Amoeba LA to close?

Discussion in 'Music, Movie and Hardware Store Guide' started by zakyfarms, Sep 12, 2016.

  1. Marc Perman

    Marc Perman Forum Resident

    Location:
    West of the Hudson
    Mono Records is on Colorado Ave in Glendale right by the 2 freeway, they moved last year from Glendale Ave. in Silver Lake. I love the store: prices are really cheap, there’s always a ton of stuff, with the caveat that condition can be spotty. There are two listening stations so you can audition before buying. Almost everying is under $10, and I’ve gotten some great bargains. The owner John was apparently a regular at Record Recycler in Torrence, a much larger version of the same kind of store. Definitely crate-digging places. Rockaway is a very different kind of store, lots of imports, most things in great condition, but it can be pricey. They do have a 10% off membership which costs $10 per year, I’ve made good use of that.
     
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  2. SixOClockBoos

    SixOClockBoos Forum Resident

    Yes, you're right, that's record store near the 2 freeway, Popeyes and Pizza Hut with the cramped parking is Mono. I quite like Mono because they do have good priced stuff on 45's, which is what I mainly collect. I don't remember the last LP I bought for myself, but it was certainly last year and I could probably look it up on discogs right now if I had the tab opened. Coincidentally, I went to Mono yesterday and I walked out with some NM to VG++ 45's which included a 1st pressing promo copy with "Gimme Gimme Good Lovin'" for $2, a NM- sounding stock copy of "Cecilia" with clean labels for $1, stock copy of "Winchester Cathedral" with a little bit of sticker residue for $1 and "I'll Be Doggone" with a little label wear for $3, so YMMV for that store. I do agree with you that the covers aren't well kept there. A lot of times the 45 section will have beat up company sleeves, beat up white sleeves even and also some crumpled company sleeves within the boxes of 45's and records without sleeves. I do like how they have a listening station though, which is something all record stores should have.

    I love Rockaway more than Mono. They definitely have a very knowledgeable staff, a well maintained selection, good prices on their LP's and pretty great selection of 45's. Last time I was there I bought the last LP I bought (it was a gift) and quite a few 45's including 4 Seasons, Wonder Who?, The Reflections and Bobby Vinton.

    I do however feel that Amoeba carries a lot of new /reissue records for a certain amount of artists. I prefer buying used records over new records, so looking for a used Bowie LP is nearly impossible, or maybe I just don't know where to look. Whenever my friend and I would go, we'd always check the "recent arrivals" sections first, but now I just go to the 45's and see what changed from the last visit.
     
  3. StevenC

    StevenC SUEDE > Both Oasis AND Blur.

    Bowie originals are hard to find in LA since his death ...even the shi tty ones post Let's Dance.

    You have to go Discogs for Bowie originals. If you do: The UK ones sound better than the US ones and the German ones sound better than the UK ones...

    Also, if you go to the back counter at Rockaway, they have boxes behind the counter broken out by decade: 80s albums, 90s albums, etc. Rockaway is your best best for original Bowies.
     
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  4. Marc Perman

    Marc Perman Forum Resident

    Location:
    West of the Hudson
    Atomic Records in Burbank sometimes has them, Ive gotten a few original Bowie pressings there in the last year, including the elusive Hunky Dory (elusive first US press in good condition that is).
     
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  5. Matt Starr

    Matt Starr Musician who happens to play drums

    I agree. I’ve seen original Bowie pressings at all the better LA stores at one point or another. Mostly US pressings obviously but I’ve seen plenty of imports as well - UK, German, Japanese, Canadian.

    Los Angeles is veritable treasure trove of vinyl. If / when Amoeba finally does shut down, I will be sad because it has mostly been a great store but we will all be ok. Freakbeat, Atomic and Rockaway alone keep me plenty busy. We are very fortunate to live where we do as vinyl collectors.
     
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  6. Marc Perman

    Marc Perman Forum Resident

    Location:
    West of the Hudson
    Yes, come to LA for the weather, stay for the record stores!
     
