Reggae music overpowers light chatter in the room where music legends cover the particular walls; Michael Jackson posters, Taylor Swift CDs and Lauryn Hill vinyl records flank a narrow aisle weaving between the rows of entertainment. Baskets filled with incense and hair conditioners sit near the cash register as Williamsbridge’s older residents chat on the shady sidewalk underneath a rumbling 2-train. Friends, neighbors and family joined together to celebrate the particular life of Earl Moodie, owner associated with Moodies Information, who died last September at the age of sixty-nine.
“He opened the shop, the rest is history, ” said his son, Earl Moodie Jr.
Moodies Records, a small music store in Williamsbridge, has persisted despite the particular shift from vinyl in order to digital, plus in the face of big brands like T-Mobile moving into the storefronts that line White Plains Rd. and Westchester Ave.
The locally owned Records-N-Stuff and Tony Ryan Information & Electronics have both disappeared – just two of the Bronx vinyl fabric shops that went out associated with business in the early 2010s. But Moodies is still selling records.
Against a wave of closing independent shops, Moodies holds the line.
Entering an online search for “record store in the particular Bronx” or “Bronx music store” yields two results: Moodies plus Cholo’s Record Shop. Cholo’s sits at the very southern tip of the Bronx, a mere stone’s throw through Manhattan. Looking up other songs shop names, like Cam DVD & Music World, lead to links and contact information for Moodies, not even showing the closed store.
While streaming subscriptions continue to grow–$5 billion according to the Recording Industry Association of America’s mid-year repor t – the problem facing record shops isn’t a lack of interest in plastic. In fact, record sales have increased over 4000% in the past decade, from one million units sold in 2009 to 41. 7 mil units sold in 2021, according to statistica. com.
Independent record stores scattered throughout the country comprised around 52% of the particular market share in 2022 , most often selling rock plus hip-hop albums. Major companies like Amazon , Hot Topic and Urban Outfitters, nonetheless, hold a tight grip around the vinyl market.
But platforms like Amazon fail to highlight the sense of community that independent record shops provide. While algorithms can offer what you “may like, ” the suggestion is a result of data plus analytics, not a person who can “analyze the soulfulness of your music choices, ” said Edward Bilous, Founding Director of the Center for Innovation in the Arts at the Juilliard School.
Vinyl, as a medium, shows the “breakdown associated with the artistic choice – the tender loving care – that was put into the report making process, ” Bilous stated.
The particular word album as we know it dates back to the 19th century, meaning a “collection of individual works with a certain structure in mind, ” he said. This structure became less important within the new digital songs marketplace, exactly where someone may replay the particular one song that they’d like in order to hear without having to listen to the entire body of musical work.
“I think that’s missed in the particular digital world, ” mentioned Bilous, “I don’t think there will be the day where it will be impossible to find vinyl. ”
Moodies Records opened over forty years ago inside 1973, gaining popularity in the late 1980s. The shop instilled itself in the community, hosting meet and greets with artists, gatherings and performances. Stars want Bob Marley, Slick Rick and Ashanti found their way to the particular store, which sits among the crowds of businesses on White Flatlands Rd. Critic Anthony Bourdain featured the shop on an episode associated with his television show Parts Unknown , highlighting Moodies as a building block for hip-hop and reggae. Pierre Barclay, Moodie’s nephew, described the particular store as “the beating heart” of reggae.
“Music helps out. It deals with a lot, ” Barclay said. He explained that will Moodies aims to relieve people of their worries, even if only for the length of an recording. This mission for consumers to practice self care is why the store expanded to selling a few skincare plus haircare products. Moodies is for the mind and body.
Earl Moodie began his career performing in a band, the particular Stepping Stones. His child said that his father “poured everything into” music which was “his life, ” echoing the store’s motto, “music will be life. ” In Williamsbridge, Moodie was more than just a good artist and tastemaker.
“It’s what he was meant to do, ” reflected Moodie Jr., explaining that will Moodie was “very smart” but chose not in order to “go corporate. ” With help from fellow songs enthusiast plus New York City reggae icon Brad Osbourne , Moodie started his nearly fifty year career in the record store. That the store still remains speaks both to his skills as a businessman and his immersion in the particular neighborhood plus music industry.
Moodie was described by family and close friends as “a man from the people” and “ a really good guy. ” Some neighbors trusted him enough to hold onto their own savings as though he were a bank. Moodie Junior. believes that his dad has “good karma. ” One comment on a Facebook post announcing Moodie’s death reads, “he was the true pillar of the local community. ”
As for other record stores in the Bronx, “all of them are gone, ” said Barclay.
“As long as we got vinyl, we’ll be here. ”