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Dublin: 13 °C Tuesday 10 December, 2019
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Tower Records celebrates 20 years of bringing music to Dublin

The store was originally opened as part of the Tower Records chain, but is now independent.

DUBLIN RECORD STORE Tower Records is celebrating 20 years in action today, proving that despite the tough times of late for the music industry, Irish people still love buying records.

“We’re glad to have made it to 20,” said assistant manager Conor Cullen. “It’s a pretty big thing for us… to go on for 20 years is unbelievable.”

He said that there is “still a big call for vinyl records”, which are after coming back in a big way, and this is reflected in the space given to vinyl in the store.

Tower is one of a number of long-running record stores in the capital, including Spindizzy, Celtic Note and Sound Cellar.

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Tower records pictured in 1999. Pic: Graham Hughes/Photocall Ireland

Twenty years ago, it was set up on Wicklow St as part of the Tower Records chain, which originated in Sacramento, California.

After the Tower chain went into liquidation, the Irish store was bought by Record & Discs Ltd. The store has undergone a number of changes since then, including the expansion of the DVD section and the opening of the Sound Bites café.

Cullen said that since the closure of the HMV chain – which is about to reopen in Dublin – some of HMV’s customers have begun shopping at Tower. “We are getting people in saying they never knew we were here and we existed,” said Cullen.

However, the store has a loyal and large fanbase, and the store changes reflect the changing tastes of these music enthusiasts.

Fans have been tweeting their support for the store today:

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To mark the day, Phantom FM is broadcasting live from Tower, while tonight will see a birthday bash taking place in the next-door venue Madison.

Some of the regular customers are specially invited to the event, as “it’s the customers that make it” said Cullen.

Although there is no doubt that the record industry has taken quite a hit in recent years, Tower staff remain positive.

“Downloading isn’t as big a problem to music as people would lead you to believe,” said Cullen. “If you sell the right stuff, people still want to buy it.”

Read: HMV: What does its receivership mean for Irish music and businesses?>

Read: It’s back! HMV to reopen four stores in two weeks>

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