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Top four record stores in LA

By Aoife ’25

While Spotify is one of the most downloaded apps ever according to Forbes, the rise of vinyl in the past several years has been remarkable – and for good reason. Obviously, Spotify has its perks, however, not only do records sound better, but the experience of going vinyl shopping is so much more exciting than just pressing play on an app. Picking out an album for your best friend, going through stacks of old vinyls and talking to the staffers about their recommendations are just a part of what makes the record shopping experience so special. With Record Store Day approaching on April 22, now is the perfect time to get to know the best record stores in Los Angeles that sell everything from ‘80s ska to indie pop.

  1. Amoeba Music (6200 Hollywood Boulevard): Going to Amoeba Music is like going on a Starline bus tour of LA. It’s a huge store with basically every genre, but I always leave with newer pop and indie albums. Amoeba is also a great place to look for gifts, but they don’t have the best vintage selection (unless you’re looking for a large variety of 7-inch jazz records). Amoeba also sells really cool posters and books.
  1. Counterpoint Records & Books (5911 Franklin Avenue): If you enjoy listening to your dad’s music, check out Counterpoint Records. They have a lot of vintage and used records with a massive jazz and rock section. One of my favorite personal finds was a used copy of “Blood on the Tracks” by Bob Dylan. Counterpoint is homey and has so many classics. If you tend to listen to music released before you were born, definitely take a walk down Franklin Avenue to this record store.
  1. Cosmic Vinyl Cafe (2149 Sunset Boulevard): Cosmic Vinyl is my personal fave. It has such a cool vibe and a comprehensive selection of vintage and indie records. They also have a cafe with a solidly mediocre matcha, but a delicious oat milk latte which makes it a fun place to get a drink and look through delightful records and CDs. 
  1. Sick City Records (1381 Sunset Boulevard): Sick City, located in Echo Park, was a gem I found hidden in a strip mall. If you are a big David Bowie fan (and I know you are), this is a must to check out. They have a huge selection of Bowie’s work, including his live recordings. They also have a large selection of newer indie records.

Overall, some of the best stores found are ones that you just come upon. Even if you don’t leave with a stack of records and CDs, just visiting a record store is such a fun experience that every Angeleno should take advantage of.

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