Whenever I go on a trip, I like to check out the local record shop. Why? Because there’s no better place to discover the artistic soul of a place — or to meet cool people. And of course, because sometimes you find great things.
I recently went to Morgantown, West Virginia for a marketing conference at West Virginia University. Before checking into the very cool Chestnut Hotel, I walked down to Retro-tique, a vintage store on Walnut Ave. The store is about 50% vintage vinyl and 50% vintage toys, clothes, electronics and accessories.
Want a quick litmus test to judge the overall awesome-ness of a record store? Well, if you see The Cramps in the used bin, you can pretty much assume you’ve struck solid gold.There was this too… And, oh yeah, a huge wall of vintage electronics. Pretty cool, huh?
Is this a pic of me geeking out over the great selection in the store? No, it’s just a King Crimson record. After I perused the vinyl, I introduced myself to Jillian, the co-owner of the shop. She was a sweetheart, and check out her tattoos! Elvira and Dolly Parton! After some joint fan-girling over the Mistress of the Dark and the Queen of Country Music, she invited me to an art show in town — a tribute to Prince. The show ended up being really great, by the way. The second room of the shop was chock-full of vintage clothes, but what really caught my eye was the horror ephemera. First there was this — a super special edition LaserDisc box set of “Hellraiser.” What a stunning package.
Although I don’t own a LaserDisc player, I love the gate-fold presentation of the film (which, incidentally, is in my top 5 favorite horror flicks of all time). Look at all those photos and liner notes! Plus a copy of the script.
Then there was a stack of posters, including this amazing “Phantasm III” poster signed by Angus Scrimm. And this signed poster featuring art from “Nightbreed.” Then there was this box of VHS tapes, some of which were sealed. “Driller Killer.”
“Nail Gun Massacre.”Goblin, live in concert. I think you get the point. I found myself sitting on the floor, mouth agape, looking at this box of fun stuff.
And, if toys are your thing, Retro-tique had a lot of cool ones — check out the “Ghostbusters” display if you don’t believe me. If you’re in Morgantown, head over. Say hi to Jillian and spend some cash on something cool. I’m a firm believer that we have to support shops like this if we want to have them around in the future.
I can’t share what I actually ended up buying — as my purchases were Father’s Day gifts and that would spoil the fun for my husband. He’s my most devoted reader, after all.