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Sep. 24, 2020
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Take a trip down memory lane at Moe’s

By Pamela A. Keene 
 
Moe Lyons was 16 when he purchased his first vinyl record in 1974. “It was ‘Rufusized’ by Rufus featuring Chaka Khan,” says Lyons, who owns Moe’s Record Shop on the east end of Flowery Branch’s Main Street, near the shores of Lake Lanier. “I still have the original at my house, but we have a couple of them here in the store.”
 
As far back as the late ’70s and early ’80s, Lyons had dreams of opening a record store. By 1985, he was hired as Christmas help at a Record Bar store in his home state of Kentucky. Most recently, he retired at age 60 from Hall County Water Treatment after 18 years. He opened the store in April 2019. “I guess you could say I have a music addiction, but I really like to share music, especially on vinyl,” he said. Lyons has been collecting albums for years and now has more than 6,000 albums at home in addition to the 4,000 to 4,500 in bins at the store. 
 
Located in the former location of Lakeside Market, the store is filled with bin after bin of vinyl, sorted by genre and alphabetized by artist. Ask him about almost any artist who has recorded an album and he can walk right to the proper bin and quickly pull out an assortment. He’s got rock ’n’ roll from early Capricorn record acts to some Beatles, plus jazz, country, hip-hop, blues R&B, alternative and just name it. 
 
Most days, the turntable is spinning. It’s a Technics he’s has since 1989 or 1990. Lyons often posts covers of albums on Facebook that he’s playing that day so that people can drop by and hear their favorites. The store also sells Audio-Technica turntables with USB connections. 
 
“Sometimes people just drop by to talk about music and that’s great,” he said. “I don’t proclaim to be a music expert, but I really do like music. Right now, we just deal in vinyl, but we did have a guy come in a while back and asked if we had any 8-tracks because he had a player in his truck. He left his number after I told him I had a few at home, but he never came back. I wonder if anyone else even has an 8-track player anymore.”
 
Aside from albums, Lyons occasionally purchases CDs, but he said it’s been a long time, thanks to Pandora and Spotify. “I guess the last CD I purchased was Redd Kross.” 
 
Lyons hosts a pre-recorded radio show on WBCX-FM/89.1, the Brenau station, from 8 p.m. to midnight Fridays and Saturdays.
 
These days, his favorite genre is jazz. “My top three musicians are Stanley Clark, Chick Corea and Miles Davis, but I also like rock and alternative bands including Led Zeppelin, Eagles and REM, plus Jason Isbell, Drive By Truckers and The Posies.
 
Albums are priced starting at $2, and go up from there, depending on the album is and its quality. 
“From what I’ve been reading, vinyl is outselling CDs for the first time in nearly 35 years,” he said. “I can’t really explain it, but to me the analog sound quality is better than on CDs. It’s just warmer and more natural. And you just can’t get music any better than this.”
 
Moe’s Record Shop is open Wednesday through Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. The phone number is 678 828-9646. The Facebook page is “Moes Record Shop.”

Posted online 1.30.20
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