Ode to a deceased record store owner

Discussion in 'Music, Movie and Hardware Store Guide' started by Whoopycat, Oct 1, 2017.

  1. Whoopycat

    Whoopycat Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Des Moines
    It was with great sadness that I learned that Kirk Walther, the longtime owner of the Record Collector in Iowa City, passed away last week. I lived in Iowa City for only about 18 months back in the early 90's, but I've been making periodic visits to the Record Collector for the last 25 years.

    The main reason was that I sell a lot of cd's and records that I don't listen to anymore, and Kirk always treated me fairly, more fairly than any other store I've sold at. I loved dropping off a box of discs and browsing the store while he went through them. He'd usually make comments, like showing appreciation if I brought in something obscure, or talk about artists I was selling that he had seen live. Most of my trips concluded with him handing me a stack of bills, and me handing half of them back for new purchases.

    Kirk had great taste in music. On the store's facebook page, they posted his all-time top 10 albums. He loved Hendrix, but he also listed Jeff Beck's Rough and Ready album, which would make him the only person other than myself that I know of who loves that album. He also listed Vs. by Mission of Burma. I bought that cd in his store many years ago, and I remember him telling me that it was his favorite album from the 80's.

    That's my only connection to him, as I didn't know him at all. But it's a significant connection to me nonetheless, and my thoughts are with his wife, employees, and all the customers like me who loved going there.
  2. Sorry to hear that. Been there about a dozen times. Great college town record store. Someone there, probably the owner, said he had more Beatles records somewhere else...in the basement or at home, and he needed to price them and put them out in the bins. Don't know if that ever happened.
    I hope the store will continue.

  3. sirmikael

    sirmikael Forum Resident

    Cedar Rapids, Iowa
    Just seeing this post now, even though I knew about his passing when it was announced on Facebook.

    I had the chance to talk to Kirk many times during my stops into his shop. Great guy, and he always made sure that the kids working there were a real part of the store, not just employees.

    For now, the store is still going. I've been in two or three times since his passing, and they're forging ahead. I really hope they figure out a way to keep it open and continue his legacy.

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