Paste’s 17 Coolest Record Stores In America

Sadly, Record Store Day doesn’t last forever, so it’s good getting periodic reminders about the importance of these spaces. In that spirit, the July issue of Paste, the one with MMJ on the cover, includes an article on “the 17 Coolest Record Stores in America.” This is how it’s framed:

People are no longer leaving their houses. They are content to wirelessly import digital music straight into nano-engineered storage devices implanted in their grey matter, and the digital revolution is killing brick-and-mortar retail. But, to paraphrase Mark Twain, rumors of the record store’s death have been greatly exaggerated. Just as people of faith need houses of worship in which to commune, music zealots are no less dependent on shrines dedicated to their own decibel-cranked passion. For that reason, Paste hereby celebrates the record store, bestowing superlatives on a few of America’s finest. May they live long and loud!

Agreed, though let me start off by complaining that the Princeton Record Exchange didn’t make it. Rip-off. But 17 other stores did. The list is in no particular order. And, yes, that’s Steven Seagal.

  • Amoeba Records, Los Angeles, CA
  • Criminal Records, Atlanta, GA
  • Other Music, New York City
  • Cat Head Delta Blues & Folk Art, Clarksdale, MS
  • Waterloo Records, Austin, TX
  • Aquarius Records, San Francisco, CA
  • Dusty Groove America, Chicago, IL
  • Ernest Tubb Record Shop, Nashville, TN
  • Shangri-La Records, Memphis, TN
  • Music Millennium, Portland, OR
  • Ear X-Tacy, Louisville, KY
  • Louisiana Music Factory, New Orleans, LA
  • Newbury Comics, Boston, MA
  • Grimey’s New + Pre-Loved Music, Nashville, TN
  • Turntable Lab, New York City
  • The Electric Fetus, Minneapolis, MN
  • Jerry’s Records, Pittsburgh, PA

Shangri-La is such a great place Steven Seagal’s business couldn’t keep it off the list. Glad to see Aquarius on it, too. I’d also add Hospital (which is having a grand reopening soon) in New York City. While talking specialty stores: Metal Haven, Chicago. Also, Philadelphia Record Exchange. I’m sure you can think of others. If not, Metallica can. Read the complete Paste article here.

[Seagal photo via Shangri-La Records’ MySpace]