Rough Trade Closing Current Brooklyn Location
Rough Trade NYC, the Brooklyn record store that opened to much fanfare in 2013, is closing its current location and moving somewhere else. The 10,000 square foot ex-warehouse building between Kent and Wythe on North 9th Street in Williamsburg will shutters its doors in the spring, and the plan is to open a new store in another yet-to-be-announced location in the city later this summer.
Rough Trade NYC’s concert venue, operated in partnership with The Bowery Presents, is also closing. All future shows have been cancelled, and ticketholders will receive an automatic refund from AXS. It’s unclear if the new store location will also feature a venue or if the days of Rough Trade shows in New York are over. Stephen Godfroy, Rough Trade co-owner, has shared the following statement:
Our much-loved Williamsburg store has done us proud in helping establish Rough Trade as a New York-worthy music retail and gig destination, serving the city’s music lovers and the wider music artist community with expertise, creativity and passion.
Not only has it helped put us (Rough Trade, originally founded in London back in 1976) on the map here in New York, it’s also proven the relevancy and importance of record shops to a whole new generation of music fan — showing that alongside the merits of streaming, there’s also a time and place for hanging out in an inspiring space that celebrates past, present and emerging music culture, one that offers a kaleidoscopic array of recordings to cherish and own, a place to meet other curious minds that helps establish a life-affirming sense of belonging, community and friendship.
As with many businesses right now, the impact of the pandemic has made us rethink our approach, giving us the opportunity to reconsider how best to serve the rapidly increasing number of vinyl lovers in New York — that in spite of the adverse conditions surrounding the pandemic, demand for vinyl is positively booming. As with so many other retail sectors, sales are diverting online, along with the power and reach of online communities, all of which gives us inspiration to become more and not less accessible, to creatively reassess the junction between online and offline interaction. Regretfully, in order for us to freely respond to these new opportunities, we shall have to bid a heartfelt and fond farewell to our beloved, inaugural US, Williamsburg premises.
Having the confidence to relocate and reimagine would not be possible if it weren’t for the warm embrace New York has given us, a city where a love for music inspiringly brings people together and breaks down cultural divides. On behalf of everyone at Rough Trade and The Bowery Presents, we humbly extend our immense and sincere gratitude to all our music loving patrons. Rest assured, Rough Trade will retain its presence in New York — we look forward to sharing details of our exciting new plans in coming months. In the meantime, we look forward to welcoming first time and returning customers to our Williamsburg store, along with all of those enjoying the convenience of shopping at Rough Trade dotcom.
The online storefront will continue to function without interruption while the in-person store is closed. Rough Trade is also inviting New Yorkers to fill out New York Loves Music, an online questionnaire about their relationship to music and music services in the city; the findings from that survey will be published later this year.