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Virgin Records

This photograph shows an early Virgin Records shop at the western end of North Street.
Royal Pavilion and Museums Brighton and Hove

My teenage years

I was 17 when the Virgin store opened; it was most definitely a very formative part of my teenage years.  I think one of the first albums I bought there was The Faust Tapes. The album sold well because of a marketing gimmick by Virgin Records that saw it go on sale for the price of  a single, 59p, I think. Actually I wasted my money because it was rubbish.

Did you go to the Virgin Store? What records did you buy? Share your memories by posting a comment below

Bragging rights

It was a strange and exotic experience to go into the Virgin store. Something almost daring and gave you bragging rights at school. This was especially so if you took your latest purchase in on a Monday, in a Virgin carrier bag. Do you remember that luscious graphic with the two ‘virgins’ entwined?  I went there more for the atmosphere and to listen to new and exciting music, rather than to actually purchase anything.

Pretending to be stoned

I vividly remember listening to Frank Zappa on the headphones, whilst lounging around on the bean bags, pretending to be stoned.  Ah, those were happy days. It was a fantastic shop with a great atmosphere and its own particular smell. Do you remember that? It was sadly missed when the building was demolished. Somehow, the replacement shop always seemed a little bleak and soulless by comparison.


Comments about this page

  • I think you meant ‘hippy’ days, Marc!

    By Stefan Bremner-Morris (01/04/2015)
  • To be fair, there were a couple of decent tracks on the Faust Tapes LP – but most of it was a bit too sonically challenging.  I bought quite a few import albums from Virgin Records – including Can’s Tago Mago; Amon Duul II’s Live in London (99p if I remember correctly) and at least one Gong album. 

    By John Wilkin (16/04/2015)
  • I thought Virgin first started up on the Western Road, just past Castle Street. Anyone else remember that, or was I dreaming?

    By Paul Day (06/09/2015)
  • I remember this shop with very happy memories. I loved going into Virgin and browsing through the racks and listening to LPs whilst lounging on the bean bags. I first heard ‘Tubular Bells’ through the headphones and bought it on the spot as I thought it was brilliant. I vividly remember the musty smell and also the smell of Afghan coats and patchouli oil. It was the shop where all the ‘hippy’ types went to buy their records and it was a sad moment when it went.

    By Paul Clarkson (08/09/2015)

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