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Record Shop On Christmas Steps In Bristol

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Does anyone else remember a great little record shop on Christmas Steps in Bristol?  Went there a few times around 1971 or 72.  I'm pretty sure it was run by an elderly couple and it was really unusual because they had a lot of deleted stuff but it was all stored behind the counter in brown cardboard boxes; one for each label.  So you basically had to ask, what have you got on Cameo Parkway?  Anything on Oriole or Stateside?  They would rummage around and produce the goodies (if you were lucky).  It was all 50 pence. My Brother-in-law cleared out a lot of good stuff from there including  quite a bit of Motown on Oriole, and an Eddie Holland Jamie, but I still have a few things I snaffled to this day, nothing really rare but lovely to get in mint condition - things like the Jaynetts Sally go round and Dee Dee Sharp Do the Bird.

 

Never heard anyone mention it - was it completely off the radar, or did I dream it?

Edited by Dayo

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was a shop similar on picton street on the outskirts of st pauls..closed in the late 90s but was run by an old couple and they had a written details on cards of everything they sold and had in stock..got a mention in neil rushtons book soul stories,cant remember who but the first play of Frankie and johnny at yate was bought there apparently

 

all before my time down here I just caught the end of the picton st shop and bought lots of reggae but nothing rare..john stapleton would know more as he was here in the late 70s

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Dean

 

Saying Picton Street was ran by an old couple makes me feel bloody ancient. I was in there for 2/3 times a week from 1970 til the early 80's. Ray, the younger of the 2 was about 30 when I first went. I went mainly for contemporary stuff, but a collector called John Gough, who I never met, had a box of recent stuff (US and UK) that he must have got fed up with quickly at 40p each. This was how I got my pink Carstairs.

I used to get around to a dozen or so junk shops in Bristol that always had boxes of records but I never knew about the one on Christmas Steps, famous for it's Joke Shop.

One record shop on Gloucester Rd, Disc 'N Tape, had a box on the counter full of current UK demos for 40p. I always assumed they were left by a Rep. I got half the Grapevine singles on demo and a lot of Motown, including "Rode by the Place" Green Demo.

Was I the only one doing this at the time?

 

John

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was a shop similar on picton street on the outskirts of st pauls..closed in the late 90s but was run by an old couple and they had a written details on cards of everything they sold and had in stock..got a mention in neil rushtons book soul stories,cant remember who but the first play of Frankie and johnny at yate was bought there apparently

 

all before my time down here I just caught the end of the picton st shop and bought lots of reggae but nothing rare..john stapleton would know more as he was here in the late 70s

 

I remember that shop well and would frequently visit, albeit mostly unsuccessfully as I'd be left with scraps after the big collectors/etc. had gotten first dibs! :(

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Mike, a bit off topic but I saw an advert you placed in Black Music, think it was August 1975, came across it the other night!

Hi Pete, Haven't got any of my old mags/fanzines anymore sadly, but guess it was requesting certain vinyl, applicable at the time????

Kind Regards

Mike Wilks

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Hi Pete, Haven't got any of my old mags/fanzines anymore sadly, but guess it was requesting certain vinyl, applicable at the time????

Kind Regards

Mike Wilks

 

Yeah it was mate, I'll try and find it again, found one from Mick Smith selling soul packs as well, 1974

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Dean

 

Saying Picton Street was ran by an old couple makes me feel bloody ancient. I was in there for 2/3 times a week from 1970 til the early 80's. Ray, the younger of the 2 was about 30 when I first went. I went mainly for contemporary stuff, but a collector called John Gough, who I never met, had a box of recent stuff (US and UK) that he must have got fed up with quickly at 40p each. This was how I got my pink Carstairs.

 

Different shop, I think.

 

RCA on Picton Street never sold second hand records, only new stuff, so not sure how John Gough (who's still collecting and DJing here, by the way) could have been selling his records there. I'll ask him next time I see him!

 

They would never have had the Carstairs 45 as they only sold UK releases.

