Portland / Oregon

Dead C

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when it comes to most "local" and best prices, 2nd avenue wins every time. it's so small and so crowded that it can turn folks off, but this shop is the epitome of family-run small business. they always have new releases and they almost always have the limited/indie versions. they very clearly get the largest shipments of RSD items too. i've waited in line for 1.5 hours well past opening and still found basically everything on my list. and they do take credit cards, so that's a plus ;)
I agree that 2nd ave is exactly that. They are so reasonable on their prices. And they're actually opening up today, limited hours.

Jackpot is the other I hit too. Crossroads is great for a dig session, which I could use now.
2nd Avenue is my go-to. Their prices can't be beat, and I've had good luck finding gems that are long gone at other shops. Gotta love the dial-up credit card system, the handwritten receipts, and the subtle yet sincere service they all provide. They have been carrying all of the Blue Note re-issues (80th/Tone Poet) at prices well below Music Millennium's. All of that said, I hope they come out the other side of this, as I don't think they have any e-commerce or curbside options going at the moment. (EDIT: just saw @Matt M post that they are opening today, great news).

I haven't really understood the Music Millennium hype for quite some time. Shopped there a lot in the 90's, discovered some great music and really loved the staff working there at the time. At some point along the way, they lost me and I just haven't had a great experience the various times I have given them another chance. And given the variable experience, really hard to pay the premium pricing they charge.

Jackpot! is a great shop...that said, I hardly ever get over there...and by the time I do, never seem to find anything that I haven't already tracked down elsewhere. Oh well.

Mississippi Records is a gem, more or less my 1a to 2nd Ave.
The only reason I didn't spend more time at 2nd Ave is because it was my son's birthday and I would have spent all day in there. I found the shop when we had a small window to kill and had to stick a pin in it for later. I just haven't been back to Portland since.
 

High Rant District

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Portland, OR
I just had a really terrible experience with Music Millenium and am wondering if I'm alone in that.
Oh man, that's terrible!
I will issue a refund, keep the record.
- Allen
Wait, wut? ;)

They made a mistake and then corrected it. Mail-order ain't their thing, normally. They're being forced into it for the moment.
Also, this is what "shelfwear" looks like to them. If that bend looks small, it actually reaches up to the vinyl inside
I dig MM. For my purposes, mail order suits me better, but when I hit a physical store I prefer MM (followed by Jackpot). The folks who work there have never thrown an ounce of snobbery my way, and Terry chatted me up once when he saw me carrying a non-RSD Wipers record during a RSD. Super-nice guy. Employees have without fail been knowledgeable and helpful.
This is where it is hard the VMP vs local argument for me. I've had as many issues with them as I have with VMP, if not more. Quite a few warps, not getting what I asked for at curbside pickup and having to take it back, the fact they are so expensive with certain items.
As a brick-and-mortar store in Portland, with exceedingly high rent and employee costs, prices are going to be high. A lot of the employees have been there for ages, and are going to cost more.

As for corner dings and sleeve damage, I think those of us on this forum are a minority in the record-buying world in that many of us really sweat sleeve condition. I'm guilty too.
 

Dead C

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They made a mistake and then corrected it. Mail-order ain't their thing, normally. They're being forced into it for the moment.

As for corner dings and sleeve damage, I think those of us on this forum are a minority in the record-buying world in that many of us really sweat sleeve condition. I'm guilty too.
Sorry, this is kind of a bogus take. In my initial email, I told them that I wanted an immediate and full refund, because I didn't want this album and I wasn't cool with them not contacting me first, before taking the liberty to charge anything beyond what I authorized on than my invoice. That response telling me to keep it wasn't a generous move, it was kind of a dick response. This isn't just a "corner ding" or a minor crease. The jacket Is bent in half up to the vinyl with ring wear and a seam split on top of the normal shelf wear and smashed corner, which it also has. There was zero apology or acknowledgment that they charged extra money to my card without me authorizing it. It was pretty clear that, if they didn't issue a refund, I was going to do a charge back, and they were going to eat another shipping fee with a return label for a record they haven't sold in 2 years because, anyone seeing it in person can see how fucked up it was.

