Wednesday, November 4, 2009

It's Nicole Atkins' Vinyl District

For the last 8 years that I've lived off and on in Asbury Park, my friends and I have always been like "when is this place gonna get a record shop?" There's art galleries, bars, dance studios, gay specialty stores, doggie ice cream parlors, yet no record shops. In order to buy a record you literally have to drive 30 minutes into Red Bank to Jack's (which is a great shop but a bit tough on the gas tank these days.)

Finally our buddy Joe Koukas did something about it and opened up Holdfast Records on the plum little strip of Cookman Avenue. Holdfast specializes in used and hard to find Punk, Hardcore, Reggae, Old Country, Jazz and Dub 45's from artists like Barrington Levy and Big Youth. I recently picked up a couple of live Zeppelin bootlegs and an Edith Piaf boxed set. As well as a mint condition John Denver and the Muppets album. Score!

If you're looking for something in particular Joe can order it for you and they also offer a special service that I haven't seen at any record shops before. Personal shopping. So basically you hand Joe a list of everything you're looking for and he sets off to acquire all of it for you. This usually takes between 3 and 4 weeks. It's like vinyl bounty hunting.

Holdfast doesn't just have a great selection of vinyl but they also have great vintage clothes and vintage guitars and amps and pedals for sale. JoJo who works in the guitar department also does setups. He'll fix you up real nice! They also feature an awesome selection of graffiti art, rare prints and paintings from popular local artists such as Porkchop and Bradley Hoffer.

But the secret gem lies in the basement...

Silverball Museum resides in the basement of Holdfast. It's a vintage pinball museum featuring 150 machines in mint condition all available to play for ten dollars an hour. And its BYOB! Meowzers! Record shopping, getting your gear fixed, outfit for later, and an hour to kill on pinball and a couple of tall boys.

Holdfast is a little bit of paradise where the debris meets the sea.

Holdfast Records and the Silverball Museum
639 Cookman Avenue, Asbury Park, NJ

Barrington Levy - Shine Eye Girl (Mp3)
Big Youth - Four Sevens (Mp3)
Led Zeppelin - In The Evening [Live in Berlin, Bonham Last Show] (Mp3)
Edith Piaf - Vie en Rose (Mp3)
John Denver with The Muppets - When The River Meets The Sea (Mp3)

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