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Thursday, February 18, 2010

In Store: Grooves Still Gets Goosebumps Over Vinyl

Posted By on Thu, Feb 18, 2010 at 11:11 AM

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In Store spotlights San Francisco's quirkiest, most beloved, weirdest, and/or otherwise-most-interesting record stores. Our city's unmistakable friskiness and cultural capital emanate from those dusty, creaky, hard-to-find, money-losing, insanely huge, hilariously small, and often-crowded (at least with stuff) outposts of recorded music. We're always hunting for choice music outlets, but if you're curious about a specific one, please send useful information to iportmusic@gmail.com.

Name: Grooves

Location: 1797 Market St.

Tagline: Inspiralled Vinyl

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You may know it as: That store with the brightly colored records hanging in the windows at Market and Octavia.

Owner: Ray Andersen, age 70.

Specialty: "Lots of anything obscure and out of date," Andersen says. "Our key to survival is our eclecticism. It ain't all rock 'n' roll." But Grooves ain't all vinyl, or even music, either. The store carries tapes, eight tracks, books, T-shirts and vintage posters -- anything Andersen's curious palate deems clever. Grooves even gives away matchbooks, which is a charming bit of either abandon or obliviousness considering its large stock of flammability.

Employees: "Not really."

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Friends who sometimes hang out and help run the place: about six -- including a guy you might have heard of named Kelley Stoltz.

Attitude: "We'll keep an artist in stock whether they sell or not because they deserve to be in stock. There's a reason I have a very large international section and a good spoken word section and things like that, and it's not because they sell well. It's because they're cool."

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Ian S. Port

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