Saturday, 27 April 2013


It would be easy to pass Downbeat record shop in the street because it didn't have a shop front of its own so to speak - it was actually located in the basement of a retro clothes store in London.
Once you got down the steep steps you ended up in this brilliant Aladdin's cave of a record shop caught in a 1960's/70's time warp!
It specialised in ska, reggae, and R&B in the main, one of the reasons Mods visited it, but as you can see from the interior shots, it also had blues, disco and jazz rarities in the racks.
As well as the records, the shop had all sorts of amazing pieces of period equipment and artifacts strewn around the place making it seem almost like a living museum!
I took these photos of Downbeat in 2003.
The little ad under the snaps shows its whereabouts.
And to accompany the items I have picked out the "Tighten Up vol 2" LP from my own collection because you'll notice on the 2nd photo that this was one of the covers they had up on the wall.
The album itself, which is a ska-rocksteady styled compilation, is dated 1969, although mine was purchased from a 2nd hand shop around the late 1970's/early 80's.

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