Established in 1960, Tower Records was once a retail powerhouse with two hundred stores, in thirty countries, on five continents. From humble beginnings in a small-town drugstore, Tower Records eventually became the heart and soul of the music world, and a powerful force in the music industry. In 1999, Tower Records made $1 billion. In 2006, the company filed for bankruptcy. What went wrong? Everyone thinks they know what killed Tower Records: The Internet. But that's not the story. ALL THINGS MUST PASS.
Click through for my interview with Tower records infamous founder, Russ Solomon.
Colin Hanks vibrant and thorough documentary tackles the epic rise and fall of Tower Records through the eyes of those that lived it. The cattle call of amazing musicians who are in the doc and all the incredibly captivating folks that worked at Tower Records allow for some really raucous memories. The doc dives into Russ Solomon's life story as it highlights his rise to record store mogul. The power in the film is that you see the massive highs, but more importantly the drastic fall. There are those outrageous stories mixed in with the tragic loss of a beacon of musical lore. Colin hasn't tried to curve the story, but rather gives us the complete look into the history of Tower Records.
I was able to chat with the founder of Tower Records, Russ Solomon.
We started our conversation off by discussing the history behind Russ Solomon's empire.
The film does an incredible job of showcasing the wild and crazy bunch of lifers that worked at Tower Records. It's the wild side of the employees that helped create the crazy mystic behind the stores.
One store stands out amongst all other American stores, San Francisco.
In the film Colin Hanks highlights a cool thing Russ used to do. Anyone who came into his office with a Tie on, would have it cut off. I asked Russ about that wacky tradition and if any big wigs ties standout in his collection.
But overall Russ does hold onto his long time wish to run the largest record store.
Finally, I asked Russ about his musical taste and got a fun answer about who he loved and loves.
The documentary opens today in Austin's Regal Row theater. For more information about where else the doc is playing and to look into the amazing tale of Tower Records please go, here.