Not to get too melodramatic about it, but Other Music closed a year and two days ago. You may remember I wrote about it here and here. Its closing emphatically pounded a nail into the coffin of Manhattan’s once-thriving network of independent music shops. A paltry few remain (Generation Records, Academy, Record Runner and Downtown Music Gallery, to name my personal favorites), but the loss of Other Music was a real body-blow, given its lovingly curated stock and authoritative staff. It wasn’t just a spot to purchase goods, it was a place to hang out, browse, discover, discuss and experience.
Regardless, because, of course, everything sucks now, Other Music was pushed off its perch. The space it occupied (above as of last August) has remained dormant ever since, although I believe I recently saw some activity therein. I shudder to think what venture will take its place.
In any case, for those of us, like myself, who mourn the loss of Other Music, a very optimistic congregation of filmmakers who call themselves Production Company Productions is looking to raise a whopping $70, 000.00 for the purposes of making the definitive documentary about the lost shop and its significance to New York City’s community of slavish music geeks.
If you click on over to their Kickstarter page, you’ll see a nice trailer, featuring appropriate luminaries waxing rhapsodic about Other Music like Daniel Kessler of Interpol ... which is slightly odd being that he worked at the comparatively unsung Route 66 Records before hitting the big time. Personally speaking, I’m a little wary of establishing a connection between Other Music and the generation of new millennial indie bands like the Strokes, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Interpol (currently being lionized in Lizzie Goodman's "Meet Me in the Bathroom"). I mean, sure, those bands and their contemporaries were certainly a part of Other Music, but the shop also offered so much more than stuff like that. I certainly wasn’t going in there looking for Animal Collective records, and I was in there several times a damn week.
I first heard about this, however, by my curmudgeonly metalhead friend Phil (he of Burning Ambulance, and the gent that drafted me last year to write about the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion). While I do miss Other Music, Phil does raise a valid point, in his own acidic way.
You know what America really needs right now, while we're in literally life-threatening crisis mode on multiple fronts? Another fucking documentary about a fucking record store. Donate today!