Cleveland, OH - Record Store Recommendations

Discussion in 'Music, Movie and Hardware Store Guide' started by V I Aboytes, Jun 13, 2017.

  1. V I Aboytes

    V I Aboytes Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    San Antonio, TX
    I am working in Cleveland, OH this week and I would like to visit some record stores. Please give me some suggestions. I am more into used so I'm the more used records the better.

    Thanks in advance for your suggestions,

    V
     
  2. MikeP5877

    MikeP5877 Uh Huh

    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    Blue Arrow Records, a 10 minute freeway drive from Downtown Cleveland.

    Mucho used records.

    Blue Arrow Records


    There is another one a couple blocks away from there called Music Saves but I have not had a chance to stop on there.
     
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2017
  3. rjp

    rjp Forum Resident

    Location:
    ohio
    there is a huge chain of stores called 'the exchange" they are everywhere. used and new CD's vinyl, games. movies. decent prices too.

    if you have a car, and feel like driving about a half hour there is a store in mentor (east of cleveland on rte. 90) called record den, like going back in time....lots of new and used CD's and lots of used vinyl (not sure if they carry new vinyl, but i'm guessing they do).
     
  4. V I Aboytes

    V I Aboytes Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    San Antonio, TX
    I went to the Record Den yesterday and while they have tons of used vinyl they didn't have "collectible" vinyl the guy at the register said it didn't make sense for them to carry "collectible' vinyl. They do have a ton of new stuff too.
     
    Northwind likes this.
  5. needlestein

    needlestein Member

    Location:
    New England
    Record Den probably never went out of business. I haven't lived in the Cleveland area in almost thirty years, but I recall that name as being around when I was in high school.
     
  6. rjp

    rjp Forum Resident

    Location:
    ohio
    a very nice store indeed.
     
  7. V I Aboytes

    V I Aboytes Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    San Antonio, TX
    Blue Arrow - Very nice record store! Nice selection of used collectible vinyl and cats; yes cats! Would go back.
    Music Saves - Some used vinyl, not a lot. Lots of new vinyl. Not my cup of tea
    Record Den - Good for people looking for new vinyl. Not my cup of tea

    Today is my last day so if anyone can recommend one more store.

    Thanks for all the suggestions so far! I may hit up some of those Exchange stores if nothing else.

    V
     
  8. needlestein

    needlestein Member

    Location:
    New England
    Good thread. And now I'm armed for places to check out for when I go back and visit the folks.
     
  9. boboquisp

    boboquisp Forum Resident

    Location:
    NE Ohio
    The Exchange can have some pretty good used LP finds for fair prices. Some locations have more vinyl than others. :righton:
     
  10. MikeP5877

    MikeP5877 Uh Huh

    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    Blue Arrow is a fairly recent discovery for me. I happened to work a short drive from there for the last couple months, until just last week.

    I spent a few lunch hours in there, and more than a few bucks on records and old Mojo magazines (plus a few bucks for the neighborhood cats ).

    I still haven't made it through his full inventory. It's probably my favorite record store for used vinyl.


    It's too late now but another recent discovery for me was The Vinyl Groove in Bedford (east side suburb). It's not a huge selection but I was impressed the one time I stopped in there last summer.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2017
  11. Chris C

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

    Location:
    Ohio
    Yeah, "The Exchange" has pretty fair prices for buying, but they certainly aren't fair for selling to them. I've currently got about 1,500 albums that I want to sell and I know from past experiences that they won't be fair.
     
  12. V I Aboytes

    V I Aboytes Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    San Antonio, TX
    Are there any record stores that are fair when it comes to buying and trading? I've yet to find one... They usually point to overhead and expenses.
     
  13. rjp

    rjp Forum Resident

    Location:
    ohio
    record den = new vinyl????

    i haven't been up there in about a year, but when i was last there they had no new vinyl, just used....they did however, have thousands of new CD's
     
  14. Chris C

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

    Location:
    Ohio
    Greg has had new vinyl (and lots of it) for a long time! In fact, he used to have a section of new stuff in the back with the used vinyl, but now he has a whole area of new vinyl up near the front of the store, across from the counter and used CD's. I rarely get up there anymore, as he hasn't had the new stuff (not vinyl mind you, but more like new MFSL or A.F. stuff, or some oldies title on CD/SACD), that I have wanted to buy in stock. It's almost always the same deal with me talking to that younger buyer of his and saying "I can't believe that you didn't order this or that" and him always saying "I can order it for you and have it here in a few days". In a few days, I can order it myself from AMAZON and have it delivered to my front door, so why am I bothering to drive all the way up to his store? You can't say that I haven't "tried" to support the local guys, as I have, but anymore, what they buy to stock their stores ("The Exchange" stores included) and what I want to buy and take home, are two completely different things!
     
