College students can find fun in the most atypical of places: the bookstore.
A new book by Rolling Stone magazine Contributing Editor Jenny Eliscu does just that in Schools That Rock: The Rolling Stone College Guide. It’s a guide that lets every college student in on the best music scene any college town or city has to offer.
Of the many music scenes mentioned in the book, Eliscu delves into the heart of Philadelphia’s finest venues and record stores, informing the reader of where to catch the best performance or buy the rarest album.
Choosing not only to cover the bigger venues (The Tower Theater, Tweeter Center and Electric Factory), Schools That Rock takes readers to some of the most indie gigs in Philly.
The Trocadero or “The Troc,”1003 Arch St., is one of the unique spots for a concert in Philadelphia. Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, The Troc holds about 1,200 on its ground floor while providing a more personal setting for bands with its balcony.
The bands that grace the stage range from Motorhead to Stephen Malkmus, but it’s more than just a concert venue; “Movie Mondays” have become a classic staple in Troc history, providing some of the best cult films such as A Clockwork Orange or Say Anything for only $3.
The First Unitarian Church, 2125 Chestnut St., is one of the best intimate gigs around, held in the most unlikely of places, a basement of a church. The First Unitarian captures some of the best shows in Philly for a cheap price. Over the years acts such as The Yeah Yeah Yeah’s, Bright Eyes, Zao and Atmosphere have taken the stage.
Headed by R5 productions, which puts together most do-it-yourself shows in Philly, R5 strives to stray from making The Church a typical corporate type venue by keeping prices low, bottled water cheap and bouncers nice.
The Kyhber Pass, 56 S. Second St., Theater of Living Arts, 334 South St., and North Star Bar, 2639 Poplar St., are some of the other top indie spots mentioned in the book for a great musical experience.
Pointing readers in the right direction for an album, Schools That Rock lets students in on great record stores around Philadelphia:
Spaceboy Music, a small record store located at 409 South St., has a ground floor filled with the latest music out, but it’s the small floor that makes Spaceboy.
Packed with unreleased music, not to mention a 99-cent bin that stocks some of the most classic albums, Spaceboy sets the standard in providing a great music purchasing haven.
Repo Records, 538 South St., indulges in the best punk indie rock b-sides and rarities.
At Repo, you are sure to find such items like The Screamer’s Live 1978 In San Francisco or classics like M83’s Before the Dawn Heal Us. The staff at Repo is also what makes the record store so elite; the employees are very knowledgeable about music.
Some other record stores mentioned in the book are the classic Tower Records on Avenue of the Arts, AKA Music on Second Street and Spruce Street Records and Tapes.
If you’re looking for a book that lets you in on the college music scene, Schools That Rock is the guide for you.
Solomon Sofolawe can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.