Happy birthday Alfred Hitchcock (1899)!
Starting in 1976, I worked at a record store. I went from store to store, following my manager, usually. It never occurred to me to look for work in any other record store, actually. Having the job, I had access to other jobs within that company. I sometimes drove the truck that delivered the records, so I got to see all of the stores in the chain (30 in all), to see which ones had punks; hippies; straights!
It didn’t take long until I landed a gig at the record distributor that owned the Licorice Pizza chain, Superior Music, Glendale, CA. I worked with many neat people and some folks I can’t even be arsed to name, real creeps. My friends: Steven Wolloch! Steve “Mott” Hernandez! Dana Madore! (Of Moby Disc fame).
At Superior Music, there was a real problem with drugs – there simply wasn’t enough around to keep the whole building fueled and burning! I remember hearing crap like “He’s going on a special assignment for a few weeks” = “He’s going into rehab for cocaine addiction” or thereabouts. Guys high up in the company! Hey, I don’t do (or condone) any of that crap – I remember guys bragging about how their friends wouldn’t let me croak if they ‘did too much’ – they wouldn’t be your friends otherwise! Really, it probably meant that they didn’t want to have to explain a dead body in their house to the cops – who were probably more interested in busting them for having drugs!
I first met Tony Harrington about 1977 or so; he came into the Licorice Pizza store I worked at in Bellflower, to put a display for whichever LP he was releasing first. Took a few years, but he eventually offered me a job. Which I took, as the record distributor / importer I was working at was “shonky”, to paraphrase Norman Gunston.
Ever buy an LP with a red / white sticker on it that said “United States Sales & Marketing”? That was Tony & I. I got the catalogues and decided what to import, to sell to the Americans. We tended to shy away from rock music, as there seemed to be many people doing that. So, we stuck to easy listening music, new age music (which wasn’t call that yet), soundtracks…
The run with Tony was from approx. 1981 to 1987; I had a wife, a newer car; I got to travel quite a bit. It was a great time in my life! But – as we all know – when stuff goes well, there will always be some skunk waiting to trip you, just to see how far you will fall. Which did happen. I don’t even want to name the guys who I worked with who put Tony under; they never appreciated his kindness (he gave them all jobs!) or intelligence. You creeps know who you are – the scumbags who stole client lists, or product (which I watched you sell to Platterpuss in Santa Monica). “You know who you are!” You are not part of the happiness I have been describing.
Thank you, Tony Harrington!