You know there are myths about French people being rude? Well, that’s of course a stereotype and a misunderstanding, but when I was in Paris looking for records the other week I actually experienced it. For the second time. Both times it has happened in record shops.
The first time was two years ago when I visited the grumpy old man at Goodies Records. He asked me to leave, or rather threw me out, when I didn’t buy anything.
And three weeks ago it happened again. I wasn’t asked to leave though. This time it was the other way around, since I wasn’t allowed to pay for my records at Crocodisc until I had listened to five records suggested by the record store clerk. When I finally got to pay for Ras Michael’s Rastafari in Dub, The Skatalites’ Rolling Steady and Prince Jammy’s Computerised Dub he slammed each record down on the counter as some kind of statement. A very weird experience.
Luckily all other people I met in record stores, or at other places, were not ruder than in any other country. The owner of Heartbeat Vinyl was extremely helpful and friendly, so was the people at Betinos, Superfly Records, Music Avenue, Le Silence de la Rue and Patate, the latter probably being the most well-known reggae record store in France.