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Tiki Central Forums Beyond Tiki Is Your Favorite Music Store Extinct?
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Is Your Favorite Music Store Extinct?
Grand Member (6 years)  

Joined: Oct 15, 2002
Posts: 1560
From: Ventura County
Posted: 2005-01-17 10:53 pm   Permalink

The 60s had "Wallich's Music City" and their glass listening booths. The 70's we had "Grasshoppa" on Whittier Blvd with lotsa cool Imports and bootlegs, until they were sued by newcombers, "The Wherehouse" for selling lps for $2.99 (theirs were $3.69). Licorice Pizza was cool for a while, then they moved into the malls and went out of business. Moby Disc? Gone. Rockaway? A shell of it's former self. Aaron's and Rhino are still around, but not as many parking lot sales. Amoeba is good, but a bit far. Here in the suburbs we lost Tower and The Wherehouse a few years ago so the only local shopping is Best Buy (whose 2 full racks of Blues when they opened a few years back has shrunk to about 2 feet in one rack) and Borders. I wasn't too shocked (but sad) when the last time I went to Pasadena my long time favorite "Poobah's" (where I fist found Tiki News) is no more after 30+ years.

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Site Administrator

Joined: Aug 10, 2004
Posts: 3453
From: Redondo Beach, CA
Posted: 2005-01-18 12:27 am   Permalink

Upon reading that Poo Bah Records was gone my heart just about gave out. I haven't visited them in about five or more years. When I lived closer to them I would visit about once or twice a month!

But here's the good news. It looks like they are still open! Apparently they moved to a new location. It's probably not as cool as that funky house they were in but perhaps it's bigger. I guess it's time to pay them a visit.


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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 24, 2002
Posts: 1345
Posted: 2005-01-18 01:48 am   Permalink

Wow, I haven't thought of Poobah's in years. I went to college in Pasadena and that store was a Mecca of cool music and knowlegeable folks. And I loved the house.
Rocakaway was great, too. I still have CD cases with their sticker on them and it makes me all nostalgic. And Aaron's on Melrose - another great memory.
At least I live in the land of Amoeba - 2 of 'em! Although lately I'm digging Rasputin more. Cheaper discs, and more like Amoeba was 10 years ago.
Great memories! Thanks for the trip down memory lane, even if it's a sad trip past closed stores.

Oh, and I almost forgot: There are still great, small stores around the bay area. Down Home music on San Pablo in Albany is about a mile from my house. Excellent selection of folk, ethnic, bluegrass, classic country, all the good stuff. Highly recommend a trip there if you're in the 'hood.

And in the City, Aquarius is tiny but has outstanding and very knowledgeable staff who can answer any question and always point you in the right direction. You can say, "I want something like My Bloody Valentine-meets-alt-country and they will find something for you. I highly recommend their gigantic weekly newsletter via email you can sign up for here:


[ This Message was edited by: Tiki-bot on 2005-01-18 01:56 ]

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 15, 2003
Posts: 3006
From: San Diego, Ca.
Posted: 2005-01-18 08:17 am   Permalink

Poobah's moved to next door to the Colorado, across from the Dennys on Colorado Blvd. You can shop for records, then go next door to shoot pool & drink beer in an old, dark dive bar, then weave across the street for a burger & fries at the counter of a classic Dennys (20 years ago I used to do just that, only without the record shopping part).
Rev. Dr. Frederick J. Freelance, Ph.D., Th.D., D.F.S

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 24, 2002
Posts: 1368
From: 1st website dedicated to Tiki Gardens
Posted: 2005-01-18 08:42 am   Permalink

Don's Music in Eagle Rock, Eagle Rock Blvd, just about two blocks south of Colorado.

Tell him Tiki Gardener sent ya.


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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 13, 2003
Posts: 1179
From: The Quiet EAST Village
Posted: 2005-01-18 08:47 am   Permalink

You folks out on the West Coast are sooooo lucky. Some of your shops may have dissapeared but at least you have Amoeba! I was first introduced to that store in San Francisco, the one built in the old bowling alley on Haight Street. The last time I was in Los Angeles was in May 2002, I went out there with a good buddy of mine who is a hardcore music lover and vinyl junkie. As jaded as he is he thought that place was amazing. Here in the Apple we think we have everything. Not so...we don't have Amoeba! We even saw Ben Stiller and his wife Christine Taylor shopping in there. Wowie Zowie!!!

