Goodbye, Tower

An evening at Tower in West Hollywood was not a stop you made. It WAS the evening.
This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.

You know what's got me down even more than the election? That Tower Records is closing. That is a real drag. I remember when I first moved to Los Angeles to seek my fortune back in 1983, I lived on Larabee, just north of Sunset. My friends and I would go to Tower at night. Or I'd go alone. An evening at Tower in West Hollywood was not a stop you made. It WAS the evening. You could hang out there for hours. Cool people worked there. Cool people shopped there. Cool people hung out there with nothing better to do. You could saunter across the street to the video store (some years later) or the classical department. If you wanted a break from the music, you could go to Book Soup. Crowds were gathering at the Whiskey and, later, the Viper Room. You could go eat at Duke's. Spago was just blasting off down the street. If you were a veggie, you could hit the Source on Sunset. If you had money you could go to Nicky Blair's. Something for everyone.

But Tower was the best evening. Listening to and hunting for music with a staff that knew music. The New York store was OK. The one on La Fayette was better than the one at Lincoln Center. But the one on could walk in and immediately go into a serious retail coma and when you came to, you were at the register with a thousand dollars worth of tapes, CD's and DVD's and no memory of how you got there. Bowie boxed sets. Deep Purple/ Made in Japan. The Stones at the El Mocambo. The Concert for Bangladesh, Live Rust, Thick as a Brick, Days of Future Past. Woody Allen records. Van Cliburn records. Sketches of Spain. Les Valses Nobles et Sentimentales. Page, Clapton, Hendrix. Joni Mitchell. Neil Diamond. Bonnie Raitt. The Who. The Clash. The Doors. Andre Previn. Andre Watts. She Loves You (yeah, yeah, yeah). All of it. You were in a total blackout for a couple of hours. And it was great.

Goodbye, Tower Records. One of my favorite stores to get lost in.