Every city has, or had, one – an independent music store which influenced local music. It was the place you went when you cared about depth of range and about the shopping experience. It was the place you went looking for product because it existed and not because some suit in a far office decreed it was worth of shelf space. It was the space you went because of the community which shopped there, the flyers at the door, the notices on the wall but most of all because of the range.

Clone music stores, with less range, poorer service and no community connect are replacing these stores. Aided and abetted by music downloads from places like Apple’s iTunes store.

The latest independent music store to fall is Let It Be Records in Minneapolis. This store from Pulse tells it like it is.

Not much more to say really other than to observe that whereas we have people who will protest to have a forest or a building preserved for future generations, we are letting these bearers of culture and community be shuttered without a second thought.

Independent anything, music stores, book shops, newsagents, butchers, bakers, greengrocers, dry cleaners, pharmacies – they ought to be protected as if they are a rainforest. We will care when it is too late I suspect.

I’ve been to Let It Be Records. The world is lesser for its passing.

Here in Melbourne our own once iconic Gaslight Records is on the critical list.