  15. Chris C

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

    Location:
    Ohio
    "The Exchange" stores used to be great and super fair in their buying practices, but not anymore!
     
    rjp likes this.
  16. hornsz

    hornsz Active Member

    Location:
    Motown, MI
    Hello. Does anyone know how A Separate Reality stacks up?
     
    Northwind likes this.
  17. spridle

    spridle Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Cleveland
    A Separate Reality is pretty cool. Gus knows what he has, so you're not going to find some rare, mint Psych album for a buck. His prices are fair, though. He's got around 250,000 records in there, so I'd be surprised if you don't find something you want. A Separate Reality is all used records. Loop is right around the corner. It's a coffee shop and record store upstairs. Less than 1/10th the size of A Separate Reality, but I always hit both up when I'm in Tremont. Loop also carries some new records. There have been days I've bought several records at Loop and only one or two from A Separate Reality, but that's just me. Parking in Tremont is a pain. A Separate Reality has great street parking usually, but Loop can be a mess to park at.

    If you're coming from Detroit I'd assume you'll have a car. Near enough to Tremont are My Mind's Eye in Lakewood, Blue Arrow, Music Saves and This Way Out in Collinwood. This Way Out is below The Beachland, Blue Arrow is 150 feet away. They both focus on used records. Music Saves is a great store if you like Indie Rock/Underground Rock. You won't find any Classic Rock or Jazz there, and their focus is new records. Hausfrau is in the Gordon Square district, and has an eclectic used selection. From downtown any of those are less than 20 minutes drive. Great food and drink in all those neighborhoods, too.
     
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  18. Northwind

    Northwind Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Impulsively took the 2 hour drive from Pittsburgh to check out Cleveland's used vinyl scene. Keep in mind, I'm approaching from the perspective of a 70s/80s rock/metal/prog used vinyl enthusiast.

    1. Record Den (Mentor): Within 30 seconds I knew this store was worthless to me, and I regretted wasting time driving to this remote corner of the metro area. Piles of dumpster-quality used records; I didn't even bother. Looks like a nice place for the cd collector, however.

    2. Blue Arrow (Collinwood): I read a lot of rave reviews about this place, but I was unimpressed by their rock inventory. There were a few interesting pieces in New Arrivals, but the existing rock stock was pretty generic. Left empty-handed; didn't even see the legendary shop cats. Didn't plan on visiting Music Saves as I knew what I was in for... but since it is literally next door, I ducked in. Mostly new hipster-approved vinyl. I was then told Beachland Ballroom (same block) had a small record store in its basement. I found it to be a pretty pointless selection. At this point, I'm 0 for 4.

    3. A Separate Reality (Tremont) - Billed as Ohio's largest all-vinyl store, I finally struck gold here. Very large and clean selection covering a great diversity of genres... with particularly good selection in my favored genres. Prog gets its own section, and it was the best selection of hard-to-find prog I've seen. I'd say this is the one must-stop for Cleveland visitors. After picking up a pile of vinyl here, I figured it would be a waste of time to stop by Loop. I also skipped over Hausfrau as this is apparently a tightly curated electronic/industrial/post-punk specialist... which isn't my thing, but may be well worth a visit if you enjoy those genres.

    4. My Mind's Eye (Lakewood) - This was the other store I was most excited to visit as I read that the owner had a vast knowledge of metal. He was very friendly and engaging, and I enjoyed talking about Ronnie James Dio's early singles from the 50s and 60s. Regretfully, I left empty-handed. The used vinyl selection was pretty small and random... and not very metal. However, this appeared to be a great store for those looking for new vinyl or CDs in metal or related genres. Afterwards, I enjoyed a delicious pizza at Angelo's.

    So... Cleveland was feast or famine for me. I don't feel the need to return just for records... but if I'm in town for something elae, I'll stop by A Separate Reality.
     
    Dr. Winston Ramone likes this.
  19. Chris C

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

    Location:
    Ohio
    Interesting to read a review from someone in Pittsburgh and I won't lie that the choices in Northeast Ohio aren't what they used to be! Sorry that you found our stores to be lackluster, but you are looking for genres of music (Metal and Prog) that "most" vinyl collectors seem to be looking for these days, so the pickings are naturally going to be thin, no matter which city you are visiting. You've just got to be at the right place, at the right time to find that stuff anymore. To be honest, I used to often drive over to Pittsburgh for vinyl (especially 45's), but these days, what is left there, is either way overpriced or has been picked over, leaving the same old, same old! My last few times at Jerry's, which used to be a goldmine for me, back in the 80's/90's, now leaves me feeling that I'd just be better off just hitting local garage sales, over driving the two and half hours to Squirrel Hill.
     
