Village Music, R.I.P.

Pcard-South Nice profile in the SF Chronicle on Mill Valley’s legendary record store Village Music, or, more specifically, on the fact that it’s shutting its doors at the end of this month after 60-some years in business. To a certain extent, the store’s demise could be related to the fact that the owner has steadfastly refused to adopt a shred of 21st century technology (or even latter-20th):

Goddard does not own a cell phone or use e-mail. His store does have a Web site, but his wife has to take him there. His store telephone is a rotary dial. He does not take credit cards. He does not even sell by mail order (“I like to see who I sell my records to,” he says). He does own two ’50s Chevys.

But those same Luddite qualities are probably a part of the reason why the store has become renowned as it is – Goddard is about the music, and nothing else. Sadly, one can’t say that about many of the record stores left in the country. And the ones that do remain aren’t long for this world.

Goddard quotes Rolling Stone magazine saying that 36 percent of this country’s record stores have closed since 2003 and credits his staying in business as long as he did to “stubbornness.” “I outlasted Tower,” he says. “Who’d-a thunk?”

A tear falls.

Music: Jonathan Richman :: Dodge Veg-O-Matic

2 Replies to “Village Music, R.I.P.”

  1. And his collection will probably be bought by someone who will sell exclusively via the Internet, never see his customers, only take credit cards, and make a mint. ( is down right now so I can’t RTFA.)

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