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Record shops & Record Fairs in London and the South East


orbscure
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Super Wammer

With it being a nice day, I decided to make the relatively short trip to West Norwood to visit an outlet that I've known about for quite some time but for whatever reason, it hasn't shown up on my radar. However, a chance conversation with the owner Michael regarding an LP he had that I was after prompted me to visit... 

The Book & Record Bar
Address: 20 Norwood High Street, London  SE27 9NR
Website: https://www.bookandrecordbar.co.uk
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thebookandrecordbar

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Situated right next to West Norwood train station, this dual book & vinyl store is also easily accessible via several London bus routes. As should be visible in my photo above, the building itself was a pub for 140 years, so when they took it over they wanted to keep that look.

Once inside, rather than being met by a jovial landlord wanting to ply you with the pop of your choice, you're met by the owner Michael with racks and racks jam packed with vinyl. In addition containers containing more of the black stuff can be found underneath these racks at floor level. Sorting in simply by genre and all tastes are catered for. Stock is a mixture of new releases and 2nd hand and prices appeared to be about par for the course. Even though I only scratched the surface of what was on display, there was still plenty to tickle my fancy and ultimately starve my wallet of the folding stuff.

As you'll also see if you visit their website link above, this shop also doubles up as a DJ'ing venue where, amongst others, the venerable Dr.LX Paterson of the Orb can be found on a semi regular basis and from where his Radio Orb WNBC shows are broadcast every Thursday too.

Recommend without fail and I'll be heading there again for a longer session, but perhaps I should padlock my wallet before I head out :) 

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Super Wammer

Collectors Record Centres
Address: 89F Woodbridge Road, Guildford, GU1 4QD
Website: https://collectors-records-centre.business.site
Discogs: https://www.discogs.com/seller/collectorsrecords/profile 

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Another late sunny September day found me heading out towards Guildford, not to visit the excellent Ben's Records, but to spend time in Collectors Record Centres, an outlet that until I was prompted by one of my old work colleague, had complete slipped under my radar.

This is a long slim shop with the normal array of record bins and CD shelves mainly sorted into genres. These are then split down alphabetically with larger artists and groups having their own sections. Plastic storage bins can be found at floor level, but these simply unsorted by genre. Labelling throughout is minimal and shows the price, so you need to check vinyl condition before parting with any money. As with most record stores i visit, higher priced items can be found along the wall and the proprietor was friendly and helpful. 

Prices were mixed, as was the variety of material available. Second hand vinyl was displayed next to new sealed reissues but I made full use of a sale bin, which were individually priced at £3 each, were available at 10 CD's for £10. Charity shop prices in a dedicated record shop are always welcome and I was just about able to find enough to take advantage of the deal. A similar arrangement was available for vinyl, but I didn’t check that out this time.

As with Ben's Records and the regular record fair, Guildford is a vibrant shopping location where a better half can lose himself/herself in the time your sorting through the music available. Parking is plentiful and a regular train service is available and even if it didn't have these record outlets, its a great place to visit and I for one will be visiting the Collectors Record Centres again when I'm back there :) 

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  • 2 months later...
Super Wammer

Been a bit quiet on the record shop odyssey, but made a shortish trip to Guildford today and made a quick visit to their regular record fair... I wasn’t able to spend as much time there as I’d liked, but it was quiet and easy to get to the various tables...

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Whilst there, it was good to catch up with Jack/Non-smoking Man, who was not only selling a nice selection of the black stuff at very competitive prices (thanks for the discount Jack) he also had some kit setup which was sounding very nice indeed... the powered Adam A5 monitors do an impressive job for their size :) 

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The last fair before Christmas is on Saturday 21st December, so why not drag the better half along under the pretence of doing some last minute Christmas shopping and act all surprised that there’s  a record fair on and slip in for a hunt... it’s win/win 👍

Edited by orbscure
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hi Pete, according to Jack, I just missed you today.  Was in Guildford for Xmas shopping and popped into the fair in the morning and again just before it closed.  it was a bit quiet today so was nice and relaxed.  I hoovered up a bag full of records, including plenty of MFP's finest for my parents, so very happy  😀 .  It's a great event though prices are certainly on the up compared to a few years ago, reflecting the renewed interest in vinyl. However compared to buying new, it is still a no brainer, and much more fun!.  I bought over 20 LPs for the cost of about 4 newies.  

As usual, the £1 bargain bins yielded some gems from Glen Campbell, Neil Diamond, Dean Martin and even Nana!  My parents will be rocking (though maybe in the corner) 😃.

