On Sunday, Tower Records, an institution in the retail music world and one of the first and largest record store chains in the world, closed its doors for good, after liquidating its entire inventory. The 14,000 sq. foot Lower Queen Anne store at 5th and Roy opened in 1976 and was the first Tower Records to open outside of California. So when Tower filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in August and announced all stores would be closing, Paul Grant, the president of Silver Platters, jumped at the chance to fill the vacated space with a new Silver Platters location. Although there are currently three Silver Platters locations (in Northgate, Bellevue, and Tukwila), this will be its first centralized location.
“It’s got a real indie feel to it,” he says of the building.
Silver Platters and its inventory of more than 100,000 titles will create a bit more competition for nearby Easy Street, though Grant says “We’re slightly different. There is room for both of us.”
Easy Street, who frequently book bands and artists to play in-stores before their club shows later that night, will also now have to contend with the larger stage in Silver Platters. “We have a great opportunity for some big in-store performances,” says Grant.
Of course, Silver Platters just recently began selling used CDs and currently only sell new vinyl, but their plans with the new downtown store include moving towards selling used vinyl, and expanding their used CD section. And like Tower, Silver Platters will have robust classical and jazz sections, though it’ll make an effort to be a more aggressive with its pricing. Steep prices were part of the reason why Tower Records ultimately went under.
Grant says the store will open on January 20th, only one week after Silver Platters takes control of the lease.