8.14.2007

Rockit Scientist Records-NYC


I had a long day at the office in Gotham, and my dinner plans changed.
So what to do? I decided to take a little hike a bit south and a bit east over to the new Disney Land that is The East Village.

As I ventured a bit, I came upon St Mark’s Place. In the back of my mind, I remembered that there was a record store that has been advertising in Ugly Things for 12 years or so. I could picture the ad, but could not remember the store.

On the south side of the street, I saw Kim’s Video, which is the most absolute sickest video store that I have ever seen. It has at least 2 levels, and to be honest, since I can only focus on one collecting addiction at a time, I just bypassed looking at all the video and DVDs, and went up straight to the back of the second floor to the vinyl section. I found a couple of things, but when I looked at the condition, missing the paper insert, general wear, etc, I could not pull the trigger on a few $6.99 records.

As I left Kim’s, the name of the record store came to mind—Rockit Scientist.

I went about another half block or so, and I saw Rockit on the north side of the street. It is a couple of steps down off the sidewalk. When, I walked in, I was taken aback. This is a place of musical nirvana. On the right side of the store there are racks from floor to ceiling, filled with cds that range from soul to funk to 60s garage, psych and cool music of all stripes. Along the left side of the store is the traditional record store raised counter of yore, featuring various record related ephemera and an older Technics turntable. Moving towards the back, past the basement stairs, there is a rack of LPs on the left and LPs on the right. Going up the walls and continuing onto the ceiling there are other records- mainly mid value 45s. The record explorer needs to be careful to not stub your toes on the budget LP crates that sit in front of the other racks.

I found a box of LPs titled, James Brown. Bingo. I looked through the box a bit and came up with a sealed copy of Sho is Funky Down Here priced at $9.99. The record is marked as all instrumental. “James Brown plays and directs the James Brown Band.” Done.

Frankly, I was a bit overwhelmed at the depth and breadth of the music on offer in this tiny store. I struck up a conversation with Robert (?) the proprietor. We discussed all manner of music and musicology. This guy knows his stuff and knew many of the old garage folks from whom I have purchased records, reissues, reviewed their releases, or even interviewed- Crypt Records, Norton Records, Mop Top Mike, etc. over the years.

I remembered something that I was interested in getting a copy of and asked for a recommendation of some Gil Scott Heron. I picked up an LP compilation of Gil Scott Heron called The Revolution Will Not Be Televised. I can’t wait to hear this one either.

I will definitely be back to visit.

3 comments:

Vincent said...

Rich, good score! You've gotta get the other two instro LPs to complete the trilogy ("Ain't It Funky Now" and "The Popcorn") if you haven't already.

Good to have you back!

Adam said...

I've got that Gil Scott album, it's a great one

jonny quest said...

Hi , thanks for the kind words , next time you're in the store introduce yourself. Take care.