Tampa's Vinyl Fever to close
You know how they say you're not supposed to deliver bad news right before the holidays? Well, we're here to tell you bad news doesn't go down all that well AFTER the holidays, either.
In a shocking statement, Vinyl Fever, Tampa's best-known record store, announced Monday that it's closing by the end of February. Owner Lee Wolfson stated that the closing is due to a "combination of industry changes, a difficult economy, and the upcoming expiration of our lease." Everything in the store will be sold.
"It's not something we want to do," Wolfson said Monday. "We've gotten by the past few years, but we've been struggling."
This is stunning news, especially considering Rolling Stone recently named Vinyl Fever one of America's best record stores. We'll have more on this in the coming weeks, but for now, get the store's official closing statement after the jump.
Here's the full statement:
VINYL FEVER ANNOUNCES CLOSING
Everything for sale, including that Rolling Stones autographed guitar
TAMPA, FLA. - December 27, 2010 - The end of an era. After serving the Tampa Bay area for almost 30 years, Vinyl Fever , located at 4110 Henderson Blvd. in South Tampa, will close its doors at the end of February. Known for its knowledgeable staff and extensive, eclectic selection of new and used CDs, vinyl records and related merchandise, Vinyl Fever has drawn customers from across the state and beyond. Recently voted one of the Top 25 record stores in the country by Rolling Stone magazine, Vinyl Fever endured in no small part because its crew lives and breathes music, passionately providing customers with information and an experience they cannot get at other stores.
“It has been a great run,” says Owner/Manager Lee Wolfson. “We feel honored and fortunate to have lived such a long business life doing what we love. We would have liked to make it to 33 and 1/3 [years], but the combination of industry changes, a difficult economy, and the upcoming expiration of our lease has forced our hand.”
A CELEBRATION BEGINS
“We plan to celebrate and commemorate our 30 rocking years in Tampa. We’ll thank our customers and the community with blowout sales and special events, and hopefully leave everyone with great memories.”
Everything in the store will be sold, including the famous guitar autographed by the Rolling Stones that’s had a “Not for Sale” sign on it for years. For now, most items will be 30%-50% off.
THE BALLAD OF VINYL FEVER
As the independent music scene grew in the late 1970’s, two idealistic bohemians named Sam and Dave pooled their personal record collections, music knowledge, and a few hundred bucks to open Singing Dog Records in Columbus, Ohio. Through their store they met Mike, who managed a similar store in Cleveland. Mike had lived in Tampa, was eager to return, and helped open Vinyl Fever in 1981. A Tallahassee store soon followed.
Dave’s brother Lee followed in Dave’s footsteps. Starting out at Singing Dog, Lee transferred to Tallahassee in 1984 and took charge of all of the stores in 1987. Over time, Vinyl Fever Tampa split from its sister stores, still managed by Lee and an amazing crew of music aficionados.