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Tower Records: West Hollywood’s Landmark Reopened for One Night

The Tower Records building on Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood reopened on Friday just for one night, all thanks to a new documentary about the record store. Colin Hank’s film, All Things Must Pass: The Rise and Fall of Tower Records explores the history and the legacy of Tower Records.

Tower Records was more than just a store with music. From its founding in 1960 to its closure in 2006, Tower was the place that carried cultural trends, where people would gather together and was a library for music lovers. Large stores had music catalogs that couldn’t compete in the age of digital downloads and discount retailers, but the spirit and history of this music store still lives on. Aside from having CDs and cassette tapes, stores also sold DVDs, video games, accessories, toys, and electronic gadgets. The most famous Tower Records outlet was the one located on the north side of Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood, California.

Hank’s documentary premiered in theaters Friday, October 16, but the celebration of its premiere took place one day prior at none other than the famous outlet on Sunset Boulevard. The celebration had a special performance from Eagles of Death Metal, a side project of Queens of the Stone Age frontman Josh Homme. The film is about the great rise and collapse of the retail music industry. Both high-profile customers, Elton John and Bruce Springsteen both appear in the film, and talk about Tower Records and its founder Russ Solomon. The film tells a story that should be seen on-screen and gives a deep appreciation of a long-gone store.

All Things Must Pass: The Rise and Fall of Tower Records is now playing at the ArcLight theatre in Hollywood, CA.

Tower Records Site
Tower Records on Wednesday, 14 of October 2015, Photo by Michael Sandoval/M.U.S.E.
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