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Best Music Store 

Monster Music & Movies

Readers Pick

click to enlarge JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek

Owner Galen Hudson — who’s been a part of Monster Music & Movies since the location’s Manifest Records days — and the entire Monster crew go the extra mile day in and day out to ensure you get the best ever record store experience, a thing that they seem hellbent on preserving. So it’s really no wonder that Monster Music & Movies snagged the readers’ pick for Best Music Store.

“I don’t really feel proud — I think that’s too selfish, and I think a certain degree of our success is being lucky, being in the right place at the right time, and not making as many dumb, or unlucky, mistakes as you see some businesses make sometimes,” he says. “What I find the most gratifying, though, is that folks really appreciate what we do, and I’d like to think their discovery process at the store mirrors mine in the stores I went to in my teens and 20s.” From the exhaustive, constantly updated new-release info you can find on Monster’s website and frequent in-store performances to the incredibly helpful employees and the consistently dope Record Store Day shindig they throw every year, the place is just the shit. We, and readers, clearly can’t get enough, because there’s just something about a place that appreciates the soulful, historical quality in the inanimate objects that give us music. “I’m also very glad when people trust us enough to sell us their collections that maybe they’ve built up over a lifetime and really meant a lot to them,” says Hudson. “I take the role of caretaker of music pretty seriously in the hopes that a used record will take on new life for a new owner and offer just as much satisfaction.” —Kelly Rae Smith

Runner-up: Record Stop

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