About Pure Vinyl
I was born in Brixton and have lived here all my life. My journey to opening a record shop has been gradual. I have played records since I was 5 and don’t remember a time that records were not important to me.
I played records at home to my family, then in bars and at parties. When children were born and as they grew, I held a monthly residency for over 10 years.
After having children, I didn’t have much money left for buying records, so I had to sell some to be able to buy more. I began to get more serious about this when I began a small record stall and found it also helped to support my family.
With help and support from my partner, family and friends, I opened my first shop in Reliance Arcade in Brixton and moved 4 years ago to a bigger store in Ferndale where we are now.
….so, what gets me up in the morning? It is my passion for the music and the best thing about having a record shop is being able to listen to great music.
We sell new and used records and stock a wide range of genres, but we are specialists in Soul, Jazz & Reggae.
Pure Vinyl has a very wide variety of customers and friends and supporters of the shop. I am helped in the shop by George, Enya, Mark, and Oscar. We have also had many young people come from local schools to get some work experience. We are very much part of the local community and we have welcomed visitors from all over the world.
Our customers are young and old, we are frequented by locals, tourists, collectors, diggers, musicians, families, and anyone who wants to engage or those who are curious, happy or amazed to see vinyl return.
We are based in Brixton amongst an amazing music community, so to begin to mention the famous musicians who have passed through our shop would be lengthy.
We do however have a great love for the sounds of our local community and champion our young musicians.
We stock lots of Jazz with some Soul, Reggae and Hip Hop from our own homegrown talent and we hosted a regular Jazz Jam Night for over a year pre-pandemic. ‘Straight Pocket’ run by singer and keyboard player Renato Pari, has now grown and found a new home here in Brixton.
Really can’t remember the very first but remembered selling Clash London Calling on that day. The last was Fire by Laurel Aitkin…Fire
I was born in Brixton so I remember the reggae record shops my father and brother would go to. I listened and learned from the piles of reggae singles they would collect.
However, my earliest memory of buying a record was from a record shop at the top of New Park Road SW2 where I lived. it was a small independent shop selling the latest chart music and some soul where my sisters would frequent. I remember the day I ran up the road for the first time on my own and with my own money and bought my first seven inch single: Mama Never Told Me by Sister Sledge.
Since I run a record shop myself, I have had so little time to travel to other record shops, but I always try to visit the local record shops when I am away with the family. Recently I have visited a few record shops in Hastings, Brighton, and Deal.
I love all the record shops here in Brixton and will pop in on them all. Universal Roots, Supertone and Lion Vibes are all doing an amazing job keeping reggae alive in Brixton.
My favourite however will always be Universal Roots as it was my first shop and is based in the heart of Brixton.
Maceo De La Soul and TY and then The Last Poets at Pure Vinyl Brixton. Legendary, moving and emotional.
Unfortunately, I don’t get to many gigs anymore, but I was fortunate to go to this year’s We Out Here festival on the Sunday. Got lost even before we left London but after that everything fell into place, and I was able to see every act that I went to see. Moses Boyd, Kokoroko, Sons of Kemet, Straight Pocket with Renato Paris and No Long Tings Memorial Stage for TY. An amazing day!
Other Participating Shops