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Noteworthy Photography

  • Burning Flags Press
    The website of Glen E. Friedman. Renowned for both his work with musicians like Fugazi, Minor Threat, Public Enemy, the Beastie Boys, Slayer (and many, many more) as well as his groundbreaking documentation of the burgeoning skateboard phenomenon in the late `70's, Glen has been privvy to (and has summarily captured on film) some of the coolest stuff ever. He's also an incredibly insightful and nice guy to boot.
  • SoHo Blues - Photography by Allan Tannenbaum
    Allan Tannenbaum is a local photographer who has been everywhere and shot everything, from members of Blondie hanging out at the Mudd Club through the collapsing towers of the World Trade Center on September 11th. You could spend hours on this site, and I have.
  • Robert Otter Photographs
    Amazing vintage photographs of New York City, specifically my own neighborhood, Greenwich Village.
  • oboylephoto
    Just some intensely cool photographs of abandoned places.
  • Rikki Ercoli's Legends of Punk
    Much like Glen E. Friedman (see above), Rikki Ercoli has managed to catch some amazing bands in their manic element.
  • Lost & Found Film
    A fascinating website devoted to undeveloped film found in vintage camers. A curious mixture of interesting and spooky.
  • Pinhole Photography by Veronica Saddler
    NYC landmarks shot through a pinhole lens. Neat-o.
  • Eugene Merinov
    Compelling shots of Punk, Post-Punk and New Wave band performing live in various long-lost venues in a pre-sanitized New York City. Great stuff!
  • Edward Colver

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August 09, 2013

Comments

Kevinkray

St. Marks Sounds

Megan O'Connor

I remember all of these. It's Jammyland that I miss...mostly because I worked there. We would occasionally mock (with affection) Dance Trax which was just down the block.

John Stavrianos

seconding St. Marks sounds!

Ivan

I grew up in Jackson Heights, so for me it was Numbers Records and Tapes. I was a metal head, but I remember looking at the Sonic Youth records in the "indie" section. I wish I would have gotten into them back then (the '80s).

Brian Prager

Midnight Records on 23rd Street.

Al Quaglieri

This is wonderful, nice work. I'd have bought a lot more from Future Legend, but they only accepted cash.

zev

Downstairs Records - when they were in the subway @ 6th & 43rd st exit.

Zig Zag - Ave U in Brooklyn, also the short lived UES location was cool.

Titus Oaks.

Is Other Music still there?

Both branches of Sounds + Kims = empty wallet, usually.

Also fun to hang out at:
J&R Music - when Tim Warren worked there.
King Carol - on 42 st around the time Jahn Xavier worked there

FBC!

I think Ear Wax still exists in Williamsburg, but they moved. Been there a few times when they were on Bedford avenue, totally hated it (lots of CDs, not enough vinyl, too much attitude).

tom

somewhere on E7th st. there was a second hand record shop I knew as Max's. I bought a copy of red vinyl "Nazz Nazz" there. Max said "Wait a minute, that's rare" So I paid $3 for it...

Ol Yella

Anyone else remember Space Age Bachelor Pad on E. 10th?

Jason

st marks sounds is still there

conortv

Nice post! Enlightening. I only lived in New York from 2001-2010 so a lot of these places are foreign to me. What about Kim's on St. Mark's Place? That was my go-to spot along with Virgin Megastore Union Square.

Steve Holtje

Ear Wax closed the Bedford Ave. store in June or July this year but merely moved four blocks away, to North 9th St. That location is less visible and smaller, so I worry they may not last. Also, they are phasing out CDs and emphasizing vinyl.

Stuart Wexelbaum of Stooz' runs something out of his basement in Williamsburg on North 11th St.

Those of us who cared about classical music more than you (which is setting the bar pretty low) loved Record Hunter.

In the category of places you left out, besides the already mentioned places dear to me (Midnight, Sounds), there was Finyl Vinyl, Second Ave. in the Village if memory serves, and Sam Goody's, various locations, with their weird system of letters on the LPs with a big sign hanging from the ceiling that translated those letters into prices.

What was the name of the overpriced collectors LPs store across the street from Second Coming? Hated them, but couldn't resist some of the rarities.

