Best 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, for example, have you discovered every unique little store in town? There are so many great record stores in Amsterdam, selling all kinds of music and genres - and we're here to help you find some of the best, just in time for Record Store Day!
Record Store Day
Record stores and vinyl music have a long and fascinating history, so it's perhaps unsurprising that every year vinyl fans celebrate their favourite format of music. Since 2007, music fans, artists and record stores around the world have come together every spring to celebrate the culture of the independent record store.
Record Store Day is held on one Saturday every April, typically on the third Sunday of the month. In honour of the day, some labels will release a limited number of records pressed specifically for the day, which are only distributed to shops officially registered as participating in the event.
Record Store Day 2023
This year, Record Store Day (or RSD) will be celebrated around the world on Saturday, April 22, 2023 - including here in the Netherlands!
It has already been confirmed over 300 exclusive titles will be released in honour of this year's Record Store Day. International stars such as Taylor Swift, Sam Smith and The Weeknd will all be releasing limited edition vinyls in April, as will a number of famous Dutch artists.
Celebrating Record Store Day in Amsterdam
If you want to get into the RSD spirit in Amsterdam - or indeed in another Dutch city - you can find a list of all the record shops participating on April 22 online on the official Dutch website for Record Store Day.
Where to buy new and used vinyl in Amsterdam
While all these shops sell vinyl, they don't only sell vinyl - many will also offer CDs and other music-related products as well. No matter which genres you’re looking for, all of these offer quality new and used vinyl.
Dutch record stores participating in RSD 2023
These Amsterdam-based shops are all participating in Record Store Day 2023.
Rush Hour Music
When it comes to the hottest underground records and your favourite tracks that you haven't heard yet, Rush Hour 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; they will know what artist you are talking about, and they will know artists that you'll love but haven't discovered yet.
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 centimetre of floor and shelf space is covered in new and second-hand records. This is an independent record store at its best.
Along with a great variety of genres, Recordmania 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 this place has been a well-known address for many record lovers.
Concerto is a household name in Amsterdam. With its huge selection of new and second-hand CDs, LPs and DVDs in any genre you can think of, it's no surprise that it is a hotspot for music lovers. Check their website for upcoming instore events or to place an online order via their webshop.
RecordFriend specialises in second-hand, and stocks more than 15.000 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.
This is a great tip for those living outside of Amsterdam, as Velvet Music has 10 shops located across nine different cities in the Netherlands - only one of which is in the Dutch capital. The company also has an online store for those unwilling to brave the outdoors to get their vinyl fix, and sells a wide variety of genres on artists both on vinyl and on CD.
Other record shops in Amsterdam
While these shops haven't registered themselves for RSD 2023, they're still great places to go to stock up on vinyl.
Waxwell Records is a specialised record store located in the heart of historic Amsterdam. Established in 2005, the shop sells used and new vinyl for DJs, record collectors and music enthusiasts and has a unique and extensive collection of vinyl from all over the world.
Second Life Music
As the name suggests, 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.
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 street markets and flea markets across the city always have a few vendors with crates full of cheap records you can browse.
Did we miss any of your favourite stores? Share them will fellow music fans in the comments below!