Jim Furlong, Last Vestige Music Shop – Interview – BizInt

Written by on April 18, 2024

Jim Furlong, Last Vestige – Interview – BizInt – by Liam Sweeny.

RRX: Who are you? What is the name of your business, and what do you make/do?

JF: Jim Furlong. Owner of Last Vestige Music Shop Albany, NY. The shop buys, trades and sells used vinyl LPs, singles, CDs, tapes and some audio equipment. Also a mail order business since 1989.

RRX: If you could only offer one thing, one good, one specific service, that would really show what you’re all about, what is it, and why?

JF: The shop offers KNOWLEDGE on various genres of music. Due to my thirst and love for music of all types, I can discuss with most patrons, information and or opinions on most any style of music, dating back to the ealy 20th Century up through the end of the century. And what I don’t know, I learn about it OR my staff, who is younger than myself knows a lot more about the last 20-30 years of pop, rock, metal, punk, indie, hiphop and other subcultures of music.

RRX: What sparked your interest in starting the business you started? Was it something you were already good at? Or did you just jump in the pool nose first?

JF: I was a buyer/ collector of music since I was 10 years old. Started with top 40 singles in the mid 60s and graduated to LPs by 1968. I started going to record collector shows in the mid-late 70s and saw the market to buy/ sell as interesting. Mostly to get more records I was looking for. After working at new and used shops and getting my “chops” in the buying/ selling and mail order biz, I took the leap as a mail order only business in 1984 as a part time job. Went full time with it in 1987. Established the shop in 1989

RRX: What do you see as your angle? What makes you better than other people out there running a similar business?

JF: The shop caters to most every music taste. We carry all genres of rock of course. But we have an extensive, jazz, soul, country, folk, blues, soundtrack, vocals departments. As well as a large 45RPM section, ethnic, spoken word, children’s sections, a nice cassette department, and so much more.

RRX: How has the economy affected your business? Setbacks? Any opportunities right now?

JF: The ups and downs of the economy can affect us of course. The shop has had ‘tight’ months in the past. Covid shut the shop down for 3 months in 2020 as was forced upon us. But we held on with the mail order and temporary layoffs (we should have had a liquor license). Since reopening the shop and mail order have been doing quite well, knock on wood, some fantastic collections have been coming in the last 3-4 years.

RRX: What is on the horizon for you? Any new products? Any new offerings? Let us be your sounding board!

JF: Hoping to expand our budget vinyl department and adding a 78RPM shellac section and possibly an 8Track section for the small but discriminating collectors.



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