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  7. SixOClockBoos

    SixOClockBoos Forum Resident

    I was on the hunt for an original Bowie copy of Young Americans for a friend and the first store I tried looking for it other than Amoeba was Rockaway, found it there a few others too. Rockaway rules!
     
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  8. thoutah

    thoutah Forum Resident

    Location:
    SF Bay Area
    Well, I suppose it was good while it lasted. I was slightly dismayed last week to find that Mad Monk had abruptly moved all their vinyl back up the street into the dank basement of the main Rasputin's location, and they had a hand-written note on the door saying it was closed until further notice. I asked the sole employee in the basement if he knew why they had done this, and his response was that he really didn't know, just that it was one of the whims of the owner, Ken. With Ken being so mercurial, it's difficult to know why he does what he does. Maybe it wasn't financially viable to keep both stores open? But he could have had some other much less logical reason for doing this, so it's difficult to speculate. But I was a bit bummed out, as I thought the old Cody's space was really nice - it was spacious and just had an all-around nicer vibe; much preferable to that cramped Rasputin's basement. Oh well!

    If Ken were the type to make rational decisions, he'd move all the CDs and DVDs into the basement and put the vinyl on the main floor where all the rock CDs are now.
     
  9. StevenC

    StevenC SUEDE > Both Oasis AND Blur.

    Rasputins hasn't been great for a long time. I still go to the one in Campbell California (near San Jose) and they have a complete vinyl room. It's not bad... but Streetlight Records is up the street, same street, 1 mile away. Streetlight's vinyl selection - especially used vinyl, is much much better than Rasputin. I assume this is because Rasputin pays so little at the trade counter. Example: I had bought a couple of the recent individual Bowie re-issues and then ended up springing for the big box set. I went to the trade counter and they offered me $1.00 each for unplayed, still in the shrink, copies of "Aladdin Sane" and "Man Who Sold the World". I question the guy at the counter and he says "No one wants these albums in 2016." So manipulating me into thinking that they are s* * t so you can pay less? Come on. These are things they'd price used for $16. I WANT you to make money off of it. I know how it works. But not that much money...

    The Berkeley store, I grew up going there in the late 90's through the 2000s. The downstairs vinyl wasn't bad. The store, since moving the vinyl away across from Amoeba, seems less appealing.
     
  10. SixOClockBoos

    SixOClockBoos Forum Resident

    That quote is getting to me, Bowie left such an impact to the music world and he was mourned for months by fans and this guy at the trade counter is saying "no one wants these albums in 2016". Jesus christ, what a shmuck.
     
  11. StevenC

    StevenC SUEDE > Both Oasis AND Blur.

    was his attempt to manipulate to pay less. I'm thinking that people don't trade there. Rasputin's was once great. I bought a lot of my stuff there for a long time. But now, they have a "Booty" DVD section. What they're good for is you can get CDs for dirt cheap - - great titles too. Some examples: Bjork "Post" remastered and "Homogenic" remastered, $1.95 each, U2 Achtung Baby, Super Deluxe Edition 5 disc box set that retailed for $129, I got for $21.99, etc.
     
  12. MikeyH

    MikeyH Stamper King

    Location:
    Berkeley, CA
    Shop Talk: Crate & Barrel; Braid Bar & Beauty; Hands-On!; Uchi; Mad Monk

    Along with restaurants, record stores also close before I can get to them!

    I worked in the Telegraph 'dank basement' for a few years, and was able to really take their 'buyers' for a ride - literally no idea of current prices on vinyl or collectible CD material. Much great inventory was drowned down there in several feet of floods, more than once.

    If you're only paying $1 for mint/sealed premium items, it doesn't matter. That was, and probably still is, big used stores m.o.

    I'm pleased that small, collector-owned stores are making a comeback in and around Berkeley.

    I too would throw the 'digital' works into the cafe/performance store with the books, and have three floors of records again at the Mothership store. Those were the days!