I did manage to resist the Rollers though😉 

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Super Wammer

Its always the way Graham, I wasn't there very long and seeing how packed Ben's was when I popped in, I didn't stay there very long either... I am planning to visit again on the 21st December and will ensure I have much more time to root through the boxes :) 

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  • 1 month later...
Super Wammer

Went to Soho today and found 3 record shops in a few yards of each other.

IMG_20200118_112047.thumb.jpg.82b87d1adfe4ac026f4556064d1d1dbb.jpgIMG_20200118_112751.thumb.jpg.ec77636823815a3a451887bd66d380ad.jpgIMG_20200118_112842.thumb.jpg.e0189301161948b0fea126a1dc1ef6c7.jpg

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Super Wammer

Having had a chilly day by the seaside in Brighton today, I managed to find some limited time to take in the following four record shops dotted around the popular lanes area... 

Wax Factor Records
Address: 24 Trafalgar St, Brighton BN1 4EQ
Website: http://www.thewaxfactor.com

1991582783_2020-01-2018_22_26.thumb.jpg.e9699515bcf889eb6178b7f5d23df7f8.jpg

This is a mix bag of an outlet, dedicated not only to music, but also including large selections of non-music literature... all of which is packed into a long slim shop with not much space to manoeuvre. There are large selections of alphabetically listed vinyl down the tight isles, as well as copious amounts of genre/alphabetically listed CD's too. A small passage way into the next unit housed quite a large selection of 7" singles.... if these float your boat.

Cult Hero Records
Address: 16 Brighton Pl, Brighton BN1 1HJ
Website: https://www.cultherobrighton.co.uk

393093169_2020-01-2018_21_52.jpg.ee61b8d60bace6f40305896627d02e4c.jpg

This is a new vinyl pressing shop, with light airy atmosphere and easy to browse genre related bins. There was a wide variety of material and a nice splattering of sale material, from which I deposited £13 for a repress of the Who's Who Next...

Across the Tracks
Address: 110 Gloucester Rd, Brighton BN1 4AF
Website: http://www.acrossthetracksrecords.com (not working)
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/acrossthetracksrecords

18674042_2020-01-2018_22_10.jpg.1193e05031d898abccc936418c374545.jpg

This is a good old traditional spit'n'sawdust shop, with crates and crates of vinyl covering multiple genres covering every taste, which are well sorted by major artists. Rarer and more expensive vinyl was pinned to the wall in protective plastic sleeves. There were also crates of unsorted music magazine at floor level... but to really do justice to what was available, you'd need to spend more than the 10 minutes I was able to allot during this visit. Definitely one for a more detailed root next time I'm down that neck of the woods...

Resident Music
Address: 28 Kensington Gardens, Brighton BN1 4AL
Website: http://www.resident-music.com

565497986_2020-01-2018_23_02.jpg.f7a8657fe44f5a6611ab4da159743781.jpg

This is another new vinyl and CD outlet, with large amounts of new press vinyl well presented in a light, airy and modern shop. Large, easy to access bins are genre, then alphabetically labelled, albeit, many of the lesser artists/groups are not listed individually. There were also several "less than a tenner" boxes dotted around but none of the vinyl tickled my fancy. Prices were around the same of those I see in similar record shops up in London, which given the cost rent for large units on Brighton's lanes must command, really doesn't surprise me.

To end this update... there appears to be quite a large selection of record shops in Brighton... take a look at this link to see these and others listed... so as Brighton isn't a bad place to take the better half so that he/she can totter off and explore the shopping whilst you seek out that much sought after release... its another win/win :) 

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  • 1 year later...

Interesting, Im just starting to get into vinyl and actually live a 5 min walk literally around the corner to Crazy beat records in Upminster. Been here for a few years and despite walking past 100s of times - never been in!! I will do so and report back

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On 20/01/2020 at 23:03, orbscure said:

Having had a chilly day by the seaside in Brighton today, I managed to find some limited time to take in the following four record shops dotted around the popular lanes area... 

Wax Factor Records
Address: 24 Trafalgar St, Brighton BN1 4EQ
Website: http://www.thewaxfactor.com

1991582783_2020-01-2018_22_26.thumb.jpg.e9699515bcf889eb6178b7f5d23df7f8.jpg

This is a mix bag of an outlet, dedicated not only to music, but also including large selections of non-music literature... all of which is packed into a long slim shop with not much space to manoeuvre. There are large selections of alphabetically listed vinyl down the tight isles, as well as copious amounts of genre/alphabetically listed CD's too. A small passage way into the next unit housed quite a large selection of 7" singles.... if these float your boat.