There was an easy solution to all of this, even after they shipped it to me. He could have said that they weren't aware that the album was as damaged when they packaged it. He could have apologized for making an extra charge, stating that he wasn't aware that nobody contacted me about that first. At minimum, he could have acknowledged that they should have contacted me first. Instead, this guy's choice was to blame the customer for ALL of this.

I've been in the store myself and talked to the staff. They were cool enough to me. This response and the way they handled it wasn't. It's my fault that I clicked the wrong method. It's my fault, because, when ordering a record that didn't come out last week, I should expect it to be in any manner of condition. Meanwhile, they sell outer sleeves to protect the jackets and charge more for albums based on the particular pressing when, often times, it's simply a different barcode on the jacket, so they can't pretend as if their business isn't based on a collector's market. I've sat there and watched them price shit based on that, so it's ridiculous to pull the "the music is all that really matters angle" on someone as a retailer. It's basically the equivalent of sending me a comic book with the cover ripped half off and asking, "Couldn't you still read the story?"

I get that you personally like these guys for your own personal reasons, but to imply that they hooked me up and fixed it in the end, or that I'm a particularly elitist record buyer that's "guilty" of anything, as if the large majority of people are totally cool with getting banged up merchandise and being overcharged when they give their credit card information to a business online, is total bullshit. That's a violation, guy. It's on me? I'm "guilty" of "sweating sleeve condition"? Would you want to give a bent up record to someone that you bought it for as a gift; especially when you could have just purchased it from somewhere else?


Oh, and I like your take about how mailorder is a new thing for them, when in his excuse, he literally blamed his "shipping department."

 

High Rant District

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Portland, OR
Sorry, this is kind of a bogus take.
It wouldn't be the first time and it won't be the last. You make excellent points.

As for being 'elitist' I wasn't trying to imply that you were at elitist just that we forumers are likely pickier than the general record-buying population. If a record shows up in clearly worse condition than advertised, I send it back. I get where you're coming from.

All that said... fuck Seattle. 😘
 

LeeVing

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I really should get to 2nd Ave more....when driving up from Salem it is a bit of a pain to park in that area (it's been years since I've tried, tho)

I used to hit the west side Everyday Music, as they had a pretty decent guy buying good records there...but it is now closed.

I never get up to Mississippi...and don't carry cash.

Crossroads was better at their Hawthorne store, but their new store is ok, too. It was just nice to hit Crossroads, Jackpot and Exiled. Now it's a bit out of the way, but still good for diggin.
 
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GentleSenator

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Oregon
I really should get to 2nd Ave more....when driving up from Salem it is a bit of a pain to park in that area (it's been years since I've tried, tho)

I used to hit the west side Everyday Music, as they had a pretty decent guy buying good records there...but it is now closed.

I never get up to Mississippi...and don't carry cash.

Crossroads was better at their Hawthorne store, but their new store is ok, too. It was just nice to hit Crossroads, Jackpot and Exiled. Now it's a bit out of the way, but still good for diggin.
street parking is usually not too bad on 2nd ave now, now that the super busy restaurant across the street relocated. there's a reasonable pay lot in the back of the building too.

i miss the beaverton EM. it's where i found hundreds of amazing used records. there was no one else between them and the coast.
 

LeeVing

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i miss the beaverton EM. it's where i found hundreds of amazing used records. there was no one else between them and the coast.
Yeah, that's the one I really liked. That's where I found my 2 45 RPM Mastodon albums, and a lot of others. That was a good spot, too. My wife and daughter love that mall...and I got to go digging.

The Sandy EM is ok. I find decent stuff in their new used bins from time to time. Condition is something they don't really seem to look at, tho, so you really need to look at the record more than the cover.


This really makes me want to drive up and record shop.
 

