Tag Archives: record stores

Calling All Tunehead Sleuths: Can You Identify These 16 Mystery Album Covers from the Woolco Record Department at Argyle Mall, London, Ontario, Canada, June 1966?

WoolcoRecordDeptArgyleMallLondonJune1966The Woolco Record Department at Argyle Mall, East London, Ontario, Canada, June 1966, from the London Free Press’ Pictures From the Past series. (Click on Photo to Enlarge)

What a trip it was to see this photo of one of my old childhood record-hunting locales 40 years after it was snapped!

As a fan of history—especially cultural history from global to local—I always look forward to one of my favourite features in the London Free Press: Pictures From the Past, a weekly installment reprinting photos from the paper’s archives spanning decades.

PFTP ran a photo last June of particular interest to me of the Woolco Record Department at Argyle Mall in 1966. Having grown up in Huron Heights in the ‘60 and ‘70s, Argyle Mall was just a few minutes drive up Clarke Road. Regular trips there with both my parents and other family members means that everything about the place is burned into my memory from youth. Continue reading

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Dear Record Store, I QUIT!: The Most Joyful, Protracted Job Exit of My Life

I Quit Album Spines with Black Bottom MASTER

(NOTE: I will also be publishing some off-series entries on this blog.  File Under: Music Etc.  Photo by VariousArtists)

Ever worked in an abusive hellhole of human toxicity?  Sadly, I’ve had a few of those, including this mid-80s record store stint.  My departure afforded me the opportunity to give some of the love back at them, with my exit strategy planned to inflict maximum pain upon my evil overlords.  However, when the time came, my nightmare of a regional manager had a surprise of her own for me.

It was August 1987 in London, Ontario, and for the previous year I had been managing a store that was part of the XYZ Records chain (as I will call them), following a prior year as an assistant manager at another outlet.

XYZ had been an established, successful music retail chain in Canada since the 1950s.  A few months before I began working for them in July ‘85, XYZ had been sold to a guy who was the middle-aged son of millionaires.  He was also, by all counts, utterly whackadoodles. Continue reading