We asked Ken Chrisien at Acme and Dan DuChaine at Rushmor - both in Bay View - and Luke Lavin at Bull's Eye, on the East Side, about how the recession affected the business, about Record Store Day and more. Their answers might surprise you.
Despite the loss of some great indie record shops over the years, record stores are not dead. In fact, one is opening soon in Bay View, right up the street from what is likely the longest-lived record shop in town, Rush-Mor. Ken Chrisien, better known to local music fans as WMSE DJ Shopkeeper Ken, is living up to his on-air moniker and opening Acme Records and Music Emporium soon at 2341 S. Kinnickinnic Ave.
Though it's been in the works for a little while, Ken Chrisien, also known as Shopkeeper Ken, has officially announced the opening of his new Bay View record shop.
In honor of the fourth annual Record Store Day on Saturday, April 16, 2011, we dig into the archives to salute indie record stores with this article. Spending an afternoon at Bull's Eye Records, working alongside owner Luke Lavin as a clerk, I'd come full circle back to my first job ... in a record store. And, no, its nothing like "High Fidelity."
I was saddened to see that Atomic Records will close in February, but not entirely surprised. Let's face it, if Tower tanked and Virgin closed a downtown Chicago megastore before there was even an economic crisis, how can we expect Rich Menning to weather the storm?
Saturday is Record Store Day in the U.S. and in Milwaukee, local shops like Atomic Records, RushMor, Bull's Eye and Exclusive Company celebrate the joys of recorded music stamped into vinyl or encoded onto CDs.