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The Great Tower Falls – Does the demise of Tower Records signal the end of the Record Store as we know it!?

I remember getting so excited walking up to the ‘ol strip mall knowing that I was going to a wonderland of new music, black light posters, endless rows of rock concert t-shirts, studded wrist bands, smoking paraphernalia, band stickers, the scent of incense in the air, and the latest big rock band blaring over the speakers in every corner of the store.

Walking into a record store was a bombardment of nearly all senses and always created a mood of rebellion, excitement, and wonder. What’s this album sound like? Look! It’s my favorite rock band on a black t-shirt! In fact they’re ALL black t-shirts! Oh MAN, Look who’s coming in concert next month! Who’s that hot metal chick over there looking at Cinderella’s latest record? Who’s this playing over the loudspeakers right now? Check out this pile of free local mag’s and bands promoting their up coming show at the local dive. I think I need some incense to cover up the smell in my room in case I get a girl to come over…HA! Fat chance!

But, these are things I remember and used to get so excited over when I made the trip to the record store. And actually, I just got that feeling again when I walked into Tower Records today. It was great! But I walked in knowing that this is probably one of the last times I ever step foot inside an old school record store and what actually drew me in was the “going out of business” sale. 25-30% off EVERYTHING. Sad. And I’m sure in a few weeks the percentage will go up to 40-50% off until it’s ALL GONE. And then what? Is this a prelude to all brick and mortar music stores going out of business due to iTunes and the proliferation of online music stores such as Amazon?

We’ve seen vinyl turn to tape. Tape turn to CD. Is it now the time for CD’s to turn to Mp3’s? Is this good bye to tangible media, cover art, lining inserts, and “thank you’s” from the band? Will music become what the ATM card is to the paper dollar? We know it’s there, but we can’t SEE it? My gut feeling says it’s bound to happen in our lifetime and that kids of today and tomorrow are going to miss out on the great music experience known as the trip to the record store only to be replaced by “Come over to my house and you can pillage my mp3 collection”.

6 thoughts on “The Great Tower Falls – Does the demise of Tower Records signal the end of the Record Store as we know it!?

  1. Fuck Tower Records, that place sucked. Vinyl was always be the superior media for sound and artistic expression. Long live Amoeba (but fuck that black dude behind the buy/sell counter)

  2. I say let us embrace going over to mahsheets house and pillage his mp3’s. If the word “pillage” ever had an appropriate context it would be in “the dude room.”Tower went down. Virgin Records is going down as well. Remember Specs? Or Peaches? Even back then I always wondered how they stayed open. That’s what makes Amoeba so damn amazing. How depressing is it to go into Sam Goody. Yech.Long live Amoeba (but ultra-fuck that black dude behind the buy/sell counter and his gay-ass butt-plugging jam band–I think that guy needs to get pillaged ASAP)

  3. Does anybody remember Coconuts? Oh yeah, and fuck that black dude at Amoeba one more time! Ultra rare copy of Silent way featuring 4-way fold out gatefold, miles davis stickers, life size stand up of the man, 750 grams of marble swirl color vinyl,produced in Japan for a limited time, copy #1 of 10. Black dude’s price: Uh, i don’t know we get a lot of these in, I’ll give $1.My response: Thats okay i will just stick this broom up my ass.

  4. HAHAHA! Dude…ernesto, you get alittle fiered up about the dude at Amoeba huh? Why the hell would you sell a Silent way featuring 4-way fold out gatefold, miles davis stickers, life size stand up of the man, 750 grams of marble swirl color vinyl,produced in Japan for a limited time, copy #1 of 10 back to Amoeba anyway? Did eBay finally ban you completely?

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