  20. rjp

    rjp Forum Resident

    Location:
    ohio
    i have to echo chris' comments about how good cleveland used to be.

    definitely not anymore, even for CD's....the exchange has basically achieved, what i always felt was their goal, to be the only store in town.

    record den in mentor is great for CD shopping, can't comment on vinyl because i never look. i was in a used store in windsor canada recently (dr. disc) and i did peruse the vinyl.....i have to agree, very poor quality, but i would have assume that most older vinyl would not be very pristine. years of wear and tear will do that.
     
  21. Northwind

    Northwind Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    I agree that Jerry's is pretty picked over (partly I think due to the fame this store has generated)... he's actually retiring this month... so it will be interesting to see what changes may be in store under the new ownership (some guy who moved here from Minneapolis a few years back... don't know anything about him). Jerry actually unloaded his entire 45 inventory on a buyer from Germany last year.

    Attic Records
    in Millvale tends to get more interesting new arrivals cycling in... though it can be bewildering to browse their somewhat disorganized store. I'm not a 45 guy, but his appears to be the place to go for 45s.

    If you do visit Pittsburgh, I would suggest stopping by a new store called Music to My Ear... I've been very impressed with their rapidly growing inventory. Clean and fairly priced... and nothing goes to eBay... so they stock a lot of more interesting and obscure records. They have 45s too.

    But... Pittsburgh has its own thread... and this is Cleveland... so I'll finish up by saying... for my tastes, I'd rank A Separate Reality as competitive with the best that Pittsburgh offers. The one store I wanted to check out, but didn't have a chance to... is The Vinyl Groove in Bedford.
     
  22. Chris C

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

    Location:
    Ohio
    Jerry sold off his entire 45 rpm inventory!!! :doh: I had absolutely no idea that he did that ..., talk about a deal killer!

    Attic is king of Doo Wop singles, of which I really don't buy very much of anymore, but they are the ones that I was saying have prices that are insane. That goofy guy charges nearly $20 bucks for an old Rhino CD that I can buy on Amazon for a couple of bucks. I guess his theory is, if you want it, I've got it and you're gonna pay out the a$$ for it. They had to be great back before they got flooded and lost a ton of inventory?

    By the way, The Vinyl Groove in Bedford has a pretty decent selection of both new and used vinyl, although I'm not sure what ratios of each genre he has.

    I'm currently sitting on about 1,500 albums and singles that I want to sell as a collection, with no cherry picking for $1,500 dollars and I've approached the guys in charge of A Separate Reality, The Vinyl Groove and a small store in Wooster and not one of those guys have even contacted me back to come and see what I'm selling. Oh well, their loss! They'll probably end up with a guy in Wisconsin, who has been traveling the Midwest in search of collections like mine, which is "a little bit of this and a little bit of that".
     
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  23. rjp

    rjp Forum Resident

    Location:
    ohio
    chris,

    i do believe that haven't contacted you because you are asking $1 per album and most dealers do not want to pay that much for vinyl, or CD's for that matter, anymore. they all want to buy for 25¢ and sell for $5, with the hopes of getting that one really rare album they can unload for big bucks (they do not want the sellers to ever know they have anything of value).

    you remember fat phil at spin-more in kent, he would have an album on open display for $20 - $25, you would bring in the same album in really good shape (sometimes better shape then his) and he would offer you $1 or 50¢ for it always always always saying he can;t sell the one on display what am i going to do with another one. then he would go to record shows and sell for $50 instead of $25.

    vinyl is a very tricky business right now, quite volatile, the owners of vinyl know the future is near for the bottom to fall out (most of them were also into baseball cards and many took a really big bath on those when that market crashed) and they don't want to get caught with tons of old, used, beat-up vinyl that no one wants. and they might have to sit on or take huge losses on because if they do sit on it it is just going to deteriorate in their back rooms and basements.

    my advice to you: take those 1,000 albums to the exchange and let him make you an offer, then do the same to record den. and while in mentor go to half-priced books too. then take the best offer and get while the getting is good.

    renny

    p.s. there is a store in niles ohio called record connection, he buys used vinyl too, if you feel like loading them in your car and taking a ride. but i have no idea what he pays for it, i only know that he sells it a very high prices, much higher than he should, but he is the only game in town other than the flea markets.
     
  24. Chris C

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

    Location:
    Ohio
    Renny,

    Thanks for the advice, I appreciate it! I took careful thinking into my pricing of that vinyl collection, as I do have many albums in there that I know are worth $10 to $20 dollars, so that would off-set the ones that are only worth a buck or two. Lots of promos, thanks to my many years in radio, which buyers know are collectable!

    It's funny that you mentioned that buyers don't want you to know that your stuff is valuable, as I actually called that local guy who advertises on TV ("My daddy will buy your records") and that guy was the WORST, especially once he knew that I was smart, LOL.

     
  25. DorothyV

    DorothyV Active Member

    Location:
    Cleveland, Ohio
    The Exchange (Coventry and Willoughby locations) is my favorite for used CDs - I have found so many gems in their $1 section that I can't even begin to list them.
     

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