Everyday is Record Store Day in New York City


Published: May 5, 2010

Missed Record Store Day 2010? Don’t worry. More exclusive releases and in-store performances await you next April. Until then, show some love for your favorite record stores during the other 364 days of the year and put food on the tables of your favorite, lesser-known bands. Don’t be fooled—newfound appreciation for vinyl records and the indie stores that carry them isn’t a trend born purely out of some phony desire for hipster-cool.  The vinyl discs really do look (massive artwork and liner notes) and sound (warmth and clarity) better in a variety of ways, and stores where you buy—yes, buy—music offer benefits you might have never imagined. Though vinyl sales are on the rise, they’ve always been a favorite among underground acts and music fanatics, so go see what all the fuss is about! Here are three record stores minutes from the Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC) campus that are sure to cater to the appetites of both weary first-timers and the hungriest, experienced record collectors.THE ECLECTIC RECORD GEEK GETAWAY
Other MusicDuring its history, Other Music has achieved a cult status as one of the greatest indie record stores around, continually stocking local and experimental bands’ records alongside the classics. And it has outlasted chains like Tower Records, which once occupied a spot in the same neighborhood, giving the store its “other” name and reputation. While many record stores in the city are specialized for old vinyl fetishists, stocking only classic rock records, or for DJs, stocking only hip-hop, Other Music offers jazz, rock, experimental, indie, hip-hop, classical, funk and much more. Plus they have a large selection of new and used CDs, if a turntable’s not in your future.

One of the greatest things about Other Music is its eagerly curating staff.  For most music fans, alphabetical order is as interesting as the search for music gets. But at Other Music, records are painstakingly grouped and organized by their relationship to one another, their influences, and their origins. Sure, there are boxes of LPs from “A” to “Z,” if you know exactly what you want, but most people will use iTunes or Amazon if they’re not looking for anything beyond a new single or a familiar album. Record stores, however, are all about discovery, and Other Music’s inventory system will find a connection between the band you like and another indie LP, an imported Japanese punk 45-rpm, and that old blues record that’s sold out everywhere else in the city.

If you can’t stop by the store anytime soon, check out www.othermusic.com, where the shop now offers your favorite records on mp3, and give your cash to a worthier cause than iTunes.

How to Get There:
 Take the A train from 59th Street downtown to Broadway-Lafayette. Head to 15 E. 4th Street
Store Hours: Monday-Friday 12 p.m.-9 p.m.; Saturday 12 p.m.-8 p.m.; Sunday 12 p.m.-7 p.m.
More Info: (212) 477-8150

Generation Records

If you lean towards all things New York City punk, and other skuzzy rock from the last 60 years, Generation Records has you covered. In the West Village, this two-floor paradise is a neighborhood favorite and a cartoon of every record store you’ve ever imagined. Floor to ceiling posters: Check. Mohawked customers with bootlegs in hand: Check. Big-haired cashiers in leather: Check. As you enter, you’ll be greeted with mountains of CDs on street level. Used and new discs, EPs, live albums, bootlegs. Rock, punk, hardcore, metal, ska, surf, industrial, new wave, rockabilly, soundtracks and plenty more. Generation’s got it all. Go down the stairs to the basement and you’ll find their extensive vinyl collection. Like the CDs upstairs, their racks of LPs are packed and varied. Look up to find some of the real vinyl treasures and rarities Generation offers, decorating the walls surrounding the small space. Then, before you leave, check out the other side of the room for an array of rock and punk T-shirts, so next time you stop by the punk shop, you can look the part.

How to Get There: Take the A train from 59th Street downtown to W. 4th Street – Washington Sq. Head East towards Macdougal Street then turn right onto Thompson Street. The store is at 210 Thompson Street
Store Hours: Monday-Thursday, Sunday 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Friday, Saturday 11 a.m.-11 p.m.
More Info: (212) 254-1100

Westsider Records

Just blocks away from campus, this tiny institution is a must if you favor the sounds of jazz, classical, and opera. What the store lacks in space, it makes up for with its unmatched record collection. A perfect neighbor to Lincoln Center and its patrons, you won’t find any rock posturing here. Instead, you’ll get a refreshing mix of music long abandoned by most commercial radio and TV and the people who still embrace it. FCLC junior and Westsider Records employee Ray Saada is accustomed to the diverse characters that keep the niche store afloat. “We get opera stars, actors, dancers, first chairs in symphonies, conductors, directors, even celebrities,” Saada said. Local celebrities, including Ethan Hawke, a jazz fan, and Richard Dreyfuss, on a hunt for famed Austrian composer Gustav Mahler’s symphonies, have perused the store’s record selection. So if rock, hip-hop and other popular tastes aren’t your thing, come join the musical refugees who call Westsider home.

How to Get There:
 Walk! Or take the 1, 2, or 3 from Lincoln Center Station uptown to 72nd Street. Westsider is at 233 W. 72nd Street
Store Hours: Monday-Friday, Sunday 11 a.m.-6:30 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
More Info: (212) 874-1588