Edited by john s

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All their stock was there from week of release - Mr. Pugh never had a sale, which is why the killer records were still there, you just had to know what to ask for. I didn't discover it until the 80s, so I picked up funk records - Jackson Sisters, JBs, Equals, Lyn Collins and so on - plus odd bits of 60s soul, ska, reggae and mod that had somehow been left behind. Then a mate went in after me and cleaned out the progressive rock labels - Deram, Harvest, Vertigo, Neon, Nepentha....

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Different shop, I think.

 

RCA on Picton Street never sold second hand records, only new stuff, so not sure how John Gough (who's still collecting and DJing here, by the way) could have been selling his records there. I'll ask him next time I see him!

 

They would never have had the Carstairs 45 as they only sold UK releases.

Dead right i had MANY top British things from there early seventies,all brand spanking new(i was on block release at Brunel college for a while) Suprised people with what turned up on British labels at the time ie,Shane Martin,Jon Ford,etc strangely enough i missed a Little Anthony -better use your head thought it would have gone years earlier!(Bob Meen bought it when i was playing Robin Wilson at Yate)

I actually got to hear about the place(or conned the secret name Picton st) one saturday lunchtime in a alcohol and  :rofl:  :rofl:  session with Froggy Taylor and Richard Selwood in the Wax Machine :wicked: Froggy had just arrived with The Marketts-Stirrin´up some soul absolutely mint(and newly discovered/played)he had previously had Fathers Angels,Hoagy Lands etc :yes: etc

when i got pissed off with the scene late seventies i gave Manny the address and Clarkie :wicked: and i believe they both did well from there as did Pete Widdison also.

There were many shops on the Gloucester road MHE. disc and tape loads of junk shops etc, i actually bumped into Jerry Hipkiss one time i was on the hunt(but didn´t mention Picton St)

i got most of the now popular US Buddah/Curtom stuff from MHE but it was too soulfull :g: at the time(not stomp stomp)and as i was a philistine not a collector i got rid :(

never knew about christmas steps though Flloydy :( but then again i got plenty of stuff from your gaff(Worcester)iePanic the day after it was first played at The Cats :thumbup: (Thursday)

 

Could spend ages with stories but have to dash to work :(

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Forgot to mention,Picton St you had to have the catalogue numbers,i had a number of pop singles catalogues from the sixties which in a fuel induced state i would read from cover to cover every suday night :yes::lol:  even sent off for things that sounded interesting eg Amazon Trust-Run baby run on Polydor (shit i thought) until i later found out they became Godley and Cream :( etc

Steve

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Different shop, I think.

 

RCA on Picton Street never sold second hand records, only new stuff, so not sure how John Gough (who's still collecting and DJing here, by the way) could have been selling his records there. I'll ask him next time I see him!

 

They would never have had the Carstairs 45 as they only sold UK releases.

John

 

Definitely the same shop. John Gough had a box left on the counter, 40p a pop, the shop sold them on his behalf.

 

Although memory fades after 40 years I,m sure thats where I got The Carstairs. All John Gough's records had his initials on in a fancy scroll.

 

John

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Thanks for the replies.

 

That shop on Picton Street sounds amazing - similar in many ways to the one of Christmas steps I mentioned.  Actually we had originally gone there to visit the joke shop! They had loads of mint British issues but you couldn't browse - had to know what you wanted and ask, they were all stored in those old brown cardboard boxes that held 25 singles in each.

 

Had one or two little hits in the junk shops on Gloucester Road too.  A mint UK demo of Rufus Lumley for 10 pence was one highlight.  Also found a very knackered copy of Landy's Dr Good Soul on Moonshot - how the heck did THAT get there?!  It's odd I can't remember things I did last week, but finding odd records in very ofdd locations 40 years ago?  No problem!

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One of my regulars in my shop (a rock'n'roll collector) told me that he used to go in the Picton Street shop in the late 60s, buying the rare London and Brunswick 45s that were still in stock. Mr. Pugh, whose shop it was, originally opened in the mid-50s.

 

In 1977, he decided to switch exclusively to stocking reggae, which he did until he closed up about 10 years ago, stocking all the new 12"s every week - but the 'old stuff' was still there if you knew how to ask. 

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