Ah, the spring semester is upon us, and slowly into St. Louis the WashU student body trickles in. Hopefully fresh faced for the new semester, maybe they’ll notice the empty storefront on the Loop that was once Streetside Records. Only an address sign, the graffiti wall, and memories remain.
Most likely they won’t.
Well, at least we’ll have Chipotle.
More on that later, I should introduce myself. My call on the radio is DJ Meatface, and I do a house/techno/electronic show on sundays, 4-5. In real life, I’m Brian Mita, the new Electronic Music Director at KWUR. We haven’t had one for a bit, and I’m pretty damned excited to be given this position, because I really enjoy a lot of electronic music; House, Techno and all the derivatives and crossovers in between. Being from Chicago, the birthplace of house music, really helped that. I originally went to WashU waaay back in ’96, dropped out after a few years, and now I’m back finishing up the sculpture degree.
Back to Streetside; yes, it is gone. Not that I missed it, I haven’t stepped foot in it since 2000. It was bought by Trans World some years ago, and it really wasn’t anything special since then. I do remember back when I first went here, that three music stores thrived on the Loop, Vintage, Streetside, and Deep Grooves (catered to DJ’s). It was a different neighborhood then, a little less gentrified, maybe a little seedier, but it seems these days, the unique “hip” neighborhoods are getting “nicer.” If you’re from Chicago, look at Clark and Belmont 10 years ago, and the Six Corners area 10 years ago, compared to today. Is that happening here on Delmar? Does it really matter?
No, it probably doesn’t, because neighborhoods change, and hopefully for the better. With cd sales dropping 50% and music downloads skyrocketing in 2007, the writing is on the wall for most music stores, as it was for travel agencies when the internet first hit. Still, Streetside will be missed as a Loop icon.
Here’s an article about it at PlayBackSTL, with a lot of personal commentary:
And here’s a couple of articles about the changing face of the Loop:
and if you didn’t hear about the CD dying, pay your respects here.
Hope the semester goes well!