Record Store Spotlight: Schoolkids Records, NC

In this Record Store Spotlight we spoke with Stephen Judge, owner of Schoolkids Records. With locations in both Chapel Hill and Raleigh, NC, Schoolkids are a founding member of the CIMS Coalition (the first national Coalition of Independent Music Stores) and have been named one of the top 10 record stores in the United States by Time Magazine.


Q. How long have you been in business?


Since 1974, I have been the owner since 2012. But started working with Schoolkids in 1990.


Q. Can you give some background about the store?


Schoolkids has been around for almost 50 years, it was the store I grew up with and I started working for them in December 1990. I left for a job at Redeye Distribution/Yep Roc Records in 2002 (first as Sales & Marketing Director) and eventually promoted to the companies first General Manager.. and then as a result of that position, saw the vinyl resurgence coming back first hand and knew my former boss was burned out and ready to close the shops. So I negotiated buying Schoolkids so I could expand our Vinyl selection and also open a bar in both locations (Raleigh and Chapel Hill) as I felt like that was the way into the future for shops.


"We pride ourselves in being a shop that no matter what style of music you like, you can shop with us. "

Q. Do you focus on any particular genres of music or any specific formats?


No, we pride ourselves in being a shop that no matter what style of music you like, you can shop with us. We do tend to have our best sales in indie rock and classic rock, but we sell all genres.


Q. What are some of your best sellers?


It varies, from Avett Brothers, Tame Impala, Jason Isbell, Tyler the Creator, Taylor Swift, Fleetwood Mac to Idles


This was our best seller list for 2021:


RADIOHEAD

FLEETWOOD MAC

KENDRICK LAMAR

BRIDGERS,PHOEBE

TAYLOR SWIFT

BILLIE EILISH

KENDRICK LAMAR

LED ZEPPELIN

PINK FLOYD

TYLER, THE CREATOR

NEUTRAL MILK HOTEL

CHILDISH GAMBINO

STURGILL SIMPSON

LED ZEPPELIN

ADELE

SNAIL MAIL

HARRY STYLES

BON IVER

TAYLOR SWIFT

GIBBS,FREDDIE & MADLIB


Q. What are the biggest challenges you think the store will have to navigate in the next ten years?


Continue to grow and diversify our business and navigating the growth, especially with Vinyl and current supply chain issues.


Q. Any staff favorites?


Dry Cleaning, Snail Mail would be favorites amongst most of the staff. But the staff is all over the place and listens to a wide variety of music.


Q. Anything else you want customers to know? (do you feature live in-store performances? Have a cozy listening room, etc?).


Yes, both stores have a full PA and we have instores and performances, both stores also have a full ABC Beer license and serve beer.


Schoolkids Records - Raleigh, NC

2237 Avent Ferry Rd., Suite 101 Raleigh, NC 27606

919-821-7766

raleigh@schoolkidsrecords.com

Monday - Sunday: 11:00am-7:00pm


Chapel Hill

405-C W Franklin St

Chapel Hill, NC 275169-960-9272

chapelhill@schoolkidsrecords.com

Monday - Sunday: 11:00am-7:00pm


https://www.instagram.com/schoolkidsrecords/


Schoolkids also operates a record label, which you can check out here!

https://label.schoolkidsrecords.com/






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