I walked around the 1er arrondissement of Lyon the other day and counted over 10 record shops. That’s 10 independently run and sonically conscious boutiques selling 150gm flat packages of black wax.
Vinyl is back and Lyon seems to have caught the bug. I think that’s more record shops than Oldham Street in Manchester. Is Lyon becoming even cooler than I thought?
Everyday is Record Store Day
Music has always been a touchstone and in the format of a physical object with a carefully chosen sleeve may well be enduring the recent digital induced shrinking of its soul.
That’s good news for everyone, unless you don’t like music, because music artists can’t survive without selling their work and vinyl brings back the fun in sharing the rewards of hard earned creativity.
It’s a piece of art and there’s some music in the middle. Now with bluetooth equipped turntables you can easily buy a good deck that connects easily and wirelessly with you favourite listening post. No need anymore for all those bothersome wires.
For some of us record shops are those places we remember from our childhood and are filled with memories but for the youth of today there is a growing appreciation for listening to music on vinyl.
Hanging out in a record shop we get to share our tastes and discover new music and look at great images like a gallery of small paintings you can run through your fingers. Records you can collect and give to friends and tell a story about or decorate your room. Albums are like books and get passed from generation to generation.
1er arrondissement Independent Record Shops
There are record shops all over Lyon but a particularly good area is at the foot of the slopes of La Croix Rousse. Start at Groovedge Record Store located at 18 rue des Tables Claudiennes which is not far from Metro Croix Paquet and then head towards Place des Terreaux and go down Rue Leynaud and pop into the Tiki Vinyl Store.
As you approach Place Sathonay stop at Chez Emile on Rue Sergent Blandan, Lyons specialist in techno and house music and then as you approach the River Saone there is Art Disques (French records) and Dangerhouse on Rue Thimmonier, the veterans of Lyons record shops and nostalgic places indeed. Just before you get to Bar Voxx on Rue Algerie is Sofa Records, a paradise of World Music and then cross over the river and there is the new Livity Records on quai de Bondy.
Vinyl in Lyon
So go to any one of Lyons numerous HiFi shops and for starting at around €200 get yourself a decent turntable with a built in preamp and bluetooth, (don’t buy one of those hip looking portable jobs, they don’t sound very good), throw away your iPod and start collecting records.
Good used vinyl LPs start at around €10 and spend your afternoons hunting for bargains, forgotten musical gems and future memories in some of Lyons coolest little side streets.