Cult Hero Records
Address: 16 Brighton Pl, Brighton BN1 1HJ
Website: https://www.cultherobrighton.co.uk

393093169_2020-01-2018_21_52.jpg.ee61b8d60bace6f40305896627d02e4c.jpg

This is a new vinyl pressing shop, with light airy atmosphere and easy to browse genre related bins. There was a wide variety of material and a nice splattering of sale material, from which I deposited £13 for a repress of the Who's Who Next...

Across the Tracks
Address: 110 Gloucester Rd, Brighton BN1 4AF
Website: http://www.acrossthetracksrecords.com (not working)
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/acrossthetracksrecords

18674042_2020-01-2018_22_10.jpg.1193e05031d898abccc936418c374545.jpg

This is a good old traditional spit'n'sawdust shop, with crates and crates of vinyl covering multiple genres covering every taste, which are well sorted by major artists. Rarer and more expensive vinyl was pinned to the wall in protective plastic sleeves. There were also crates of unsorted music magazine at floor level... but to really do justice to what was available, you'd need to spend more than the 10 minutes I was able to allot during this visit. Definitely one for a more detailed root next time I'm down that neck of the woods...

Resident Music
Address: 28 Kensington Gardens, Brighton BN1 4AL
Website: http://www.resident-music.com

565497986_2020-01-2018_23_02.jpg.f7a8657fe44f5a6611ab4da159743781.jpg

This is another new vinyl and CD outlet, with large amounts of new press vinyl well presented in a light, airy and modern shop. Large, easy to access bins are genre, then alphabetically labelled, albeit, many of the lesser artists/groups are not listed individually. There were also several "less than a tenner" boxes dotted around but none of the vinyl tickled my fancy. Prices were around the same of those I see in similar record shops up in London, which given the cost rent for large units on Brighton's lanes must command, really doesn't surprise me.

To end this update... there appears to be quite a large selection of record shops in Brighton... take a look at this link to see these and others listed... so as Brighton isn't a bad place to take the better half so that he/she can totter off and explore the shopping whilst you seek out that much sought after release... its another win/win :)

Brighton has always been full of 2nd hand dealers. Especially north laines. Lived in centre of North laines in Brighton in the 80's.  Resident is as you say is new vinyl, good selection, great staff. Been there a long time though, mainly selling CD's until about 5 years ago.

The best 2nd hand record shop in Brighton is Viva Vinyl  records & cafe ,63 Queen Victoria avenue, Hove.  They have thousands of vinyl, most of which he has to keep elswhere, because there is so much of it. If you ask him he will get you it.

Edited by hiesteem
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24 minutes ago, hiesteem said:

Brighton has always been full of 2nd hand dealers. Especially north laines. Lived in centre of North laines in Brighton in

80's.  Resident is as you say new vinyl, good selection, great staff. Been there a long time though, mainly selling CD's until about 5 years ago.

Was in Brighton a few weeks back and had a happy day tramping round all the new and used vinyl. Fortunately we went by train, so I was a bit restricted in what I could carry. That at least removed the joint temptations of the record shops and antique shops.

Fantastic place though...

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18 hours ago, rabski said:

Was in Brighton a few weeks back and had a happy day tramping round all the new and used vinyl. Fortunately we went by train, so I was a bit restricted in what I could carry. That at least removed the joint temptations of the record shops and antique shops.

Fantastic place though...

Hi Richard , yes Bton offers a lot. Very colourful city. Early 2000 was it's bohemian best. I used to search the cd/record shops, clothes boutiques and grab lunch and book a table in the Komedia to see up and coming acts, Amy Winehouse being one of the more well known.

There were so many jazz and folk artists that played there  it really was great fun.

I can't recommend Viva vinyl in Queen Victoria avenue, Hove,  highly enough.  Their prices are reasonable and Julie and her husband can get hold of most albums . Their number is on their website.

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Still havent had the chance to venture into Crazy Beat, however did visit Hey Joe Music & Coffee in Brentwood earlier https://www.instagram.com/heyjoemusicuk/

Small shop however reasonably priced and some decent sale offers. Picked up Pixies Le Tromp Monde 30th anniversary for £15.

Given the size and therefore limitations on stock, I wouldnt travel from afar but worth a look if in the area.

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Super Wammer
4 minutes ago, Barbour81 said:

Given the size and therefore limitations on stock, I wouldnt travel from afar but worth a look if in the area.

Thanks for the details... what with COVID and now being self employed, chances of me finding and visiting anywhere new at present are pretty slim. Having said that, I now work near Kingston in SW London and a couple of local shops are on my radar... so watch this space :)

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