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Favorite Record Stores In Michigan

Discussion in 'Detroit, MI' started by shellytakeabow, Sep 3, 2016.

  1. shellytakeabow

    shellytakeabow Well-Known Member

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    What are some of your favorite record stores in MI? I just moved back and have been trying to find the best place to go. So far, I'm a fan of Peoples Records. Where is your go to?
     
  2. ranbalam

    ranbalam Well-Known Member

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    @shellytakeabow - Welcome back to Michigan! Sorry for the delayed response, I don't check this local thread much.

    Anyway, Dearborn Music is probably my favorite. They have a ton of both new and used records, fair pricing on the new and some really good pricing on the used stuff. Stormy Records (right down the street) is worth a stop, decent selection and a friendly staff. Hello Records in Corktown is cool; very small but so much used stuff crammed in there, you can crate dig forever.
    Found Sound in Ferndale is another good stop.
    As I type this I remembered a new favorite - Melodies and Memories in Eastpointe. I went there on RSD this year for the first time ever and was blown away by the size of the place, SO much stuff. And an impressive lunchbox collection! My friends and I already decided that place is going to be our first stop for RSD 2017.
    And if you get up north to the TC area, RPM Records is huge...tons of old and new.
    Hope this helps!
     
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  3. shellytakeabow

    shellytakeabow Well-Known Member

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    Thanks. I will check all of those out. I did swing by Hello Records a few weeks ago. Very small but there were some good finds there
     
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  4. hammertime

    hammertime Well-Known Member

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    Besides those already mentioned:
    Street Corner Music
    Encore in Ann Arbor
     
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  5. DarthGummiDucky

    DarthGummiDucky New Member

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    By far my favorite place is Underground Sounds in Ann Arbor. It's a small shop but they have lots of options and the people are nice. I frequently find it cheaper than Amazon and if they don't have something they will special order it.

    http://store.ugsounds.com/
     
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  6. Rob_Feature

    Rob_Feature Active Member

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    Happy to find a Michigan forum!
    I've been to about every store in the SE Michigan area...my faves (in order) are:

    - Street Corner Music (oak park?) - Go here for Soul and cheap rock. Old school style record shop. I've never left here without buying multiple records.

    - Found Sound (ferndale) - Best staff, period. Chat with them when you're in there. Otherwise good for alt rock, lots of good 45s.

    - Melodies & Memories (eastpointe) - They have EVERYTHING (and, like, 5 copies of everything). You can find good stuff cheap. If you can't find it, ask them to open the back room (not always open) with $1 stuff and all the dance/electronic.

    - Encore (ann arbor) - I'm not an underground sounds fan. It's small, everything is new (therefore expensive). I go here instead, just a block down the street...almost all used and they get some good stuff in. endless aisles of random records you've never heard of. This is the place to go for jazz, classical, world, and other offbeat genres

    hope that helps!
     
  7. MotorCityWax

    MotorCityWax Member

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    Underground Sounds is my favorite for the balance of selection and pricing. UHF in Royal Oak is ok but expensive. Third Man is a fun novelty with the pressing plant behind it.
     
  8. MotorCityWax

    MotorCityWax Member

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    Oh yeah, Street Corner is great too!
     
  9. Rob_Feature

    Rob_Feature Active Member

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    Somehow I didn't mention my current favorite: Broadway Records in Lake Orion
    Now...you have to have certain expectations when you go in there:
    1. Unless you live over that way, it's kinda a long way from everything. I find it worth the drive
    2. It's the size of a shoebox. They don't have a zillion records. It's quite literally the size of a living room. However:
    3. Some of the best records in my collection have come from here. The stuff I find isn't exactly "rare" (ie. in terms of high end collectible) but it's 'common' stuff that's never seen in record shops (stuff you tend to see constantly online)...
    4. The prices are awesome...I've picked up some GREAT records for half (or less) what they'd charge for them in Royal Oak. For example, I've been wanting the Phil Spector Christmas vinyl for a while but never wanted to pay almost $30 for it. I picked it up here, played once (by the owner of the shop) for $10. Pair that with a NM copy of Help for another $10, and a bunch of dollar records that I paid 25 cents for...and I was a happy man.
    5. They're cash only.
    6. The guy that runs it is super chill...super nice. Not overly talkative but very friendly. He'll deal on prices if you buy a bunch.
    7. You'll probably be the only person in there
    8. Check the hours before you go. If you go around lunch, expect them to be closed while he's out to find something to eat. (total old school flavor)

    I just love this shop...I recommend checking it out if you're ever in the area.
     
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  10. marshall

    marshall Active Member

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    Broadway in LO is a cool little joint. You never know what will be in their recent arrival bin. They usually close by 4 pm which is a little odd so it's hard to get in there.

    Solo in Royal Oak is a fun place to pick used stuff. The ladies that run the shop are awesome. Their prices are very fair on both selling and buying used.

    I just hit up Green Light in K'zoo a few weeks ago. Very nice shop. The owner/manager was super cool and played the used records I grabbed to make sure they sounded clean since I don't live in the area (Old INXS and The Cult from a recent awesome 80's/90's haul he just got in). Very fair prices too.

    Underground in AA is also good. Small shop but very fair on prices for both new and used. I picked up a sweet Coltrane album there new for sub-Amazon pricing.
     
  11. ranbalam

    ranbalam Well-Known Member

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    I went in there for my first time about a month ago...for a small store, they had a lot of great stuff. I got Sinkane-Mean Love there; sealed and sub-Amazon pricing as well.
     
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  12. Rob_Feature

    Rob_Feature Active Member

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    Well, I got burned a couple times this week...I don't want to leave a bad review on Yelp or anything, but since we're amongst 'friends' here ;) ....

