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What's Doug Allen reading?


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Doug Allen, co-owner of Bananas Music and Movies

Allen and his wife, Michelle, started a business on Central Avenue in St. Petersburg in 1977. Over the years Bananas Music and Movies has persevered in the ever-evolving recording industry, through the emergence of retail chains, the disappearance of eight-tracks and the advent of downloadable music, to name a few challenges. Allen said his business, which Rolling Stone magazine named one of the top 25 music stores in the country in 2010, is sturdy at his retail store on 22nd Avenue N and at his vinyl warehouse on 16th Avenue N.

"I'm seeing a lot of people coming in and buying new vinyl these days," he said. "A lot of them are the same people that sold me vinyl 20 years ago."

What's on your nightstand?

The Bookman's Wake by John Dunning. My background includes time as a bookseller, so I found the mystery very good. And I recently read a biography on Thomas Edison that I liked very much. It was The Wizard of Menlo Park: How Thomas Alva Edison Invented the Modern World by Randall E. Stross.

What about biographies on musicians? There have been some good ones recently.

You know, it's like a busman's holiday. I don't seem to like to read about musicians much. But as far as the biography on Edison goes, I enjoyed it. I once met Thomas Edison's last secretary. Years ago, the man came into the store to look at our collection of old Victrolas. He showed me a picture where he was standing next to Edison. He said seeing the Victrolas helped him remember the old times.

Piper Castillo can be reached at

What's Doug Allen reading? 08/20/11 [Last modified: Saturday, August 20, 2011 4:30am]
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