Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Stan's Record Shop, Per Ron H.

I first heard about Stan's Record Shop on KAAY. When I wanted to purchase an oldie, I would write to Stan's and ask them to send the records C.O.D. Stan's never let me down; I would have the records I desired in about ten days.

When I was in Vietnam, I wrote to my parents and asked them to telephone Stan's to order two 45's for me. Stan's didn't wait for my parents to send the money. The records were mailed directly to me in Vietnam about ten days after I wrote the letter to my parents.  I'll never forget that act of kindness.

Gary Wegner and I were both drafted on the same day; consequently, we were both released about the same time in September, 1968. We decided it would be fun to visit our friend who was stationed at the air force base in Alexandria, LA. Our friend had requested a leave, so we asked him to checkout and drive to New Orleans with us. Gary asked me if I would like to make a little detour to Stan's Record Shop on the way home. He could tell by the smile on my face what my answer would be.

When we arrived at Stan's the next day, I looked all over for the large stock of oldies which were supposed to be there. "Apache 65," for example, was a record I wanted to buy. The shelves were full of only the latest records, so I was disappointed. Something shiny on the wall caught my attention. It was the gold record for "I'm leaving It up to You" by Dale and Grace. It was on the Montel label which did not belong to Stan. That is the only gold record I have ever seen. My friend Ronnie Allen notified me he was doing a radio interview with Dale and Grace, so I asked him to find out the story behind the gold record. They told him they didn't remember it being there.

Just before we left Stan's, I spotted drawers below the shelves. Eureka! That is where all of the older records were stored. We had planned to stay the night in Little Rock, and it was getting late.   We had to hit the road if we were going to make it to Little Rock before dark.  I only took a few minutes to browse those drawers, but I still spent a wad of money before we departed.

We listened to WNOE all of the way to Little Rock; then we tuned to KAAY. The next day we listened to KAAY for about the first 300 miles during the last day of our trip back to Chicago. Wow, what a signal! It was a trip to remember.

Stan's Record Shop! There will never be another place like it.

Ron Henselman W9FT

(A further note per Ron-)

I forgot to comment about a ham radio conversation I had. I was in Northwestern, Wisconsin, and I was playing with my ham radio. It was the mid-ninties, and I contacted a gentleman named Ship in Shreveport. When I mentioned Stan's, Ship informed me Stan and he had been friends for many years. Ship said he was sorry to inform me Stan's was no longer there due to the poor economy of the area at that time.


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