Record stores in San Fran?

Discussion in 'Music, Movie and Hardware Store Guide' started by Chester0711, Feb 14, 2020.

  1. Greenalishi

    Greenalishi Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Francisco
    I gotta take Cal Train and go to the Rocord Man. Never heard of that store. Thanks

    Fun hunting in new spots.
     
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  2. reverendjim

    reverendjim Forum Resident

    Location:
    new york, ny, usa
    I’m curious to hear what you think! That place leaves a really bad taste in my mouth...its selling points seem to be “we’ve been around for a long time!” and “we have tons of records!” He doesn’t seem terribly interested in actually moving those records out of there, though...the vast majority of them should probably be priced at $5 or less, but only a very, very small number up front are actually stickered. The others, as far as I can tell, get priced when you walk up to the counter and serve as a test of how big a sucker you are.
     
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  3. reverendjim

    reverendjim Forum Resident

    Location:
    new york, ny, usa
    It is, though, very close to the CalTrain — five minute walk?
     
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  4. Greenalishi

    Greenalishi Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Francisco
    Thanks all

    I'll look out for that dynamic.
     
  5. sberger

    sberger Grumpy(but grateful) geezer

    All the stores mentioned are good, and yes, if you're visiting San Francisco, Amoeba is worth going to. But I haven't found much in recent years that has interested me on the used front. For that, Stranded in Piedmont(Oakland) has been my favorite store for a few years now. They constantly have stuff that I never see anywhere else, and they have a very eclectic collection of new stuff. Being the retail arm of the excellent Superior Viaduct label also means they have all that stuff. Plus, they give very good trade in value, and the guys who work there are great.

    That it's 15 minutes from where I live is a plus also.
     
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  6. Greenalishi

    Greenalishi Forum Resident

    Location:
    San Francisco
    Awesome another store i never heard of to visit. Thanks.

    Aomeba i live at. Always a crapshoot. But the search is fun. When i cant find my list stuff what i end up stumbling upon is the enjoyment for me.
     
  7. sberger

    sberger Grumpy(but grateful) geezer

    When I worked in SF in the late 90's to 2007 I lived at Amoeba also(both SF and Berkeley). It was a much different store back in the mid/late 90's, early 2000's. Back when vinyl wasn't as popular you could find incredible things in their bins, never mind their walls. As conditions changed in the economy, and more people started buying vinyl, their jazz collection started to dwindle, which affected me the most. You could still find some good stuff but it wasn't like the old days. Once I stopped being in SF on a daily basis, my visits their became less.

    Stranded is a beautifully curated store. Their Mission store is also very good(as is their NYC outlet) but focuses more on mostly eclectic new releases. That said they have a pretty good used collection, too. The Oakland store has the real good stuff, the one of a kind stuff. Not cheap, but worth it. They'll let you hear it before you buy, and if there is any problem they'll take it back pretty much without question. It's a store owned and run by record freaks which is clear when you visit.
     
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  8. Black Elk

    Black Elk Music Lover

    Location:
    Bay Area, U.S.A.
  9. sberger

    sberger Grumpy(but grateful) geezer

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  10. groundharp

    groundharp Maybe your friends think I'm just a stranger

    Location:
    California Day
    Hmm... you look somewhat different from what I'd imagined based on your avatar. But Mrs. Mazzy looks like a cutie pie!

    Shame on you for telling folks to google "Marianne Faithfull" + "mars bar" though, as that story definitely falls into the "fake news" category!
     
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  11. groundharp

    groundharp Maybe your friends think I'm just a stranger

    Location:
    California Day
    Just be forewarned, none of the records at Record Man have prices on them. You pick out what you want and bring 'em up to the counter, and then they decide what to charge you. You can negotiate a little bit, but they don't really move far off their quoted prices. It could be described as "point of purchase blackmail".

    The only "secret area" at Record Man that I know about is the upstairs portion. Is there another area there that I don't know about?
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2020
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  12. ispace

    ispace Forum Resident

    Location:
    Sydney Australia
    I would never visit a store that does that. Do they look up Discogs while you're waiting?
     
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  13. Steve O

    Steve O Forum Resident

    Well, it's been a while since I've been there, but besides the upstairs (Definitely check that out!) there was also a shipping container I got to go into that had a ton of interesting stuff (including 78's and Edison discs).
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2020
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  14. Steve O

    Steve O Forum Resident

    I remember it seemed to be a lot easier when the owner wasn't there and you got to deal with his wife or a young guy (his son?) who worked the counter. But, like I said, it's been a while so I'm sure everything has changed.

    But anyway, it's like shops I've been to in other countries where you have to be somewhat proficient at bargaining. It helps if you're not just buying one record!
     
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  15. mantis4tons

    mantis4tons Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denver, CO, USA
    Groove Merchant and Stranded are my stops when I'm in SF. I spent a lot of time at Amoeba when I lived in the city 10+ years ago, but I find that both of the shops I mentioned have a better curated and more interesting selection.
     