Memo

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So how's y'all's city reopening coming along? What are y'all experiencing? This is to educate myself for a July trip previously planned before pandemic.
 

Matt M

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So how's y'all's city reopening coming along? What are y'all experiencing? This is to educate myself for a July trip previously planned before pandemic.
Pretty slowly for Portland. I think Multnomah County, which is where Portland is, applied to open for Phase 1 starting June 12th. Not sure if it's been approved. Neighboring counties opened June 1st. Some stores and shops have opened with masks. I've been to a couple record stores with a mask on. Coffee shops, restaurants and such are still just doing take out until Phase 1. Then will be limited to fewer people.

Hope your trip ends up working out.
 

Memo

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Pretty slowly for Portland. I think Multnomah County, which is where Portland is, applied to open for Phase 1 starting June 12th. Not sure if it's been approved. Neighboring counties opened June 1st. Some stores and shops have opened with masks. I've been to a couple record stores with a mask on. Coffee shops, restaurants and such are still just doing take out until Phase 1. Then will be limited to fewer people.

Hope your trip ends up working out.
Thanks for the info. The trip isn't until July 15th. So we still have some time. Wouldn't be a fun trip if literally everything is still closed or limited lol
 

hatfieldpdx

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So how's y'all's city reopening coming along? What are y'all experiencing? This is to educate myself for a July trip previously planned before pandemic.
As @Matt M indicated, Oregon is being fairly cautious and deliberate about re-opening, so things are happening pretty slowly. Once we enter Phase I, we need to remain there successfully for 21 days before Phase II (details on what this will look like not 100% clear at the moment) will be possible. Depending on the timing of your trip, it's likely we will be in Phase I or possibly Phase II. During Phase I, this is the reality for restaurants:
  • Ensure tables are spaced at least six (6) feet apart so that at least six (6) feet between parties is maintained, including when customers approach or leave tables
  • Require all employees to wear cloth face or disposable coverings (provided by the employer)
  • End all on-site consumption of food and drinks by 10pm
If any of this sounds perplexing, or you want to dig into more details, this might help: Oregon Coronavirus Information & Resources

Nothing you haven't considered, I'm sure, but the Portland you visit in July will be one that none of us have seen or experienced yet. New systems will still be rolling out, and it may be difficult to get definitive information until you are here. For example, you will likely need to have reservations for restaurants you are set on going to (that have been also re-opened), so I would be proactive on that front.

I think you mentioned spending time on Mt. Hood. Not sure what your plans are, but they recently re-opened most of the public land (mostly U.S. Forest Service), including developed campgrounds.

In short, a visit in July should be possible, though likely somewhat compromised in terms of "experiencing" Portland. If you are able to adjust your timing, August or September might be a better time to visit. Either way, hope it works out!
 

GritNGlitter

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Covid cases are increasing in Oregon because it's spreading more, not just because of increased testing. Positive tests are up from about 1.6% in mid-may to 4.1% of tests last week. Considering that until recently we were mainly testing symptomatic people... Hospitalizations are also up 82% since May. I'm not saying you should be shut-ins, just keep an eye on it and do your part to prevent the spread. xoxoxo

 

Rip_City

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I'm about to have a few things from that U-discover sale I want to sell to a store in PDX. Who should I go to?
That's what I plan on doing with mine. The only stores I know are open from 12PM - 5PM are 2nd Ave Records and Jackpot! Records.

Not sure either will give you more than $5 per. Fine by me since no losses incurred!
 
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bdm105

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Who's askin?
That's what I plan on doing with mine. The only stores I know that I know are open from 12PM - 5PM are 2nd Ave Records and Jackpot! Records.

Not sure either will give you more than $5 per. Fine by me since no losses incurred!
Yeah I'd like a little more than $5 for something they can put out as new but whatever it is I'll take it. Ideally I can get $10 in store credit and buy a MoFi or something with all of them but if it's just $5 cash still will be enough for some beer.
 
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