Mikey Chlanda

I used to work at Second Coming, maybe a year or two after Andre opened. I was his 3rd employee...worked there about year or two off and on during college. His wife Gladys was a sweetheart. That tattooed guy must have been after my time. i have a story about his bootlegging...but that will have to wait for a pm or a later private comment :-)

BabyDave

I will always fondly remember the Musical Maze on Third Avenue just south of 23rd Street. There was a counter in the back called the Singles Bar, and it had all the latest, especially British stuff. I remember buying a version of “Wild in the Streets” by a band called the British Lions. It took me a listen or two to realize it didn’t hold a candle to the Garland Jeffreys original. Also, it’s where I bought the “No New York” album, no doubt influenced by the fact that the fellow behind the counter, George, played for the Contortions.

Earlier, E.J. Korvette’s at 34th Street and Sixth Avenue often had the cheapest prices around, offering Billboard’s Top 10 practically as loss-leaders. I got “There Goes Rhymin’ Simon” there, and a double album called something like “Chuck Berry: 20 Golden Hits.”

P.S. That photo of the Record Hunter alongside Brew and Burger is awesome. A little fuzzy, but awesome.

Peter Freeman

I remember a lot of those places but had little love for them other than that they were places I could buy stuff I couldn't find anywhere else. They tended to employ guys with unwarranted, unpleasant attitude.

But I did LOVE Tower records on B'way. Everything about it. The smell of newness of it. The yellow bags. The great big windows. All the different sections. It was an exciting place that knew how to display records, so you just wanted to buy, buy, buy. I spent a lot of my life there in the 80s and a lot of my money and don't regret a dime or a second of it. There was an annex a block further back and a discount store as well. Loved them all and love the memory of them. Always will.

The 66th St store was never as good but was still a great place.

The Los Angeles Tower on Sunset was an LA landmark and sold great discount albums for $4.99.

Alyssa

Met my husband when we were both working at the Lincoln Center Tower Records in the late 1980s, and I bought my first-ever-purchased-on-my-own record at that Woolworth's, the Xanadu soundtrack, for the obscenely high price of $9.95.

zaba

For the photos you can't cite, you might be able to right-click on them and find some information about the photographer from the metadata or EXIF data.

Unrelated, but thought you might want to know: The LCD Soundsystems documentary "Shut Up and Play the Hits" is now on Netflix.

I watched it once solely on your recommendation from a post of yours a while back, not realizing I knew quite a few of the songs. Had to watch it again about two days later because I enjoyed it so much. Still haven't removed it from my Instant Queue, because I have a hunch I will be watching it again.

G

Who remembers when Rocks In Your Head used to serve ice cream in the back & show movies on a vcr/small tv? I do! I saw the Clash's Rude Boy there.

I too have many personal memories tied up with a lot of the places on this list...

I had a band in the 80's with Paul & Greta from Future Legend, in fact I went to High School with both of them too (even Jr. High w/Paul!), and I didn't know that they had a record store until about a week before they closed. Tried calling up there when I found out & the phone had already been turned off. Damn.

G

And oh yeah--I second zev's call:

TITUS OAKS

That was the church, for me.
That's been gone for YEARS, and it still hurts.

Jonathan Hertzberg

For soundtrack aficionados near and far, Footlight was the place.

You can catch a glimpse of one of the King Karol locations, perhaps it's the 42nd St. one, in BADGE 373.

I was too young to have frequented it, but anyone remember Record City, which appears in 1981's THE FAN starring Lauren Bacall and Michael Biehn (Biehn's character works in the shop)?

Sammy

Also Norman's Sound and Vision and Wowsville.

Peter Holsapple

BabyDave, I worked at Musical Maze on 23rd Street and 3rd Avenue, then eventually Record Factory. The Maze was a wonderful place. We sold a lot of records to SVA students who grabbed their new NMEs and came looking for the newest stuff--sometimes we even had it. The singles section was called Single City and even had the name up over the shelves. The building's water heater was downstairs, and the super had painted it up to look like King Tut's sarcophagus. There were a number of reasons the Maze went down, but the crowning blow was the high-end call girl operation called the Cookie Jar that was going on upstairs. Unfortunately, every picture you saw just had Musical Maze's storefront in it. To Burt, Jan, Martin, George, Eric, Ed, Steve and all who staffed the store--thanks for the memories!

jim Sharpe

Does anyone remember Soho Music Gallery?