    First, I've been to Dearborn Music a ton of times but never bought anything because their prices seem pretty high (and the selection is 'just OK', IMO). I finally bought something...I spent $30 on used stuff, which to be honest, is a fortune to me :). Got some good old Stax soul and some surf stuff. I get home only to find that the stickers they use and PUT DIRECTLY ON THE JACKETS are near-impossible to remove without either tearing the cover or leaving reside/staining that doesn't come off. I'm not the kind of guy to do this, but I actually called them and said "this totally sucks"...there's stickers other stores use that peel off cleanly but apparently they don't really care enough to use them. Just blew my mind that someone would put these on 50+ year old record jackets that are in good condition (rant over...sorry, I was so mad)

    Then, just 24 hours later I buy a record from Finders Keepers in Plymouth (technically I purchased from their booth at Town Peddler). Legendary used selection at this place and the prices show it. I popped more for a record than I normally would, took it home...it skipped on the first song. I took it back within 18 hours. The owner (who wasn't the one who originally rang me up) more or less started with "sorry, but too bad. it's a used record." Then went on to say that the official policy was, more or less, "unless I know you and you buy a lot from me, if a record is bad, there's nothing I can do". So I could have dropped $100 on a record and if it skipped, that was his stance. Blew my mind. I sell tons of used stuff and if someone has a skip that I didn't catch, I have to refund them...no ifs/ands/buts. That's just the nature of the business.

    The problem is really that he doesn't play test anything and he's, apparently, not good at diagnosing issues visually...he more or less cleans them and puts them on the floor without any real concern for what happens when you play them. (he told me he doesn't even own a turntable!!). I don't expect a shop to play test everything, but I do expect that if I pay real money for a record, you either will guarantee it or you play tested it (or something!!)

    Anyway...after calmly explaining for a while that his policy was horrible and point-blank telling him I couldn't ever buy from him again (his response "you never bought from me before, so..."), he gave me some money back (not all) and told me to keep the record. So, to be fair, he seems like an OK guy and he eventually caved in on a refund...but I don't think he would have in most cases. It took ALOT of talking and explaining...

    More or less, just a couple words of caution (because I almost certainly won't shop at either of these places again):

    1. Make Dearborn Music remove your used price tags before you leave (so if they rip the jacket, it's their fault)
    2. Inspect anything you buy from Finders Keepers really well...because if there's a problem, you're hosed.

    PS: I'm not trying to be malicious against these places...but I do think other collectors in the area should know about bad experiences. I certainly would want to know what to look out for!

    PPS: Maybe I'm the only one that will find this funny, but while talking with the Finders Keepers guy, he referenced that "my friend who runs Dearborn music..." I couldn't freakin' believe it...my 2 experiences were now mystically linked.
     
  13. marshall

    marshall Active Member

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    Good to know about Finders Keepers. I seem them post on CL often but I've never gone over there or to their booth.

    Dearborn - maybe the best selection around but yeah, a little pricey, and that sucks about the stickers. They will take used records back that are defective within a certain time frame which is nice. Most reputable shops have a 7-14 return policy on used stuff which is huge.
     
  14. siremobunny

    siremobunny Well-Known Member

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    Probably not the area of Michigan you're looking for, but I've recently discovered that Electric Kitsch in Bay City is a nice little record store with reasonable prices.
     
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  15. marshall

    marshall Active Member

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    Agreed!
     
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  16. ranbalam

    ranbalam Well-Known Member

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    @Rob_Feature Yeah, Finder's Keepers does have an amazing selection of stuff I don't see anywhere else. (with huge price tags on a lot of it.) I bought Rain Dogs there. Well, I traded for it. I don't feel like I got a stellar deal but didn't rip myself off either, but I've wanted the record for a long time so I jumped on it. Guess what? It skips on the second side. Obviously I'm not thrilled and will talk to him next time I go in. I really want to like that place, it's 3 blocks from my house...but he's not batting 1.000 with me, that's for sure.
     
  17. swamp

    swamp Well-Known Member

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    That experience sounds awful. There are shades and degrees to those kinds of customer/retailer disputes, so I don't want to paint any side as 100% wrong but I will say that PayPal/online marketplaces do a great job of keeping retailers honest when it comes to returns. If you buy an album on Discogs or check out with PayPal, there is a clear set of policies for returns that don't change according to the mood that one person feels on the day you walk in their shop to make a return.
     
  18. Rob_Feature

    Rob_Feature Active Member

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    Thanks for the reminder...after reading this I was in the area and stopped at Solo. Scored a Stax pressing of Dock of the Bay for $5. Nice! And..(making it pertinent to this conversation) they stamp your receipt with a 14 day (?) guarantee. So chalk another one up for the good guys.

    Yeah, the guy at Finders Keepers was like "Name one store that takes used records back..." (I drew a blank..but I knew most did). Good to know about Dearborn music for this....

    Well, that sucks for both of us then...but (no offense), it's nice to hear I'm not alone...

    Yup, absolutely. I'll be the first to admit that you shouldn't believe just my side of the story...but what you say here is exactly right on. I sell on Discogs alot and the setup keeps things honest. I didn't like it at first but I HAVE to refund if there's a problem...which I now think is just good for everyone.
     
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  19. marshall

    marshall Active Member

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    Dropped into Vertigo Records in Grand Rapids yesterday afternoon. Great shop. Extensive used and new stuff. Friendly staff. I ended up grabbing a bunch of new titles I've been chasing around for awhile at Amazon-ish or below prices. I was happy because the Detroit area shops either don't ever have them in stock or want way too much. I may have saved a dollar on one of them via Amazon but I'd rather support the local shop. I'd love to dig through the used stuff when I have more time they had a huge selection.
     
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