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Score Vinyl and More at Hudson Valley Record Stores

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Adobe Stock | Photo by Ivan Kurmyshov

Local record stores provide the perfect environments to discover music new and old while browsing beloved albums in a cherished format.

Nothing quite beats the classics, especially when it comes to music. The Hudson Valley has long been an important destination for the art form (the all-important Woodstock Festival took place right here in the Catskills!). A home to the late Pete Seeger and countless other influential musicians, the region continues to produce stellar artists who garner national recognition and produce new albums in the time-honored format, vinyl.

In a world ruled by iTunes collections and Spotify playlists, record stores continue to occupy a special place in the Hudson Valley. After all, in a region known for curated thrift stores, vintage clothing shops, antique centers, and historic destinations, it only makes sense that retro music storefronts continue to thrive. Whether you’re on the hunt for hard-to-find vinyl or need a new disc to spin at your next dinner party, you’ll find a medley of old and new, along with instruments and musical merchandise, at these local outlets.

Bruised Apple Books

Peekskill, 914.734.7000

While this Northern Westchester shop’s main export is books, it also carries records, CDs, and movies. A walk through the doors transports any music fan back to the 1990s, when Bruised Apple first opened. Wooden racks, hand-painted signs, and other embellishments add rich character and personality for repeat record hunts. Give the shop a call for updated hours, and be sure to stop by Peekskill Brewing after a great session of browsing.

 

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Darkside Records

Poughkeepsie, 845.452.8010

This ever-expanding record shop embodies a greater underground spirit that more and more Queen City businesses bring to the table (Poughkeepsie Grind, anyone?). Darkside Records carries exclusive Record Store Day releases, hard-to-find vintage vinyl, and a host of other counter-culture goodies. Find DVDs, CDs, cassettes, and even laserdiscs of all genres while browsing the store’s collection. Follow this record store on social media for updates on the collection, sales, and promotional events. Record aficionados chasing particular releases can also check Darkside’s up-to-date online catalogue of records.

 

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Hudson Valley Vinyl

Beacon, 845.765.1411

Whether you are looking to add to your collection or sell off releases, Hudson Valley Vinyl is one of the best places to do it. The Main Street record shop fits an expansive array of titles into a comfortable, cozy space. Those looking for jazz, soul, world, and, of course, classic rock will have a field day inside this Beacon mainstay. HVV’s staff caters to vintage record fans with original pressings and rare releases that go above and beyond standard music store fare. Its convenient location places it at the heart of a shopping day trip in Beacon.

 

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John Doe Records

Hudson, 518.212.7653

John Doe Records has been all over the Hudson Valley throughout its storied history. After stints in Pawling, Rosendale, Tivoli, and Livingston, the shop landed in Hudson in 2002 and has remained ever since. John Doe Records has carved out a niche in Columbia County as a resource for artists and art appreciators alike. From obscure to mainstream, this collector tries to stock something for everyone who walks through the door.

Due to changing hours, call or text John Doe Records for an appointment, or shop the collection on Discogs.

Last Vestige Music Shop

Albany, 518.432.7736

One of the last vestiges of old-school-cool music stores, this Quail Street destination has served the Capital Region since 1984. Last Vestige was originally a vinyl phonograph mail-order business, and still has everything from Grado phono cartridges, LP poly bags and 45 protective sleeves to paper inner sleeves, headphones, record cleaning supplies and kits, phono pre-amps, and used turntables in stock. Give the Hudson Valley shop a call before visiting or browse the collection to find music from genres like folk, gospel, soul, metal, and much more.

 

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Main Street Beat 

Nyack, 845.353.5426

Any weekend trip to Nyack would not be complete without a stop into Main Street Beat. This one-stop-shop has clothing, books, and records galore. Fans of music new and old can nab some physical media to match their tastes at this store; Van Morrison and Cream albums stand next to new pressings from Migos and Drake. Orders places online can be picked up in-store, shipped, or even delivered based on patron location.