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  16. reverendjim

    reverendjim Forum Resident

    Location:
    new york, ny, usa
    That’s my sense. The last time I was in there some guy paid 20 bucks for a beat copy of some later Talking Heads record (“Little Creatures” or “True Stories,” I think) because he couldn’t say no standing there at the register. And “look up Discogs” here doesn’t mean finding the specific pressing. It means looking at the master entry, checking the highest sales price, and asking for that, regardless of condition. Check their Yelp reviews. Based on what I’ve observed there on my few visits, the negative ones are extremely accurate.
     
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  17. Chee

    Chee Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denver
    $20 for a beat Talking Heads LP......that's says it all. All the stores get the stuff in paying nowhere near worth, put on Discogs-eBay then put the crumbs in the racks. I've seen it everywhere or ridiculous prices til the Discogs drop. Just read Yelp reviews, saves time driving.
     
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  18. dcarwin

    dcarwin Active Member

    Location:
    San Francisco
    RIP Aquarius Records

    [​IMG]
     
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  19. zakyfarms

    zakyfarms White cane lying in a gutter in the lane.

    Location:
    San Francisco
    Aquarius records has been gone for years, and sadly missed.
     
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  20. dcarwin

    dcarwin Active Member

    Location:
    San Francisco
    If anyone remembers Andee from Aquarius, who also drummed for A Minor Forest, he now curates the metal/heavy music at Pandora.
     
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  21. zakyfarms

    zakyfarms White cane lying in a gutter in the lane.

    Location:
    San Francisco
    Also plays with Common Eider, King Eider. A fine chap.
     
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  22. 4-2-7

    4-2-7 Forum Resident

    Location:
    SF Peninsula
    [QUOTE="reverendjim, post: 23238075, member: 13705"]I have to say that I never find anything there. New vinyl is pricey and hit-or-miss as to whether they actually got it in, and the used stuff all seems like it’s been there for 20 years. It’s the closest store to me, though (aside from the truly awful “Record Man”), so I *WANT* to like it![/QUOTE]

    That's because you have to compete with someone like me LOL:D

    Actually I do the majority of my record shopping there, call it preferred customer or what. Prices are cheaper there than anywhere for really clean records $3.00- $5.00. Amoeba would charge 10-14 and 25 bucks and seal the records up so you can't look at them but say you can open them at the counter. Their price/grading is so whacked out I'v been very disappointed getting home thinking I'll have a nice record. I then open it and say you got to be kidding, who the hell put a 25-30 price on this G record. The ones they don't seal up well are not really anything special. What they do have going for them is many unique titles that you can find at any given time, but it's going to cost you, and you better take the time to open them.

    Vinyl Solutions I hit up a couple times a week, many times we go through records as he is bringing them out to put on the floor. Or I should say he'll go through records when I come in so I can get titles before they hit the floor. But I spend thousands a month there so it's a perk, as well as I have a box in the back he'll put records in for me, thinking I'll want them.

    He never charges anywhere near full price on used record even if he knows something is a $100 record, he'll say see and show me prices online, but you can have it for $50. Many times I'll get what he has for higher price records when a sweet collection comes in. He might charge $10, $15- $30, I'll go home and see many of these selling for $150, $200 and $300.

    As far as new records he's about the same price as Amoeba give or take a few cents. I know they cost less online but I'm going to support my local store. I rather be able to handle the records and see what I'm buying in a store than shop online. If it cost me $2.00-$10.00 more a title to keep a local store open I'm fine with that.

    Anyway, he rather move volume than sitting on records because selling low instead of max prices. So at his prices and a good lot comes in, I'll be leaving the store with 30-60 records at a time. He dose spread his action around, if your a good customer of his and try's to take care of people.
     
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  23. Black Elk

    Black Elk Music Lover

    Location:
    Bay Area, U.S.A.
  24. theembryo

    theembryo Active Member

    Location:
    USA
    Unfortunate indeed. From our friends at brain-damage.co.uk:

    Record Store Day 2020 moves date due to COVID-19 precautions [​IMG] [​IMG]
    Written by Matt
    Friday, 13 March 2020
    [​IMG]
    Due to the current global COVID-19/Coronavirus pandemic, the annual Record Store Day has been postponed, and is now scheduled to take place on June 20th. All items that were due on April 18th should now be available from participating physical stores on the new date (assuming the situation globally has improved sufficiently by then).

    From a Pink Floyd related standpoint, that includes the 7" single of Arnold Layne, recorded live at the Syd Barrett tribute held at the Barbican, Roger Waters Live In Berlin 1990 on 2LP clear vinyl, the Guy Pratt/David Gilmour collaboration on the Hackers soundtrack 2LP, and the 12" Nick Mason's Saucerful Of Secrets single.

    Obviously the pandemic is a developing situation and should there be more alterations, we will let you all know. At this stage, we suspect pressing plants are already producing these items so they should be available, in some matter, at some point...

    To us, it is not a particularly surprising move, as those who have attended previous years will be aware that you will be stood queuing, shoulder to shoulder with strangers, for a number of hours. Add in the number of surfaces that will be touched by (in some cases) a few hundred people all in a short space of time, we were expecting this sort of precaution to take place.
     
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  25. Chee

    Chee Forum Resident

    Location:
    Denver
    Vinyl Solutions must be the only shop in the world that doesn't look everything up on eBay completed or Popsike. Hard to believe anybody is out there like that.
     

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