Vinyl records may seem like something your grandparents used to have stacked in a corner. They are sure to conjure up memories of records that you weren’t allowed to touch due to the delicate nature of the record and outer artwork, however records aren’t just for old folks anymore—they’re making a comeback. There is no better city to visit when looking for the best selection of old and new vinyl records than San Francisco. The Bay City has always housed some of the best vinyls for decades, and with one of the widest selections when it comes to genres, you are bound to be amazed at what you can find.
Hours: Sun to Wed – 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Thurs to Sat – 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
One of the oldest and well stocked record stores in San Francisco, Aquarius Records was founded in the 70s and has since been updated with a new website. Registered subscribers are sent email updates that give users an easy way to score new finds, but the shop still carries the beauty and of an old record store. Technology may change the way we do things, but nothing can beat the charm found in a historic record store among old viny.
The Explorist International
Hours: Tues to Sat – 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sun – 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.
The Explorist International is a used and new record store specializing in rural American music, jazz, pop, folk, and electronic music. Go online to check out the ever changing and fabulous selection of records currently in-stock before heading to the store. Even if you don’t know what you are looking for The Explorist International will sure to impress you with their wide variety of records.
Hours: Tues to Sat – 12 p.m. to 7 p.m., Sun – 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Groove Merchant is a fantastic store where vinyl lovers can listen before buying their records. Clean and organized with a well-stocked inventory, this store is a must visit location for music lovers. If you’re lucky enough you might stop by while the store has a surprise special musical guest. If you don’t want to leave it to chance, find out beforehand by becoming a fan of the store’s Facebook page—fans will be notified as to who will be in-store performing and when.
Grooves Vinyl Attractions
Hours: Mon to Sun – 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Grooves Vinyl Attractions is a small, privately owned record store that also features listening stations, so customers can listen before they make a purchase. Here you can find a selection of old, classic records. Keep in mind some may look to be in better condition than others, but all are reasonably priced.
Hours: Mon to Sun – 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Recycled Records is a small used record store located in the historic Haight/Ashbury district that is a must visit before heading to other vinyl record stores. Find rare and classic records, go back to the 30s and travel through to the sounds of the 80s.
Parmeeta Ghoman is a freelance writer living in San Francisco. She specializes in shopping and style. Find some of her work on Examiner.com.