 

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Newburgh Vintage Emporium

Newburgh, 845.562.5200

Now with locations off Route 9W and NY-17K, Newburgh Vintage Emporium is a treat for vinyl enthusiasts across Orange County. One of the long-term vendors at this antique storefront and marketplace is the Sound Shack. This shop, which joined Newburgh Vintage Emporium in 2015, boasts an extensive collection of records from a variety of artists (think a range from My Chemical Romance to Dolly Parton to Bill Haley & His Comets). It also offers reconditioned stereo equipment which at any time can include turntables, amps, speakers, and more.

 

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Rhino Records

Kingston and New Paltz, 845.255.0230

Rhino Records has a famous reputation that dates back to 1970s Los Angeles. The brand came to the Hudson Valley in the 1990s, and has a quaint setup in New Paltz and a large, comfortable space in Kingston. The Kingston location also sells an eclectic collection of movies and books. A dense atmosphere and vast collection to browse makes Rhino Records a destination to remember. Stop in before a hike in the Shawangunks or during a day trip to New York’s first capital.

 

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River Street Beat Shop

Troy, 518.272.0433

Troy’s eclectic River Street continues to grow and expand. One element of the Hudson River-facing block that has remained a mainstay is the atmospheric record store. Neil Young and Crazy Horse posters, Led Zeppelin paintings, and other music memorabilia decorate this cozy shopping experience. When shopping, also browse through the collection of deep cut CDs and movies on DVD. Plus, the Capital Region’s first Friday series Troy Night Out usually includes a pop into River Street Beat Shop.

Rock Fantasy

Middletown, 845.343.7300

Like most Hudson Valley record stores, Rock Fantasy has a large collection of vinyl. However, this Middletown jaunt absolutely skews toward classic rock, heavy metal, and punk — headbangers rejoice! Rock Fantasy opened in 1985 on the same street it stands on today. Who misses pinball machines? Play on nostalgic setups with themes ranging from Elvira to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and even compete in tournaments. Check the social media accounts for more information on how to sign up.

Rocket Number Nine

Kingston, 845.331.8217

As part of Kingston’s thriving music scene, Rocket Number Nine provides a mixture of vintage cuts and newer releases. Its convenient location on Front Street can add a record hunt to any excursion in the Ulster County city. In one place, find limited edition green- or pink-colored rock records, old school funk albums, and contemporary artists making their forays into vinyl releases. For even more chances to buy, check out the shop’s page on Discogs to nab music from the comfort of the couch.

Spike’s Record Rack

Catskill, 917.653.2453

For retro vibes galore, take a detour to Spike’s Record Rack in Catskill. The cozy record store in the mountains has a constant stream of records coming in and out of the store, making repeat album digging mandatory. A flip through the new arrival section can yield releases from The Clash, David Bowie, Genesis, and other classic artists. An annex location inside the West Coxsackie Antiques Center yields more bargain finds, with many of the LPs priced as low as $3 apiece.

Team Love

New Paltz, 845.419.3099

Named after the record label of the same name, Team Love Records in New Paltz supports up-and-coming artists in wholly unique ways. The online store and brick-and-mortar shop both stock CDs and even vinyl records of the bands and songwriters under its label. Shop its entire collection online, or make an appointment to visit the store in person and discover brand-new music.

Woodstock Music Shop

Woodstock, 845.679.3224

Located just off Tinker Street, Woodstock Music Shop does vinyl and so much more. Passersby can ogle over guitars, tambourines, and mandolins, then score essentials like tuners and cables. Stopping into this Ulster County spot is well worth it for a chance to score first pressings of renowned albums. After all, no trip to the artsy community of Woodstock is complete without buying some music, is it?

Record Fair Zip Ziggurat Saugerties

Labor Day Record Fair 2020 | Photo by Raphael Beretta

Zip’s Ziggurat

Saugerties, 845.418.6947

Though it only comes thrice a year, Zip’s Ziggurat is the ultimate Hudson Valley record fair. Under a small village of tents in Saugerties, attendees can browse thousands of albums at low prices. Both social distancing and contactless payment are in effect for the Memorial Day, Fourth of July, and Labor Day weekend sales. Free refreshments and tons of recommendations are available courtesy of music aficionado and record collector Mark Zip.


Related: Find One-of-a-Kind Fashions at Hudson Valley Consignment Shops