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October 24, 1978 - Image 20

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1978-10-24
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The Michigan Daily-Tuesd

Page 8-Tuesday, October 24, 1978-The Michigan Daily

Cashing in on recycled re(

When I first walked into Wazo
Records three years ago, I couldn't
quite believe my eyes. Used records,
.thousands of 'em, were piled high in a
room that couldn't have been much
larger than a dorm single. I started to
browse, and within ten minutes or so, I
was holding fifteen albums in my hand.
It was as if some kindly soul had left
me all the records I had wanted for
years, but for which I had been unable
to pay. However with pices ranging
from $1.75 to $2.25, everything seemed
affordable. My subsequent trips to
Wazoo that year were like pilgrimages;
I'd go in with $10 or $20 in my hand and
walk out with five or ten albums I feld I
couldn't do without
I ALSO made a habit of visiting the
used records section at the University
Cellar several times a week. There, I
found several hundred records, priced
anywhere from 50 cents to four or five
dollars. Though their selection didn't
match Wazoo's, and many records
were almost as expensive as new ones,
I nevertheless found some good buys,
including Truth and Beck-Ola by the
Jeff Beck Group for a buck each, and
three early albums by Joe Cocker for
about $5.
Today, I find myself selling records
more often thar buying them.
Naturally, I go to Wazoo and the
University Cellar.
Today, I find myself selling records
more often than buying them.
Naturally, I go to Wazoo and the
University Cellar.
Wazoo recently took over moderately
spacious quarters on the second floor of
209 South State Street. Though no
longer cramped, Wazoo is still brim-
ming with records. Brian Gunderson,
who has been holding down the store
since Wazoo first opened its doors in the
summer of 1974, estimated that five to
six thousand albums are for sale at one
time. Stashed away behind his coupter,
filling shelf upon shelf in a separate
room, are 11,000 others, most of them
duplicates of records on the floor.
Still, he says, "we can never get
enough good used records."
IF YOU bring in some albums to be
sold at Wazoo, Gunderson or one of his
two assistants will quickly sort through
the discs, checking for scratches, sur-
face noise, fingerprints, cover con-
dition, dust, dirt, and wax. Unless the
record's in satisfactory condition,
chances are they won't buy it. They also
won't buy records they don't think
could be sold. If the record is by a name
band or artist, and is in good shape, it'll
probably; pass through Wazoo's tight
Wazoo pays between one dollar and
two dollars per disc, depending on
popularity-of the artist and condition. If
you've got quite a few records in
mediocre shape, they might offer you a
buck or two for the whole lot. They'll
end up in the 50 cent bins. The rest of
your records will be sold for $2 to $3 per
By refusing to buy records in poor
shape, Wazoo is able to offer its
customers a quality guarantee. If the
record you bought is defective in any
way, you'll be able to exchange it for
another copy of the same album,
another album, or a credit slip.
"We try to give people a fair shake,"
Gunderson notes.
IT'S WORTH a trip to Wazoo just to
look at the collection of old rock
posters, antique record covers, and
colored albums that adorn the walls.
You'l lofinid hundreds of R&B recor-

ds to choose from, including aee by
James Brown, Ray Charles, Aretha
Franklin, Diana Ross, and the Four
Tops; over two thousand rock albums,
including ones by the Beach Boys,
David Bowie, Elton John, the Ramones,
and Graham Parker; and a thousand
jazz LPs by artists such as Airto,
Larry Coryell, Ornette Coleman, Elvin
Jones, and Herbie Mann. Wazoo also
has sizable collections of blues, folk,
country, reggae, comedy, soundtrack,
bluegrass, and classical albums.
The University Cellar's used records
section has shrunk to a couple of racks
in the last few years. Still, many
bargains can be found in the 75 to 100
records you'll find. there at any one
time. A week ago, The Who's Magic Bus

was going for $2.00, Steely Dan's Aja
was $3.00, Return to Forever's No
Secrets was $1.75, and Bob Seger's Liv-
.Bullet (a double LP) was $2.50.
UNLIKE WAZOO, the Cellar doesn't
buy and sell" used albums. Record
owners bring their albums in, place a
card with a price they want to make on,
the front, and hope they sell. If a record
is purchased, the Cellar pockets 50 cen-
ts, and the seller gets the rest. To add to
the fun, Cellar employees mark down
the price of used albums a dollar for
every week they sit in the store. This
means if you arrive at the right time
you can find good albums for just $1.00
or so. Sometimes, you'll even find an
album marked "FREE." I got a couple
of Alice Cooper records for nothing this

tor's :
real e
tion, I
I no to
but c
end r

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