Sunday, October 15, 2006

RIP..Tower Records

This past week another nail was put in the coffin of the independent music store. After 40 plus years in the music business, Tower Records filed for bankruptcy. I’ve been following the news around this situation for several months now. Tower has been unable to compete with the low prices that are offered by Best Buy, Target, Wal-Mart, and online companies such as Amazon and Though I have always enjoyed going to Tower Records over the years, I have found myself choosing to put off a purchase because of the ridiculous prices that are labeled on the discs. Do I really want to buy a Go Betweens album for 19.99 when I can get on and get the same album for 11.99? Give me a break…I like the independent music store, but I don’t like them to the tune of an extra 8 bucks (an extra 8 bucks at Best Buy will almost buy me another album). Tower has attempted to discount their albums here and there, but normally the discounted price is still higher than Best Buy. I really hate to see the independent music store move toward the grave considering that I spent part of my undergrad years working at such as store. I was educated in a manner I could never have received if I worked at Best Buy or Circuit City. If I worked at those stores, I’d be listening to Papa Roach, Celine Dion, or Britney Spears now. With the death of Tower Records, I question where independent music retail chains will be standing in 5 years. I have a feeling that some stores will remain open, but that they will continue to have to charge high prices. I know that there is a dedicated group of followers who will pay a few extra bucks to buy albums at an independent store, but I think this will eventually die out. Most avid music buyers don’t have tons of disposable income and would rather get more albums at Best Buy than one album at an independent store. Only time will tell, but I think quantity and low prices will win out over the small stores. This is a sad week in my life. There will come a time when I reminisce to my son about small music stores and he will look at me funny and either go to or ask me to drop him by Best Buy. A moment of silence for was fun while it lasted.

Currently Listenining to:
The Young Knives
Voices of Animals and Men
Released on: 8-21-06

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