Can Columbus support two new record stores?

I’d seen a new storefront at 2579 N. High St near the Hudson intersection (by Kobo), and I’d heard rumors of a new pop-up record store going in there. DeVille has now confirmed it’s a new pop-up record store from Sour Records’ Steve Louis, appropriately called “Pop-Up Records.” It seems Louis has about 50,000 records he’ll be selling on weekends for $2 apiece at the storefront he’s leasing for a year.

DeVille also mentions another store, Vinyl Frontier, opening in August at 53 E. Gay St. downtown.

Any new place to go crate-digging sounds fun at first mention, but — not to be a Debbie Downer here — how many record stores is too much? I don’t know the finances of all the record shops in town, but I do know Elizabeth’s Records made it public on its Facebook page that the store needed a lot of last-minute help in order to make the rent payment this month. I imagine other stores have experience a similar pinch.

I think it’s great that record stores in Columbus, in general, stick together and help each other out instead of vying to be the only fish in the pond. But with not one, but two new shops opening up, I have a feeling a casualty or two could result. Have we reached the “more the merrier” breaking point?

  • We needed help at Elizabeth’s because the storm and no power put us out on our do or die weekend and sales were soft at our Comfest tent…but, in general, we’re fine! We offer something different than the new stores do (no rock climbing wall…but you will be asked about your cats!). We’re doing fine otherwise, even if summer is a bit slower than the other seasons! Personally, I welcome Steve’s store as well as the rock climbing wall place…we wish them the best of luck!

    • Joel

      Glad to hear it, David.

  • David Baker

    I’d say Steve Louis gets a pass as he’s had his store in brick & mortar or online for quite a few years. As a consumer I say the more the merrier as pricing will be reasonable at every store or they’ll suffer the price. As a record collector and someone who works in service all around town it’s nice to have record stores to drop into wherever I’m at in the city.

  • Chris Wilson

    I think it is great! Nothing wrong with stores turning into the local neighborhood record store. It works for book stores. For those that don’t want to go near campus, Elzabeth’s is a GREAT place to go. From where David, his wife and Elizabeth started their Vinyl Venture…. To now in a brick and mortar store is great! Elizabeth’s uses the Facebook form of Social Media wisely. Usually their postings include new additions, special event announcements, music news and sometimes puts their heart on their sleeve for all to see. That is who they are and I look forward to what their next posting is or their pick of the day on Facebook and I don’t particular use FB that much during the day! Of course there is inventory and pricing, but its also going to be about, service, knowledge and word of mouth. I believe Elizabeth’s will be up there for years to come

  • Nothing wrong with more, maybe it will work, maybe not, as long as the offer something worth going for. What I’d rather see is a vintage electronics store start up. Something with a ton of used gear, turntables, friendly help, maybe even classes on how to use a table, so many people getting into records in the past 3 to 4 years means the hardware side should be seeing a major increase in demand shortly as people realize their Best Buy Ions and low end tables are just not cutting it.