Editor's Note: This article is part of a new online series launched in July 2023 by the City of Gainesville intended to highlight and promote must-try businesses in the area of the historic square in downtown Gainesville, Georgia. As the community continues to flourish and welcome new restaurants, retailers and service providers – especially within the downtown corridor – leadership wishes to introduce available offerings to residents and visitors alike ahead of their next trip to the City of Gainesville. Must-Try Monday features will be released weekly via gainesville.org and the @GainesvilleGeorgiaGovernment (City of Gainesville, Georgia) Facebook page. Be sure to "Like" and follow us on social media so you don't miss the latest and greatest about the Hospitality Capital of the World!
Moe's Record Shop | 119 Bradford St. NE | 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, noon-6 p.m. Sunday
GAINESVILLE, Ga. (Dec. 11, 2023) – Someone once said, "Music is the universal language of mankind." And, in our opinion, no truer words have ever been spoken ... just ask the folks at Moe's Record Shop!
Moe's Record Shop is a locally owned and operated record store in historic downtown Gainesville.
"I sell mostly records, that’s 90% of it – new and used vinyl of all genres," states Owner Moe Lyons. "I’ve got a few T-shirts and a few CDs that I carry, and that’s what I sell."
So if you're in the market for good music – look no further than Moe's Record Shop.
Learn the ins and outs of Moe’s Record Shop, what makes it a Must-Try Monday-worthy business and why you should make it a destination the next time you're near downtown Gainesville by reviewing the exclusive Q+A with Lyons below.
Q: When did your business open and where? If your business has operated at other locations, please list those.
A: I first opened up in Flowery Branch in 2019, and then I moved up here in 2020, just before the pandemic. I’ve been here ever since then.
Q: What drew you to operate your business in downtown Gainesville?
A: I wasn’t even planning on coming up here. These guys opened up a store over here, Imperial Records, and they were closing the store. I was asked if I wanted to move up here, and I said “Sure.” I moved up here, and it's night and day. There’s no comparison between here and downtown Flowery Branch. I looked back the other day and figured out that I had done more (sales) in one weekend here than I did in a whole month in Flowery Branch.
Q: What kinds of products and/or services does your business offer to the public?
A: I sell albums, CDs and I have gift certificates that people can buy if they want to give that as a gift or something like that. I buy albums from people, too ... that and CDs, but there’s not much of a market for CDs yet, but they’re coming back. In about two or three years, they’re going to blow up again.
Q: Can you give some examples of unique products and/or services you offer that aren’t easily replicated elsewhere in town?
A: I get unique things all the time. Somebody just brought this album from "Superman", the animated series, that's shaped like the Superman logo. I try to find hard-to-get things for people like that sometimes.
Q: What offerings are you most proud of and why? Give us the scoop!
A: I just love what I do. I love people coming in and buying music from me. I really enjoy that.
Q: Do you target a specific audience? If so, can you please specify?
A: Not particularly, it’s mostly younger people in the 18-40 age range, and I actually sell about as much new music as I do old music. I’d say it's about 50-50 now.
Q: What is your favorite “must try” item you offer and why?
A: Most people come in and ask what I recommend, and I direct them toward jazz because I like a lot of jazz stuff. I love '70s and '80s jazz groups like Weather Report, Return to Forever, Stanley Clarke, Chick Corea. I suggest to people that they look for something different to try and jazz is what I love.
Q: In your own words, what makes your business a positive addition to the downtown cityscape?
A: There’s nobody else around here. I don’t know where my closest competition even is. I have a unique store here, and a lot of people come in and tell me that they haven’t seen a record store in years, which is really cool. People need a good record store and I think the next-closest one is in Gwinnett.
Q: If you have other locations nearby, can you please provide what cities you’re located in?
A: Nope. I closed the Flowery Branch location when I moved here. I opened that in 2019 and the guys that were here before me sent me a message saying they were closing the store up and asked if I was interested in moving up here, and I said “Sure.” I moved up here in March of 2020 and couldn’t open up until May because of everything going on, and it’s been great ever since. Every month I can tell it was an increase (in sales) over the last year.
Q: Anything else you’d like to add?
A: I love being in downtown Gainesville. I worked for the City [of Gainesville, Georgia] for a long time and I love seeing everyone come by and shop here, and all the other places downtown. There’s a lot of stuff going on down here now.
PHOTO CUTLINE | Moe's Record Shop is located at 119 Bradford St. NE on the historic square in downtown Gainesville. Find additional photos shared via the @GainesvilleGeorgiaGovernment Facebook page.