More Record Store Casualties….

I’ve been informed that Aron Records of Los Angeles has shut down, and Rhino Records of Westwood will closing down on January 21st. This is very sad news.

Rhino Records of Westwood was the original retail store that inspired the record label of the same name. The first actual Rhino record was a 45 single of Wild Man Fischer performing “Go To Rhino Records,” which was given away to loyal customers. This led to the release of new comedy albums by The Firesign Theater, and reissues of albums by their friends The Turtles. Soon, the label become a full-fledged label as a separate company from the record store. One of the earliest successful complilations from Rhino Records was an LP entitled “The Best of LOUIE LOUIE” in 1983, which was released in conjunction with the legendary KFJC “Maximum LOUIE LOUIE” 63 hour maratahon. With a dedicated staff whose primary job was to create enjoyable collections that fans would embrace, the Rhino record label became one of the greatest reissue labels of America, and was eventually purchased outright by the Time-Warner empire for lotsa money.

When I lived in Los Angeles in 1997, I enjoyed exploring the various record stores of the region. Both Rhino and Aron’s were among my favorite places to shop, along with Atomic Records of Burbank. In fact, I even wrote up an online guide to record shops for LosAngeles.com.

A few months ago, I wrote about the demise of Compact Disc Wherehouse not far from where I live. A few years ago, my pal Stretch Riedle (responsible for the KFJC LOUIE marathon and the world’s largest collection of LOUIE LOUIE recordings) shut down his own retail store, the Compact Disc Land in Palo Alto, which was just a few miles from Stanford University. It wasn’t that long ago that both Tower Records and Wherehouse both filed for bankruptcy protection, just to stay alive.

The Los Angeles has a recent article on the demise of Rhino and Arons, dated January 6, 2006. It was just a few weeks ago, the Los Angeles also had an article on the demise of the New York Compact Disc store, dated December 26, 2005.

The last article features a story about a certain saleswoman for a telephone directory trying to sell advertising space to one of the independent record stores in New York City. The sales representative tries to convince the store that advertising in the Yellow Pages will help them compete against internet downloads. As the sales representative’s assistant brings a CD to the counter, her boss tells her “Don’t grab that- I’ll burn you a copy.”

…. and folks wonder why these stores go out of business……

(a tip of the hat goes out to Bob Sarles of Raven Films for pointing out these articles to me)

2 comments to More Record Store Casualties….

  • Great post. Sad to hear abut the Rhino store. However, the good that came from the store being open in the first place has to outweigh the loss from losing it years later.

  • Ok, this is kind of weird but I just ran across this YouTube video: Keisha Tik Tok Lyrics

    It’s this girl who calls herself Ke$ha (Yes that’s Keisha with a dollar sign lol) But she’s got this music video called Tick Tock and the lyrics are funny. It’s kind of a good song believe it or not. At one point she says something like “I brush my teeth with a bottle of Jack…” obviously has a drinking problem. Either way check it out and let me know how you like it. Like it or hate it?

    …And is it weird that I got it stuck in my head? 🙂

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>