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  • Record Shopping in London?

    It's been a long time since hit the shops in London but when visiting -- and back then was 3-4 times a year -- always made a beeline for Gramex in Waterloo, Harold Moores and one not listed there (is it still in business?) Nottinghill Gate Records. Roger, the proprietor of Gramex was always charming and I was at his store many years when a collection of records came in from a record critic for the London times. There was among this collection a number of single sided, reviewers press copies of several EMI classical releases. Now in 20-20 hindsight, I wish I had bought all of them. Roger always got a lot of albums in but would never ship! Harold Moore's also always had plenty of LPs around (it was just a short walk from the Tower Records at Picadilly Circus!) but was the pricey store. Nottinghill Gate also had a sizeable amount of records and were marked down a certain number of pence each week they sat there. Found some great bargains there.

    Also did Reckless Records but that was back then mainly rock. Had I known then what I know now, probably would have come away with a lot more rock LPs. Oh well...

    Sadly, many of the old time stores--just like in every city-- like Cheapos, etc. have fallen by the wayside.
    Discover the best shops in London to buy new and second-hand records and CDs.
    Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
    Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
    ________________________________________

    -Magico S5 Mk.2 speakers with SPod feet
    -Goldmund Telos 280 stereo amp
    -Goldmund Mimesis 37S Nextgen preamplifier
    -Doshi V3.0 phonostage
    -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
    -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
    -Lyra Atlas SL Lambda, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MutechHayabusa, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
    -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
    -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 5, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies and Ensemble Power Cords
    -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA platforms.

  • #2
    We started going to London annually almost twenty years ago. Back then there were the many stores that Myles mentioned and even a few more - all specializing in classical recordings.Now sadlly, almot all closed. Quite a few other for non-classical, with bin titles like "garage" or was it "garbage", categories I had no idea what they meant. Today, my record bin hunting is pretty much limited to Notting Hill Gate - where their once huge classical store is now just the upstairs level of their rock store - all their stores are titled with some variation of "Music Exchange". Gramex moved a few blocks away, but I haven't been there recently - the last time, it was almost all CD's. I had a similar experience to Myles at Gramex, where one day I walked in and there were classical records all over the floor. An avid collector had moved to a retirement home, and Roger had bought his entire collection - all the Decca and EMI's were 4GBP each, mostly from the'70's in reallly fine condition. Harold Moore's still exists, bought by a couple of Americans or Canadians. I went a couple of years ago, mostly used CD's, but the records were overpriced in not great condition. Everyone else has closed.

    I do buy a few records through the internet at a few UK shops. I usually visit Dave Parsons, whose runs his high quality operation (classicalvinyl.com). Dave is my main source of the more rare titles (that is just about all I have on my want list of Decca and EMI's) and I pick up the records I order when I visit him. He is also one of the principals of the Electric Recording Company. I usually have any records I order from other internet shops in the UK shipped to me in London during our stay, to save on postage. Sophia Singer (spiralclassics.com) is one that I continue to order from - I visited Sophia a couple years ago in the north of England - when I was visiting retired Decca engineer Mike Mailes (whom I interviewed extensively for my Decca book) and his wife, who live a couple of towns away from Sophia. Again, most of the great internet and mail order UK classical shops are gone - Glenn Armstrong (who still runs Coup d'Archet), Jonathan Kustow, Phil Rees (RIP), Chris Orchard, and several others that I patronized for years. When we would come home from London each year, we would have several suitcases filled with records. One of the reasons I have 15K records!

    Larry
    Last edited by astrotoy; 02-10-2016, 01:15 PM.
    Analog- VPIClassic3-3DArm,SoundsmithZephyrII+MiyajimaZeroMono, 2xAmpex ATR-102,Doshi3.0,Merrill Trident Master Tape Pre,Herron VTPH-2A
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    • #3
      Originally posted by astrotoy View Post
      We started going to London annually almost twenty years ago. Back then there were the many stores that Myles mentioned and even a few more - all specializing in classical recordings.Now sadlly, almot all closed. Quite a few other for non-classical, with bin titles like "garage" or was it "garbage", categories I had no idea what they meant. Today, my record bin hunting is pretty much limited to Notting Hill Gate - where their once huge classical store is now just the upstairs level of their rock store - all their stores are titled with some variation of "Music Exchange". Gramex moved a few blocks away, but I haven't been there recently - the last time, it was almost all CD's. I had a similar experience to Myles at Gramex, where one day I walked in and there were classical records all over the floor. An avid collector had moved to a retirement home, and Roger had bought his entire collection - all the Decca and EMI's were 4GBP each, mostly from the'70's in reallly fine condition. Harold Moore's still exists, bought by a couple of Americans or Canadians. I went a couple of years ago, mostly used CD's, but the records were overpriced in not great condition. Everyone else has closed.

      I do buy a few records through the internet at a few UK shops. I usually visit Dave Parsons, whose runs his high quality operation (classicalvinyl.com). Dave is my main source of the more rare titles (that is just about all I have on my want list of Decca and EMI's) and I pick up the records I order when I visit him. He is also one of the principals of the Electric Recording Company. I usually have any records I order from other internet shops in the UK shipped to me in London during our stay, to save on postage. Sophia Singer (spiralclassics.com) is one that I continue to order from - I visited Sophia a couple years ago in the north of England - when I was visiting retired Decca engineer Mike Mailes (whom I interviewed extensively for my Decca book) and his wife, who live a couple of towns away from Sophia. Again, most of the great internet and mail order UK classical shops are gone - Glenn Armstrong (who still runs Coup d'Archet), Jonathan Kustow, Phil Rees (RIP), Chris Orchard, and several others that I patronized for years. When we would come home from London each year, we would have several suitcases filled with records. One of the reasons I have 15K records!

      Larry

      Years ago, my Brit audiobuddy took me to two stores in Brighton. At that time, they were shipping most of their stuff to Asia.

      I found another great store in the mid-80s in Edinburgh run by an American ex-pat from Colorado. Unbelievable amount of LPs all for 3 pound each. Actually used to get some LPs by mail from the chap but that connection faded over the years.
      Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
      Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
      ________________________________________

      -Magico S5 Mk.2 speakers with SPod feet
      -Goldmund Telos 280 stereo amp
      -Goldmund Mimesis 37S Nextgen preamplifier
      -Doshi V3.0 phonostage
      -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
      -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
      -Lyra Atlas SL Lambda, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MutechHayabusa, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
      -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
      -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 5, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies and Ensemble Power Cords
      -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA platforms.

      Comment

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