Love Garden Sounds: One of the Best Record Stores for Vinyl Lovers

A stack of records

Been a while since you’ve visited vinyl record stores? Even if you’re a digital music devotee, there’s some magical about stepping inside vinyl record stores. It’s like a time machine…

In the last six months, I’ve moved into a beautiful walk-up apartment on the north side of Kansas City, Mo. Since moving here, I’ve got to rekindle my love affair with vinyl, DIY, and all things thrifty because (1) I live alone, which means I can get crafty where ever, and whenever, I please;  and (2) my dear dad finally fixed his (now my) 1969 Garrard record player. This second fact pleases me so much because I am a vinyl lover. And now, since my vintage record player is in working condition, I have started collecting records like crazy from various  vinyl record stores.

Luckily, Kansas City and its surrounding cities have some pretty rad record stores with great selections that local vinyl addicts can salivate over. One such record store is Love Garden Sounds in Lawrence, Kan., a quirky, college town that I had the pleasure of living in for eight years. Lawrence is about 40 minutes away from KC, so visiting is easy.

Love Garden Sounds is located on Massachusetts Street in the city’s eclectic downtown district. The record store opened in 1990 and is still going strong. Just this last year, the store celebrated its 24th anniversary with Woods, and a handful of amazing local artists.

Kelly Corcoran currently owns the store (Corcoran bought it in 2004), but started shopping there in 1994. According to an article in Pitch, Corcoran has loved watching how the store has evolved over the years.

Since the store moved to its new, first-floor location in 2009 (it used to be in a second-floor, walk-up space, on the same street), the store started to carry more vinyl. Currently, the store buys and sells records, CDs, tapes, and equipment.

While Love Garden Sounds only has one location, Corcoran says the store sells a good amount of merch that the owner has seen people wear around the country. Now, that’s some love!

Since getting my trusty record player up-and-running again, I’ve purchased some pretty stellar, previously loved titles from the store:

Record player and records

  • “Al Green’s Greatest Hits, volume 2,” Al Green $8
  • “She’s So Unusual,” Cyndi Lauper, $4
  • “Rainbow Bridge,” Jimi Hendrix $5
  • “The Best of Bill Withers,” Bill Withers, $6
  • “Rides Again,” James Gang, $4

A record

  • “Somewhere in Time,” Iron Maiden $20 (valuable record)

Various record fronts

  • “Music to be Murdered by,” Alfred Hitchcock $2-6
  • “No Dice,” Badfinger $18 (valuable record)
  • “Some Girls,” the Rolling Stones $5

Look at those prices!

This is by no means a comprehensive list of what I’ve scored from this awesome shop, but it pretty much encapsulates my musical influences.

I’m headed to Lawrence again this weekend, and you can be sure that this vinyl lover will hit up the Garden.

Related on EcoSalon

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Top image: Thomas, other images: Abbie Stutzer

Abbie Stutzer

Writer, editor, and owner of Ginchy!, a freelance writing and editing company, and home funeral hub. Adores smart sex ed, sustainable ag, spooky history, women's health, feminism, horror, wine, and sci-fi.