    (at least Ken closed the crazy ice cream counter)
     
  13. RTurner

    RTurner Forum Resident

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    I got an EX original UK pressing of 'Low' off the wall at Rockaway for $20.00 - about a year ago.
     
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  14. Marc Perman

    Marc Perman Forum Resident

    Location:
    West of the Hudson
    So what are the small record stores making s comeback in the East Bay? I’d be happy to reciprocate with my list of LA stores, but I think I already did in this thread!
     
  15. StevenC

    StevenC SUEDE > Both Oasis AND Blur.

    There are two indie stores in the east bay. They also now have newer stores in San Francisco across the street from each other. Stranded Records in Oakland and in SF is my favorite. Amoeba Berkeley is still good too. I lean toward these two for the used collectible original copies. 1-2-3-4 Go is great in Oakland and SF too, but more new records, new indie and UK releases and newer re-issues to, If I had to pick, Stranded in SF and Oakland, Amoeba SF and Berkeley, 1-2-3-4 Go Records and there is a cool smaller used shop in Western Addition San Fran. Fillmore at Geary maybe?? It's on the corner and all the sign above the door reads is "RECORDS". All better than Rasputins, but I realize this list is BAY AREA, not just East Bay...Sorry!
     
  16. Marc Perman

    Marc Perman Forum Resident

    Location:
    West of the Hudson
    Thanks. There’s a cramped little store in the middle of North Beach that I’ve been to and liked, on Grant Ave. I think. It’s not the place on Green St. with the completely disorganized basement, which is too crate-diggery, even for me.
     
  17. StevenC

    StevenC SUEDE > Both Oasis AND Blur.

    yeah...those places in North Beach are tough to recommend to someone not from the area because it's impossible to park and if it's too small, it could be a let down to someone who came from out of town.
     
    Marc Perman likes this.
  18. AlmanacZinger

    AlmanacZinger Made in the 20th Century

    Location:
    East Coast, US
    That pic doesn't even include the upstairs, the back room or the right side of that room.
     
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  19. recstar24

    recstar24 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Glen Ellyn, IL
    I’m in LA currently visiting my aunt and uncle (Reseda to be specific) and my aunt is taking me to amoeba tomorrow in Hollywood, looking forward to it!

    Worth to try and hit up atomic as well in Burbank? I’m a jazz head.
     
  20. Marc Perman

    Marc Perman Forum Resident

    Location:
    West of the Hudson
    Yes for sure, Atomic has a fine stock of used jazz LPs, as does Freakbeat in Sherman Oaks.
     
  21. mikeyt

    mikeyt Forum Resident

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    YES. Atomic usually has a some gems in their bins, and if there's a title you're really seeking ask b/c they have one in the back.
     
  22. recstar24

    recstar24 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Glen Ellyn, IL
    Good call on atomic, place was awesome. A little tight due to all the stacked boxes on the floor but manageable.

    As I was looking one of the guys brought in some AP blue notes that looked untouched, I grabbed Jimmy smith and grant green grantstand 45. I saw a blue note book hanging in a shelf in the back and I inquired about it and they sold it to me for a few bucks, a book of blue note album covers. While I was checking out, I saw what appeared to be a Charlie rouse VMP double 45 blue note, which they sold me for $25 (just searched and it appears it officially comes out April 17 lol). I could have done a lot more damage to my wallet too, but had some restraint, there were some nice blue note liberties, Chet Baker Sam records reissues, some nice MFSL jazz stuff...amoeba in comparison had very little to offer, was pretty disappointed in their jazz Stock.
     
  23. jhm

    jhm Forum Resident

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  24. Chris C

    Chris C Music was my first love and it will be my last!

    Location:
    Ohio
    That would be fun to witness first hand, not that I'd be able to afford to buy what they have, but just to see the type pf guys who are truly willing to "pay AMOEBA's prices to have them in their collection". Maybe they should have asked Steve Hoffman to come and autograph them?
     
    jhm likes this.
  25. MikeyH

    MikeyH Stamper King

    Location:
    Berkeley, CA

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