Visit These Westchester Record Stores to Buy and Sell Vinyl
Whether you’re an avid collector, need a special present, or are looking to unload a vast collection, here are some of the best record stores in the county.
Vinyl records are hot, and Clockwork Records in Hastings has a great selection.
Setting aside for a moment the quagmire that is debating audio fidelity, it’s indisputable that for a long while compact disc dominated the music industry at the expense of older formats, and vinyl was by and large relegated to a niche market for collectors.
Nowadays you can walk into the average Barnes & Noble and pick up a copy of the Kinky Boots original cast recording for about $30. Clearly there has been a cultural resurgence and we are a hundred percent on-board with this! While die-hard fans of the format may already be aware, we thought we’d do a kindness for the budding audiophiles among us and run down three of the best places in Westchester to buy and sell vinyl records.
Don’t let the name fool you, it’s been 25 years since this used book/music/movie shop opened on Peekskill’s Central Ave. and this Northern Westchester staple has stocked vinyl records since the very beginning. You’ll note a distinct leaning towards old-school rock and jazz, but also a very healthy assortment of genres including world music, classical, lounge, soundtracks, and others. (Pro tip: Ask the clerk at the front to see their top-shelf collectibles hiding in a crate behind the desk.)
Do they buy?
“Selectively,” says store manager and bookseller Andrew Acciaro. “Usually individual [records]; occasionally we’ll do a whole collection.”
Is popularity growing?
“I think it’s sort of a reaction to the Internet as well,” Acciaro says. “Everything is dehumanized into a cloud, and so people love it. College students do and I have lawyers, all sorts of people coming in for albums. They love it for the artwork and the physical ritual of playing it and collecting it.”
With two locations, this mid-county shop has upwards of 40,000 records in stock at any given moment. The flagship Buchanan location has been open a couple of years now, but the more recently opened Hawthorne branch has only been around about eight months according to owner “Big Jim” Gibson.
“The music has always been so important in my life; it’s something I’ll just continue on doing. People will say ‘Vinyl came back,’ but I’ve never stopped selling them in thirty years!”
Do they buy?
“People bring in individual pieces to sell, but most people bring a collection, maybe forty records up to a couple thousand. Most of the time we can’t buy the whole collection because they have a lot we already have in stock.”
Is there some truly inimitable quality to vinyl sound? Is that real?
“Yeah, I have a story I tell about my dog, Molly,” Gibson says, already chuckling. “The first pressing of Sgt. Pepper by the Beatles has something at the end of the record: Paul McCartney wanted something for his dog so he blew a dog whistle for 30 seconds. I was playing it one day and Molly starts barking, just going crazy. I mentioned it to my friend and he says, ‘Well, have you tried the CD?’
“Played the CD and nothing from Molly. There’s still 30 seconds of silence at the end, but nothing. So there is a depth of sonic sound on the record that is not on the CD. My dog proved it scientifically!”
Got in a nice collection of original UK #imports this is #thestandout #thebeatles #revolver #parlophone with #differentmix #drrobert #pmc7009 test played both sides VG/ VG nice cover small og owners name on Ringo xex 606-1 on side 2 deadwax #igrecordcollectors #beatles #beatlesmono #johnlennon #paulmccartney #georgeharrison #ringostarr #thefabfour #thefab4 #britishinvasion #desertislanddiscs
Down county, any audiophile will eventually find themselves in this haven of milk crates and dust sleeves. Just a few minutes from the Hastings Metro-North stop, it’s one of the largest stocks of new and used vinyl albums around, along with a few $1 CDs here and there.
“Vinyl is still a highly niche hobby and makes up less than 10 percent of ‘music sales,’” says shop owner Mike James, “but considering there is basically zero market for CDs, it will always be viable for audiophiles.”
He adds, “When you are listening to a CD or digital recording the sound is compressed to fit the format. That being said, I am not a vinyl purist, although I personally love the actual package of the album with cover art etc.”
Do they buy?
“We only buy collections, unless it’s a really collectible LP,” James says.
We’ve got a beaten-up copy of Goodbye Yellow Brick Road sitting at home. Is it worth anything?
“I just want to set the ‘record’ straight,” James says. “Most people looking to sell their collections either A) have stuff so far damaged it has zero value (but it gives them a false sense that holding on to it will mean a big payday), or B) believe you are ‘ripping them off.’ This is a direct result of all the ‘made up’ reality shows like American Pickers. 99 percent of all vinyl has absolutely zero resale value, even if it is a popular artist.”