Gutbrain Records

Thursday, 11 August 2005

Yesterday I went to Footlight Records for probably the last time. After 30 years as a shop specializing in theatre and film music, they're being forced by a rent increase to abandon their space on W 12th St and go "internet only".

The same thing happened to Midnight Records a year or two ago. They specialized in rock and roll, and are listed in the back of Nick Tosches's Unsung Heroes of Rock 'n' Roll as a good source for recordings of the artists he writes about.

Midnight Records was priced out of their space on W 23rd street after 20 years of business. Now there's a Ben & Jerry's at that address. I'm beginning to think we should change the name of the city to New New York™.

When Footlight made it known that they would be leaving their space, they discounted all of their vinyl by 75%. I dropped by and bought some random things. Most of them I could have lived without, but the soundtrack to Spellbound is worth having, as is Kenyon Hopkins's music for a TV show called The Reporter.

Yesterday I was walking by Footlight Records and I saw a CD in the window, soundtrack music for the television show Burke's Law. I kept walking, then stopped.

I don't really like Burke's Law much — though there's at least one episode worth watching, which stars John Cassavetes as a Marlon Brando/The Wild One-type biker who lands the lead role in a production of Hamlet and delivers all of his lines in biker/beatnik poet argot ("To be or, like, not to be, man!")— and I couldn't remember anything about the music.

But I turned around and entered the shop. I found the CD on the new releases shelf and right behind it was another CD on the same label, of soundtrack music for the television show Honey West.

I had the same reaction. Don't really care about the show, can't remember the music. Both CDs were $22.95 for about 30 minutes of music, not much of a deal.

Then I noticed that track #9 on the Burke's Law CD was called "Drum Madness". And I remembered that Honey West had cool opening credits. I bought them both. I'm listening to Honey West right now and it's quite nice.

For me, that was a quintessential Footlight Records episode. I'll miss them.