In the early ‘70s, a group of friends started importing the blues and jazz records they wanted to listen to but couldn’t find. Their cottage industry quickly blossomed into 78 Records, which – through its various incarnations, including shifting location five times – is still a great source of alternative, hard-to-find music.
Manager Andrew De Lang, who started working at 78 Records as a 19-year-old in the mid-‘80s, imports vinyl from Europe, England, America and pockets of Australia. Though the store has downsized in recent years (thanks a lot, music downloads and streaming) there are still thousands of new records in store, plus band tees (such as the Ramones and Blink 182), CDs, posters and DVDs.
As well as rare, out-of-print records from iconic bands such as Metallica, Nirvana and Black Sabbath, there’s a great selection of blues and jazz, from ‘20s ragtime to ‘50s Chess Records. Just don’t look for anything top-40-related – it’s not here.
Keep an eye out for the sporadic in-store gigs from local bands such as Little Birdy, Birds of Tokyo, Eskimo Joe, and Bob Evans.