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The best vinyl record stores in Amsterdam

The best vinyl record stores in Amsterdam

Amsterdam has so much to offer, but it’s not always easy to find everything you are interested in, even if you have lived in the city for many years.

For some things you just have to know where to look. If you’re into vinyl records for example, have you discovered every unique little store in town?

New and used vinyl

This article covers the most popular record stores around the city. The one criteria is that they sell vinyl records, but of course many offer CDs and other music-related products as well.

This list is in no particular order. Which record store you will like the best of course depends on what types of music you’re into. No matter which genres you’re looking for, all of these offer quality new and used vinyl.

Rush Hour Music

When it comes to the hottest underground records and your favourite tracks that you haven't heard yet, Rush Hour on Spuistraat is the place to be for the more discerning fan of electronic music of all sorts.

Founded in 1997, Rush Hour started out by importing obscure house and techno records from around the world. Since then it has also become an important distributor and founded its own record label. Along with Clone Records in Rotterdam, this is probably the single-most important record store in the Netherlands when it comes to electronic music.

The Rush Hour staff are as enthusiastic about the music as their customers, but always seem to be a step ahead. They will know what artist you are talking about, and they will know artists that you'll love but haven't discovered yet.

They are on top of reissues of classic hard-to-find records and limited releases from the best labels around the world. You will find a great selection of used vinyl as well if you need to stock up on Detroit and Chicago classics, for example.

For the "heads", visiting this store can become expensive. There is a lot of quality on offer, and stuff you will find nowhere else. If you need to limit the damage, you can order anything they have via mail order. The store also sells tickets for selected parties and don't be surprised to find big name DJs and producers doing instore performances.

Rush Hour Music address:

Spuistraat 98
1012 TZ Amsterdam

Distortion Records

This store in the Jordaan is a throwback to the record-digger stores of old. Before the internet, Discogs and streaming services, the only way to educate yourself about unknown and obscure music was to spend hours upon hours sorting through and listening to stacks of vinyl.

If you like to lose yourself in crates of records all around you, this will be paradise. If the stale smell of thousands of vinyl records gets your juices flowing, prepare to spend an afternoon at Distortion Records, where about every square centimeter of floor and shelf space is covered in new and second-hand records. This is an independent record store at its best.

Genres: 70s punk rock, jazz, funk, soul, Latin, soundtracks, lo-fi, indie, noise, garage, industrial, 80s and 90s indie, electro, hip hop, reggae, break beats, drum & bass and house.

Distortion Records address:

Westerstraat 244
1015 MT Amsterdam

Record Mania

Along with a great variety of genres, Record Mania is a store where you can make some rare finds. Obscure spoken word records, religious chants, speeches by Martin Luther King Jr, records full of sound effects or bird calls and outer space synth experiments. Since 1994 a well-known address for many record lovers.

Genres include but are not limited to: Beatles, blues, classical, country, electro, experimental, folk, Nederpop, progressive, psychedelic, punk, ska, reggae, rock, soul, funk, soundtrack, spoken word / art, tunes / breaks, world music.

Record Mania address:

Ferdinand Bolstraat 30
1072 LK Amsterdam

Concerto

Concerto is a household name in Amsterdam. Having opened its doors on this very spot on Utrechtsestraat in 1955, it now spans five shop fronts.

Concerto is a hotspot for music lovers and has a huge selection of new and second-hand CDs, LPs and DVDs in any genre you can think of. Check their website for upcoming instore events!

Concerto address:

Utrechtsestraat 52-60
1017 VP Amsterdam


Detroit house legend Theo Parrish visits Record Mania Records in Amsterdam and discusses record digging, music and real DJ-ing.
Copyright: ElectronicBeats Slices

Record Palace

Record Palace specialises in finding rare covers and first pressings and is located across the street from Amsterdam’s popular live venue Paradiso.

Genres: country & folk, Dutch bands & Nederbeat, hard rock & metal, jazz & avantgarde, Latin & Brazil, new wave & punk, pop & rock, psychedelic & progressive, reggae, rock & roll, soul, funk & disco, soundtracks & casts, vocalists, classical, 60s, spoken word, blues, signed records.

Record Palace address:

Weteringschans 33
1017 RV Amsterdam

Waxwell Records

Waxwell Records is a specialised record store located in the heart of historic Amsterdam. They sell used and new vinyl for DJs, record collectors and music enthusiasts. 

Waxwell Records was established in 2005 and has a unique and extensive collection of vinyl from all over the world. You will find a diverse and unique selection of soul, hip hop, funk, jazz, blues, disco, rock, reggae, pop, old-school rap, rare jazz funk 45s, Brazilian LPs, Dutch breaks and much more.

Waxwell Records address:

Gasthuismolensteeg 6
1016 AN Amsterdam

Flesch Records

The only record store that sells apples, pears and potatoes when in season. And the apples taste great! This second-hand record store also sells record players in various shapes and sizes, old radios and other vintage electronics.

Flesch specialises in classical music but also carries a wide variety of genres such as jazz, 1960s and 70s pop, chanson, cabaret, ethnic music and oddities.

If you’re a vinyl aficionado you owe it to yourself to pop by this unique establishment. Even your significant other will enjoy this one! Quality music in a unique setting.

Flesch Records address:

Noorderkerkstraat 16
1015 NB Amsterdam
020-6228185 (no website)

Back Beat Records

In 1988, the American "Sweet Soul Music" singer Arthur Conley opened a small record shop in one of Amsterdam’s trendiest quarters, the Jordaan. Back Beat Records started out with a modest collection, which was mainly aimed at lovers of soul, jazz and rhythm and blues. Today there is a wide range of both CDs and LPs.

Genres: soul, Latin jazz, acid jazz, rock jazz, vocal jazz, fusion, swing, bebop, hard-bop, gospel music, blues, rhythm and blues, New Orleans, Cajun, Zydeco, funk, original funk (from P-funk to free-funk), 60s pop, salsa, world music and the better rhythm and blues.

Back Beat Records address:

Egelantiersstraat 19
1015 PV Amsterdam

RecordFriend

RecordFriend is located near the Nieuwmarkt and stocks more than 30.000 new and used vinyl records. You will find both LPs and 7-inch singles. Their webshop only has a small sample of their inventory, so RecordFriend is definitely worth a visit if you want to browse through their collectables.

Genres: soul, funk, classical, blues, psychedelic, jazz, hip hop, reggae, hard rock, pop and much more.

RecordFriend address:

Sint Antoniesbreestraat 64
1011 HB Amsterdam

Second Life Music

Second Life Music is a second-hand record shop in the centre of Amsterdam. They mainly sell vinyl records, but also CDs, record players, accessories and related items, all second-hand.

Genres: Everything from classical to house, including disco, soul, jazz, pop, rock, Dutch artists and popular music from the 1950s to the 1990s.

Second Life Music address:

Prinsengracht 366
1016 JA Amsterdam

Shopping for vinyl in Amsterdam

These record stores in Amsterdam are by no means the only source for finding vinyl, especially not if you are looking for used records.

The various thrift shops in town (kringloopwinkels) are an excellent place to discover rarities at low prices, and the various markets across the city, such as the one on Waterlooplein, always have a few vendors with crates full of cheap records you can browse.
 

Have you made any great finds in any of these places? Did we miss any of your favourite stores?

 

Thomas

Author

Thomas Lundberg

Born as a Swede in the Netherlands, this life-long expat has spent his time in Belgium, the United States and Amsterdam. He began his professional career as a regional news...

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