Sunday, October 16, 2016

The Raymond Rasberry Singers

Artist: The Raymond Rasberry Singers
LP: He Doeth All Things Well
Song: "Drive Him Away Lord"
[ listen ]
Song: "The Chariot's Coming"
[ listen ]

If you ask me, some record stores should be required to call themselves 'record museums' instead. These are the stores that stick prices on their LPs that are so hilariously high, you just have to assume the people running the shop have never stepped inside another regular record store before—and they've certainly never browsed through the dollar vinyl at any of their local neighborhood thrift stores.

When a store's barrel-bottom 'bargain' price for an LP is $8 and you're asked to fork over $10 or more for thrift store staples like this one, or this one, or this...well then you're not actually in a record store at all. You're in a museum. Sadly, you might actually find really neat records in the bins at the museum—like this one for example, or this one—but they'll be priced at $45, $75, or even $100, which of course no normal person should ever be willing to pay. You'll often find a date included on the LP's price tag that shows when the record was put into stock, so you can see for yourself that these outlandishly-priced records have been languishing in the bins for six, seven, or eight years or more, with nobody getting to hear them. And since the prices are never reduced, you can return there six, seven, or eight years later to marvel at the exact same vinyl exhibit that will still be on display. I hate record museums, and I just want to slap the morons who run them.

If you're the record-hoarding curator of a record museum, but you actually do want people to purchase and enjoy the music in your store, it's an easy problem to fix. Just ask the guy who runs Black Dot Records in Buffalo, a terrific little vinyl boutique on the northwest side of town. You'll find arrival dates on the price tags of the used records there, and if an LP has been in the bins for 10 months or more, it's automatically 50% off. If an album has been sitting in the bins for over 15 months, then the discount is 75%. It's smart, it's simple, it's fair, and it gets the records out of the store and onto people's record players at home. If I lived in Buffalo, I would always start my record hunting here

[ Black Dots Records' discount pricing structure ]

This 1960 gospel LP by The Raymond Rasberry Singers had been at Black Dots since January of 2016, so I didn't actually get a discount. But it was marked at just $3.99 anyhow, so they're not peddling their vinyl at museum-piece prices to begin with. There's no listening station available, but Josh, the owner of the place, offered to play some tracks from the albums I was interested in on the system in the store. I knew I'd be buying Ray Rasberry's record two seconds after the needle hit the groove, since I'd struck gospel gold!

The Raymond Rasberry Singers on YouTube:

[ Black Dots Independent Record Boutique — Buffalo, NY ]

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