As far as the stores here, I have to say after seeing so many other businesses become history, alot of the record stores are still around. The only ones that I can think of that are gone are Second Coming in the west village which I think has become a Mexican Restaurant or something and Smash Compact Disc on St. Mark's, that was THE place to take your used stuff and either trade or sell. It's been replaced by another record store that's geared more to collectors and stuff like that. It's actually a cooler store called Rocket Scientists. Other than that the same old stuff, I'm happy to report is still around. Tower, Virgin Megastore, Subtarranean Records, Rebel Rebel, and a few others. But like I said....we have nothing like Amoeba. For the life of me I can't figure out why we still don't have that out here. That and Rubio's fish tacos, that would do great business here! (most people haven't even heard of fish tacos out here, if you can believe that!)

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 16, 2004
Posts: 1368
From: San Diego, CA
Posted: 2005-01-18 09:45 am   Permalink

Lou's Records in Encinitas, California has been a long time favorite of mine. It's one of those places that I need to save up for before I go because I usually buy about 5 more CD's than I was planning on getting. You can seriously think of any artist, and they will have at least 3 or 4 of their CD's (including imports of all kinds) if not more. I always take any audiophiles that come to visit me there. They also have a large selection of new & used LP's as well as used CD's in a building right next door.

I HIGHLY recommend a visit there the next time you find yourself traveling the 101 to San Diego.

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Geeky Tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 15, 2002
Posts: 533
From: Las vegas
Posted: 2005-01-18 09:59 am   Permalink

What a cool thread, both bittersweet and hopeful.

A big bummer for me was losing "The Flipside" in the valley several years back.

Then a favorite on Washington Blvd. west of Sepulveda - was it Record Rover (?) disappeared.

The old Licorice Pizze stores withered as noted, and the cool Tower on Sunset that we'd travel hundreds of miles to get to in the 70's became a shell of its glorious self.

In the Bay Area we had Amoeba and Pasputin's for serious vinyl hunting. There is (was) also a small place on the north side of Market on Church Street - where the street is narrower and quiet that kept a great vinyl selection going.

There was another place, on San Pablo in El Cerrito - Arhoolie? - that had really cool off the beaten track vinyl.

Now, it's mostly online vinyl hunting for what's new: Acoustics Sounds and Music Direct.

Not to be too retro, but I'm still waiting for digital to catch up with vinyl.

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 13, 2003
Posts: 1179
From: The Quiet EAST Village
Posted: 2005-01-18 10:21 am   Permalink

Forgot to mention in my previous thread:

There was a small chain of record stores in the area where I grew up in in South Florida called Peaches. They gained some nationwide recognition, and were famous for their Peaches Crates for storing your records and tapes as well as their peach crate wood interiors in the stores. They were also famous for the giant album covers they would hang in front of the stores to advertise the latest sounds. Every time you walked into one of them the place hit you with the overwhelming smell of wood. The main one was actually located not far down the street from the Mai Kai in Ft. Lauderdale. That location was the equivalent of maybe a Tower location, and in the 70s and 80s was the epicenter for retail music. Everytime you went to the beach, you had to pass Peaches on the way down Sunrise Blvd. They opened one in the 'burbs near where I lived and I had to get a job there, which I did the summer after graduating high school. I went in there just about everyday bugging them until they gave me a job. Long story short I was there a little over two years and had a great time. We even had an in-store event where Billy Squier came to sign copies of his new record "Emotions In Motion'...ooooh. For some reason him and his manager kept ducking in and out of the bathroom for a few minutes at a time. Hmmm...wonder what that was all about. He was pretty unfriendly to the staff too. Total egomaniac.

I'll never forget the day we had a staff meeting around 1985 and the boss comes in with the new mini Peaches crate for storing something called Compact Discs. At the time we had one little section for CDs which, we thought, would be a specialized format for hardcore audiophiles, particularly people that listened to classical music, and the occasional head that wanted to listen to Pink Floyd 'Dark Side of the Moon' at it's best audio quality. Man, were we wrong about that. At that staff meeting the boss standing in front of us in his Peaches t-shirt held the crate up in his hand and said in his southern drawl 'See this here...this is the future'.

Looks like for now CDs are here to stay, but Peaches closed all their stores somewhere in the early 90s. The last time I looked, the one near the Mai Kai was still vacant with a 'for rent' sign out front.