RP

I shopped in most of these above mentioned stores, great list. I would say though that you sold Stooz a little short, I bought a bunch of cool funk soul and jazz LPs there.

Lello Boscoverde

Awesome post, dude.

What about the Kim's'es? Kim's West, which closed, miraculously reopened, and then closed less than a month later. Kim's Underground, which turned its music section into the porn section before closing. Kim's Mondo, of course. (Or Mondo Kim's?)

Or Temple (on 9th). Or Gimme Gimme (on 5th).

Daniel Morris

Norman's Sound And Vision is now on Metropolitan in Williamsburg. The North 6th St Academy Annex is soon moving to Greenpoint.

Alex Belth

What about King Caroll on the west side near the Port Authority? I remember buying Cosby's "Wonderfulness" and Carlin's "Toledo Window Box" there.

Funktual

No mention of the amazing Tropicalia in Furs. Joel was a NYC institution.

BabyDave

Peter Holsapple: I stand corrected about the Single City/Singles Bar mix-up. Didn’t know about the Cookie Jar operation, though. Thanks for sharing the history.

BabyDave

Peter H: I stand corrected about my Singles Bar/Single City mix-up. And I never knew (honest) about the Cookie Jar situation. Thanks for the history.

Michael

I would like to note how amazing some of the help at Tower Records (West 4th) could be. One day in my youth I approached the guy manning the jazz section. Fearfully, I said "I need to learn Coltrane. I'm a rock n roll Hendrix head, know nothing about jazz, but it comes to me that I need to learn Coltrane. Can you help me?" He went on for 20 solid minutes before handing me Ballads, A Love Supreme, listening instructions, as well as an order to return to the store in a month, to discuss. Which I did.

Jennifer

I bought a LOT of stuff at Record Runner in the west village. I assume it's not there anymore but I honestly don't know for sure as I live in the EV and am rarely in the west village. There also used to be a little outlet store with used CDs on St Marks at the top of a set of stairs. I forgot it's name but there is a Karaoke bar there now. So many hours spent at Tower on E 4th St. I miss them all!!

St Mark

Don't forget Norman's, Gimme Gimme, Venus in Furs in the East Village....all gone...

- East Villager

Jeremy Shatan

Great rundown...I gave money and time to most, if not all, of these shops. I could add the Woolworth's on Columbus in the 90's. I know I bought Jimmy Page's Death Wish II soundtrack there, as well as Queen's Another One Bites The Dust 7".

Jeff Jotz

Imagine if I didn't spend my formative years - and those paychecks - at those establishments (Bleeker Bob's and Second Coming, in particular). I would have had money for a nicer house and my son's college fund.

Legitimate Golf

I miss the Tower and the USQ Virgin store. To think there were actually times where, bored, I'd just head on over to one of these places and just fucking browse. That seems like a lifetime ago. Man, I've said it a hundred times before but music was so much better when there was a whole process to acquiring it. I came up just at the tail end of the CD era but I'm grateful to have been a part of it. The advent of digital downloading has pretty much lobotomized our collective music mind. Some of my best times in college were born out of trips to used CD shops--back in the 90s you could find *all* sorts of good stuff, new and old in those racks.

Fallopia Tuba

Fuck, I miss them all…I'm old.

Supposedly, Bleecker Bob's is looking to come back on the Lower East Side; I hope that's true. (Chris, the general manager, told me that.)

Psychatrone Rhonedakk

Gawd! It's sick to see all the great places that are gone. Is Kim's still stocking Lps and CDs??

This makes me so sad....

Noah

There was a record store in Brooklyn in the late sixties/early seventies called "Jamie's" (I am not sure I am spelling it right). It was on Flatbush Avenue near ERasmus Hall High School. Theire policy was any two records for $5.95. It was insane. I bought tons of records there, including "An Evening With Wild Man Fischer".

Greg Kline

Revolver Records and It's Only Rock & Roll, both on 8th St. Records Revisited, Infinite, Farfels, Record Runner, House Of Oldies, Golden Disc, Generations, and the place Broadway Al opened when he split from Bleecker Bobs. All in the village in Manhattan.

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