Record Shopping

As I travel, I'm always looking for places to shop for vinyl. With limited information available, I thought it would be helpful to others if I shared my experiences. Feel free to make your comments about the stores or to recommend stores in your city. I collect mostly 80's New Wave, Punk and Alternative so that's what I base my recommendations and reviews on.

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San Diego

Got here late Friday night, went to the Swap Meet in the early morning Saturday, don't know if it was luck or if it is always like this: Many sellers, enormous selection, low prices (mostly $1 or $2) and I walked away with boxes of New Wave stuff. What was truly amazing, probably 70% of the stuff I bought was in plastic sleeves already! I bet that of the hundreds of records I looked at, I might have put 2 or 3 back due to condition, most of the stuff was like it had never been played! I did find two of my white whales(N-E-1 (found two copies!) and The New Presidents - $3 total!!). One seller had everything for $2 and everything was bagged and in great shape, mostly 70's rock but I found 40 records there including Kraftwerk, Bill Nelson etc. He told me he had a ton of records at his thrift store on Garnet from the same collection, so later that day I went there and picked up another 50+ records. Off The Record on University was Saturday nights destination, found several items I was looking for but nothing spectacular. Decent selection and reasonably priced. Sunday morning it was back to the swap meet and although not quite as good as Saturday there were some notable finds. One Jackass I asked how much his records were and he said $1 and up. I looked through his odd collection and pulled out 5 records I wanted, nothing too spectacular except one. He said- these will be about $10 each! three of them were $2 records at best, one was a $4 or $5 record and I bought one- the Young Snakes- Aimee Mann's pre 'til Tuesday record in fantastic shape and told him he was crazy on the rest. He assured me he would have no problem getting $10 each for the others. I found the others down the row for $1 each about 3 minutes later. Had no other time for record shopping and I know there are more stores in the area but I recommend checking out the swap meet, I picked up a ton of stuff there at rock-bottom prices in great shape (better than most record stores I've been in). No comparison to our swap meet here in Arizona which would never be an option for records.

Posted - 06/23/2007 : 23:22:53
Back for round 2:Back to the Thrift Store, picked up about 30-40 titles, nothing more than $1.99, got some cool stuff (Vapors -Magnets, etc) again, all bagged and in great shape. Went to Lou's Records in Encinitas (15 minutes North of San Diego) prett good selection of vinyl, condition was an issue for a lot of stuff, nothing too spectacular, then I got to the 99 cent bins, found 70-75 titles, some really cool stuff (Horizontal Brian Sealed copy, Godfathers Birth Scool Work Death Dance Mix 12" with a perfect copy of a promotional photo inside, Pete Shelley Homosapien Dance Mix). Plenty of used CD's here at decent prices. Lou's has a building next store with all new CD's, nothing special. Went to Record City, great selection, awesome $1 bin, picked up 60-70 titles there, great staff, very friendly, highly recommended.Walked around the corner to Taang! unbelievable amount of rare punk vinyl 45's and LP's, at Top eBay prices, literally. Conversation while I was there between two employees (probably owner and employee) " It's online ranging from $40-$100" "OK, price it at $100". I didn't buy anything but if you just have to have that rare punk stuff, it's probably the place to go. Drove over to Off The Record again, didn't buy anything, it was almost like they hadn't gotten any new records in since I was there in March. Last day, went to the Swap Meet (this morning), pretty disappointing, hardly any people selling records this time, did pick up some 45's by The Ruts, Killing Joke and Blancmange and Duran Duran Carnival EP. Nothing over $1, mostly 50 cents.

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