The Cheapo Recorxs in Uptown Minneapolis is closing this fall, to be replaced by one of those ofay, mixed use condominium buildings that are starting to choke the neighborhood.
To which many of my readers will say “meh”. Shopping for physical things in stores is passé, were told.
I think it’s a huge loss. Partly it’s because I hate shopping online. Having worked in e-commerce, I don’t trust e-commerce.
More so it’s because, like bookstores – which we are also told are on the way out – they are relics from the time before social media, when people actually had to be social to do things like, you know, buy music and books.
Our devices have convinced many of us that we are always more busy than we used to be, and that more than a few minutes browsing for music — especially something other than an MP3 or stream — is outdated. Why spend even a couple minutes walking down aisles just to find the genre of your choosing when a search bar awaits?
Of course, there are still music stores out there; Hymie’s, The Electric Fetus, and if you’re into hip-hop, Urban Lights are all thriving.
Those are, of course, all “curated” stores – meaning that the music you find is dependent on the taste of the “curator”. Don’t get me wrong – some of those “curators” are excellent.
But how do you replace the broad, sweeping unpredictability of a Cheapo?
And don’t say “on iTunes” or “try Spotify!”. Don’t get me wrong – it’s not like I’ve never downloaded or streamed music. But shopping for our music and books in the same place we do our Facebook cat pictures, our taxes, our blogging? Why not do all of our eating and sleeping in the same place, while were at it?