I believe in supporting independent record (and book) stores whenever humanly possible, and resorting to the chains last. However, post-Katrina, most of the chains are gone anyway. So if you're shopping for records in New Orleans, I highly recommend you do it here:
If all else fails, you can try ...
- The Louisiana Music Factory, 210 N. Decatur, New Orleans, LA 70130.
- Located in the French Quarter, this shop is the best in the City for my money, specializing in local sounds. There's a wide selection of New Orleans jazz, plus Cajun, zydeco, R&B, Blues, Gospel, plus international music. New, used, rare and out-of-print LPs, CDs, 45s, 78s. Videos, books, music posters, T-shirts, photographs, sheet music, much more. They frequently feature live, in-store performances of local and touring artists. Open 10-7 daily, plastic accepted, and they do mail order. (504) 586-1094.
- The Mushroom, 1037 Broadway, Uptown (above The Boot).
- Locally owned, student-run, near Tulane University. They specialize in local and particularly alternative music. Lots of "rare live imports" (aka boots), tie-dyes, t-shirts, stickers, posters, tapestries, lots of Dead stuff, etc. Very little vinyl, new and used CDs. Can be a little expensive. I like it, though. Mon-Sat 11a-10p, Sun 1-9p. (504) 866-6065.
- Peaches Records, 408 N. Peters St., New Orleans LA 70116.
- This locally-owned store, defunct for a while, resurrected to take the space vacated by Tower Records. I still haven't been there since they reopened, but it's local, so give 'em a shot.
- Jim Russell's Rare Records, 1837 Magazine.
- Now in its second generation, these guys are a gold mine of 45s. Their long rows of 45s are a treasure chest of New Orleans R&B and rock 'n roll history. They've also got LPs (a million in stock), CDs, cassettes, even 8-tracks! Take an afternoon to browse, chat with the propreitors, and get a booster shot if you've got a dust allergy. Oh, and tuck in your shirt. (504) 522-2602.
- Musica Latina, 4714 Magazine St.
- Specializing in all kinds of Latin music, from all over the world. Owned by longtime New Orleanian transplants Yolanda Estrada Suarez and Juan Suarez, from Honduras and Cuba respectively. Yolanda also has a Latin music program on WWOZ called "Tiene Sabor", Saturdays from 11:30am - 2:00pm. (504) 895-4227.
Online Stores for Louisiana Music (and labels, too)
- Arhoolie Records
- Cajun, zydeco, jazz, blues, country, gospel, ethnic, world, and more. This label released most of Clifton Chenier's catalog, among many others.
- The oldest large-scale CD store on the net, with plenty of Louisiana stuff
- The Louisiana Music Store
- From Offbeat magazine
- The New Orleans Music Store
- Affiliated with Greg Hardison's Louisiana Music Archive and Artists Directory. Fine site.
- Rounder Records
- One of the premier labels for Cajun, zydeco and New Orleans music, and much much more.
- Shanachie Records
- Home of the New Orleans Klezmer All-Stars, and a few other local artists.
This page is dedicated to the memory of two late, lamented
independent New Orleans music stores that are no longer with us ...
Leisure Landing, Magazine near Jefferson, Uptown. R.I.P.
The Metronome, Pleasant St. off Magazine, Uptown. R.I.P.
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Chuck Taggart (e-mail chuck)