edinburgh. The Patti Smith Group’s “Horses,” in a dorm room at Stony Brook University. And the Sex Pistols’ “Anarchy in the U.K.,” a British-import 45 I bought for $3 at Bleecker Bob’s on Macdougal St. on a cold leaden-skied day in 1976, and spun obsessively in my Brooklyn apartment. The store’s last location, at 118 W. Third St., closed in 2013. Its owner Bleecker Bob, born Robert Plotnik, died Nov. 29 at the age of 75. He was the irascible potentate of the scene of record collectors and rock obsessives who perused its bins for obscure ’60s garage-band discs, bootleg LPs of unreleased Bob Dylan songs and live Patti Smith shows, and the latest imports from the British punk and post-punk scenes.

Costa Mesa, CA | In vinyl we trust: 3 top spots for records in Costa Mesa: Looking to score vinyl records? Hoodline crunched the numbers to find the top record spots in Costa Mesa, using both Yelp data and our own secret sauce to produce a ranked list of the best spots to venture next time you’re in the market for vinyl records…Topping the list is Port Of Sound Record Shoppe. Located at 1500 Adams Ave., Suite 104B, this is the highest rated vinyl record spot in Costa Mesa, boasting 4.5 stars out of 160 reviews on Yelp. Established in 2011, the popular shop offers an extensive selection of vinyl records from a range of genres, including jazz, rock, indie and the classics. (You can check out the online shop here.) “Port of Sound stocks mostly new vinyl albums, so this is not the place to go if you want to search through bins and bins of used vinyl,” shared Yelper Matthew N. “Although, there are some really nice rare albums on the walls.”

Miami, FL | From Peaches to Hustler: The Past and Present of 1500 Sunrise Boulevard: Splashed across the sidewalk outside Hustler Hollywood is a long row of handprints and footprints in swaths of worn cement. A closer look reveals names belonging to visionaries. Iconic musicians such as Rick Springfield, Charlie Daniels, Peter Frampton, ZZ Top, Ted Nugent, and Jaco Pastorius have all left their mark on the stretch of pavement outside a store that now sells sex toys. This spot was once occupied by a never-ending stream of South Florida’s music lovers. Perpetually packed, Peaches Records & Tapes welcomed esteemed artists and audiences alike. The Fort Lauderdale record shop stood out as one of the most successful branches in a chain of 50 stores in 23 states. It was also the last Peaches standing, before the store’s closing in 2001. When the shop opened in 1975, Greg Goode was one of the first employees hired. He recounts an array of celebrities who dropped in to make appearances or buy tracks. Among the highlights were hanging with ZZ Top and encountering Jimmy Buffett.

Northampton, MA | A search for the obscure: Dino Proserpio has always been an avid collector of vinyl records. The pursuit of the rare find and zeal for sharing his passion motivates his life and his record dealing business — and that’s what brought him to Northampton on Saturday. Proserpio attended the fall 2018 Northampton Record Fair, which took place Saturday at the World War II Club on Conz Street. “I think there’s a human element of a physical, tangible connection to the past,” Proserpio said. “I think it’s very easy to understand that human beings want a tangible connection to something.” Proserpio’s business, which does not have a traditional brick-and-mortar storefront, exists almost entirely on the internet. Occasionally the Westchester, New York, resident travels to events where he can sell records and meet other sellers, including Saturday’s event in Northampton. Standing over multiple tables filled with boxes of music ranging from unopened records from the ‘60s to ‘80s new wave and metal, Prosperio explained that he wasn’t surprised vinyl records were making a comeback.

Liverpool, GB | Liverpool opens first vinyl pressing plant in 30 years: Part of plans to expand the Jacaranda venue. For 60 years, The Jacaranda, or The Jac as it’s known to locals, has been a popular Liverpool institution, providing a platform for upcoming musicians. Founded by Allan Williams as a coffee bar in 1958, the Slater Street club famously played early host to The Beatles, who rehearsed and performed there back when they were called The Silver Beetles. The Jacaranda’s status as a creative hotbed was enhanced when it reopened in 2014 following extensive renovation. It now encompasses a live venue, rehearsal space, record label and vinyl store, with free rehearsal spaces for live acts (just like Williams offered The Beatles), open mic nights and record listening booths. Now it has plans to expand with a new label and record pressing plant.

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