With big chain stores, like Best Buy, taking up a large part of the market, combined with the rising popularity of music downloads, independently owned music stores are having to close their doors. You may think, why does it matter where I buy my music from? The money is going back to the artist one way or the other. Which is true; it doesn't matter, but music stores offer a unique experience. There's the human connection, for one, as well as the ability to discover local or less-mainstream music. Besides, there's just something about strolling through the racks and discovering a hidden gem. I think this quote says it best:
"The idea of - 'The journey is the destination.' - is put into action by browsing in an indie record store. Besides, a human being is a much better guide than a 'More Like This' link on the internet." - Patton Oswalt
When I lived in Flagstaff, the store I most frequented was Gopher Sounds. Here in the Valley of the Sun, we go to Tracks in Wax and Zia Record Exchange. However, I will admit (guiltily) that, more often than not, I find myself going online and clicking "Purchase" at Amazon for the latest release. It's easier to shop online, but truly, I love spending an hour or two browsing around in a record store. Anytime my husband and I travel, we always end up in a record store too. Even when we were in London and Copenhagen, we made sure to stop into a couple of record shops.
So get out this weekend and get to a music store! Here is an excellent article which discusses the situation in greater detail. You can also visit the Record Store Day website to see other quotes from musicians and entertainers about this topic. For fun, why not leave me a comment and let me know what was the last CD you purchased and how did you buy it? (Best Buy, I-Tunes, Amazon.com, etc.)