Monday, 28 July 2014

CD Warehouse is closing: Say a prayer for the rock bottom remainders

At the end of August, CD Warehouse closed out its famous St. Laurent Blvd. location. Now, it's closing its other stores in the west end.
It will be a sad time for those of us who liked to spend time there browsing for those unique little musical gems, the ones handmade with love by our hometown heroes and beloved legends.
I remember spending time there with my friend Dave, now long passed, who liked to buy CDs made by the sidemen, the musicians who added the little amazing touches, a lick here, a beat there, to sweeten an already wonderfully-made concoction. It was like adding just a touch of rhubarb to a perfect strawberry pie.
Dave the bass player had the most incredible collection of CDs and vinyl. I used to curl up for hours beside him, over a few beers, maybe a joint, and let the knowledge rain down on my little ears. God, he knew his stuff.
Those were the days, my friend, I thought they'd never end.
They did, of course.
Dave has joined the ensemble in the sky, but if I close my eyes, I can still see the twinkle and the crooked grin that announced that Dave had found a good one.
I miss him. I really do.
Dave would have been crushed to hear of the passing of yet another record store. It will probably end up as a fusion restaurant or a factory outlet store, like we need another one of those in our neighborhood.
Nowadays, it's easy to find anything on-line, but wasn't it nice to see a friendly face, to chat up the staff who forgot more about blues, rock, even classical music than most of us knew? Wasn't it great, too, to get that phone call saying the used out-of-print Travelling Wilburys CD was in, and you now could get your thumb prints on the only copy for miles?
Bragging rights, that's what it gave you.

Today, we can simply click on the Apple Store app and pick off a tune here, a tune there. Nobody buys the whole joint anymore, at least nobody I know.
It's like picking up the shiniest piece of fruit from the box. People don't realize it all tastes good. You just have to give it a chance.
I feel sad about this, I can't lie.
CD Warehouse was more than a record store. It was a community hall where the greats and locals gathered and were supported.
So long CD Warehouse.
Thanks for stopping by on your road to oblivion.
There will be a hole in my Ottawa, that's for sure.

Okay, Pinetop, let's play 'em out.

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