[ This Message was edited by: donhonyc on 2005-01-18 10:31 ]

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 25, 2002
Posts: 1563
Posted: 2005-01-18 11:02 am   Permalink

I'd routinely get ripped off at Bleeker Bob's on Melrose in the 80's.... Great stuff - especially boots, but man were they a rip off on out of print stuff...

Are they still there on Melrose? I remember the "code" for bootlegs was "Do you guys have any rare live LPs?"

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Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 2989
From: Tradewinds Apartments, Alameda, CA
Posted: 2005-01-18 11:22 am   Permalink


On 2005-01-18 09:59, Geeky Tiki wrote:
There was another place, on San Pablo in El Cerrito - Arhoolie? - that had really cool off the beaten track vinyl.

That's Down Home Music that Tiki-bot mentioned. Arhoolie is one of their labels - old blues mostly.

While living in San Diego I loved Blue Meanie in El Cajon. I revisited the place a few years ago and it wasn't so great - mostly heavy metal and classic rock. Off the Record was great in the 80s, it's still around but not as good. Lou's in Encinitas is probably the best one left in San Diego County.

Vinyl Fetish was a must for me when visiting LA in the 80s. It's still on Melrose the last time I checked.

I love Amoeba but they get most of the business in the bay area so I try and spread my money around a bit. Last Saturday I went to Rooky Ricardo's at 448 Haight. It's a great store for 45s of soul and oldies, and LPs of soul and jazz.

Here's a list of some other bay area record stores:


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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 13, 2003
Posts: 1179
From: The Quiet EAST Village
Posted: 2005-01-18 11:23 am   Permalink

I hear ya Tang-

The Bleecker Bob's here is a total rip-off. I'm surprised that they're still in business. Over priced and the staff are complete assholes. It's great for window shopping, and that's it. They used to have a great T-shirt department in the back, and that was the last thing I think I bought there one night in around '97. And this isn't some macho brag, but the one good experience I had at Bleecker Bob's was having an instant fling with the chick that was at the T-shirt sales counter that night...doh! And all I was doing was looking for a Stooges t-shirt...sheesh! (I know..."Spazz you old make-out master!!")

Anyway....the Bleecker Bob's location here is housed in what used to be the (legendary) 1960s nightclub The Night Owl. Alot of the East Coast folk & pop bands from that time like the Lovin' Spoonful and the Blues Magoos played there in their early days. The Nigh Owl gets a mention in that Mamas & Papas mega-hit 'Creeque Alley'.

[ This Message was edited by: donhonyc on 2005-01-18 11:38 ]

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Geeky Tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 15, 2002
Posts: 533
From: Las vegas
Posted: 2005-01-18 11:55 am   Permalink

Oh, geez, I forgot a great resource:


Sort of a gian conglomeration of different dealers selling under one "roof."

Great prices and search engine.

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 04, 2003
Posts: 2385
From: Vista, CA
Posted: 2005-01-18 2:03 pm   Permalink

As Machtiki already said.

***Lous Records ***

is the only place I buy music in person (of course there is the internet too). I generally do not have any specific disc in mind, I will just wander up and down the aisles of the used and new sections just looking for things that I dont have. I generally set aside an hour or so to wander around.

Their prices often beat the pants off any major competitor too.

I've been going to Lou's since 1987 when they were located in a teeny tiny storefront in downtown Encinitas.

Best part is that Lou is still there working in the store.

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Trader Woody
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 2301
From: Tiki Manor, Forest of Bowland,UK
Posted: 2005-01-18 2:26 pm   Permalink

When I was in Boston, it had to be Newbury Street Comics as it was the only place that sold records by the hardcore scene at that time. I'll never forget walking around once with my parents and hearing my dad going, 'Bad Brains! Dead Kennedy's! Throbbing Gristle!'
Incredible, mindblowing selection of music back then. Nowaday's it seems to have more gee-gaws than music, but last time I went, I saw the Folk Implosion play in-store, picked up some CD's and a cool hand-carved Tiki, so that can't be bad.

In the UK, the Rough Trade Shop is still going strong in it's two London locations. It's always packed, and the customers tend to go away having spent what seems like a months wages on obscure vinyl, so I doubt it's in any danger of going out of business.

Trader Woody

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