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(…and an ode to the independent record stores we love)

Today is Record Store Day – a day close to our hearts, as Shambala sparked to life within the walls of our very own record store… so, what better day to launch our very own vinyl slip mats?! These 12-inch beauties are printed in a brand new, full colour Shambala illustration by artist in residence Ed Dingli – featuring all manner of ‘wild and free’ creatures from Ed’s brilliant brain.

You can buy a single, for your record player, for just £12 – or buy a pair for your decks! These are super limited edition – so grab yours while stocks last, here! – and keep reading for our top recommendations for independent vinyl stores that we love..

A little walk down memory lane…

Back in the nineties, in Birmingham, Shambala’s founders (and owners to this day) were facing the unappealing prospect of gainful employment after University. It was so unappealing that we decided to open our very own record store instead – Jibbering Records, in Moseley.

Jibbering Records was part vinyl treasure trove, part community centre, art gallery and internet café. It was our window to the world and a hub for all our various activities (as well as the HQ of our failed, organic veg box scheme – turns out we were way ahead of our time on that one – rotting veg and records don’t mix anyway!)

Do we miss it? Yes. It’s a plant shop now apparently, which is cool because we also like plants very much.

Are we still obsessed with independent record stores? Also yes – which is why we wanted to use today to shine a spotlight on the stores that we love – please do go out and support them!

Longwell Records – Keynsham

“The man who runs this shop is an absolute legend of a human being. Very friendly and knowledgable, with a great selection – and also, they stock my grandma’s record so I’ll always love them for that. They’ve opened up a second store in Whapping Wharf in Bristol now as well.” Orianna – Music Bookings & Artist Logistics

Rooster Records – Exeter

“This is a super cute, little independent record shop. I used to go here with my grandad and it’s where I bought my first vinyls as a kid, before continuing to go well into my teens and adult life. Super friendly and knowledgeable staff who recommended loads of albums that grew to be my all time favourites” Amia – Marketing & Design

 The Diskery – Birmingham

“The Diskery was the first record store I ever found in Birmingham and remains one of the best. The oldest record store in Brum and maybe even a contender for the oldest in the country. An absolute paradise for deep diggin’!” Dan – Founder/Music Director

Specialist Subject Records – Bristol

“This absolute gem of a shop is upstairs from one of my favourite venues (The Exchange) and as a total punk and folk-punk fiend, I can – and frequently do – lose hours flicking through their treasures. If you’re in the South West and punk, indie, hardcore or metal is your bag, it’s more than worth a trip.” Becka – Director

Piccadilly Records – Manchester

“Piccadilly records is an absolute bastion of Manchester culture – this place has been going since 1979. It was always a pilgrimage for me in my earliest teenage years! I can’t pick just one, so special mention also goes to Lion Vibes Brixton in London- a total reggae treasure trove over 2 floors – and also Sister Ray and Soul Jazz in London too – huge selections including second hand gems”. Jon – Founder/Director

Wanted Records – Bristol

This gem is run by John Stapleton, a truly legendary Bristol based DJ, crate digger and promoter – who has played at Shambala for donkeys years. John has records from all over the world and probably a few other places too..!’ Leigh – Roots Corner Venue Manager

Spinadisc Records – Northampton

“This place defined my youth, as it did for many of my mates. Its where I found and bought all the records which shaped my formative years. It’s where we used to skate outside of, smoke round the corner from, feed chips to the pigeons and try to avoid fights with the ‘townies’! It’s was mecca for the towns alternative youth. The physical shop is sadly no more, but they still sell online!” Jack – Technical Production

Andy’s Records – Aberystwyth

Such an amazing man with an amazing selection. This place has been an institution in Aberystwyth for over 40 years. No website, but check out his Facebook page or just get down there in person!” Sam – Naughty Morty’s Venue Manager

Zudrangma Records – Bangkok

Since relocating to Bangkok with my family a few years ago, I’ve been LOVING Zudrangma Records especially as it reminds me so much of our beloved old record shop, Jibbering Records! The vibe, layout and a lot of world music and reggae..” Oli – Founder/Director

Friendly Records – Bristol

The clues in the name, the friendliest staff imaginable – and by night, it turns into a music venue with a bar – what’s not to love?!” Abi – Creative Programmer

Discovery Music – Barnstaple

“This spot is legendary (to North Devon folk anyway). Matt is SO passionate about music and second hand vinyl. This is a real treasure trove – and, impressively, they’ve been going over 30 years but still have absolutely no online presence (find them HERE on google maps though”). Sarah – Production.

Get out there and support your independent record stores – you’d miss ’em if they were gone!