The continuing destruction of the independent record store has claimed another. Cactus Records, one of the oldest and most well-respected local music stores in Houston is closing its doors as of March 31.
The tremendous support they gave the music community is their legacy and they are an important part of the tapestry of Houston music.
Quinn Bishop, the long-time general manager (and a musician himself), summed up the closing:
During my almost twenty years as a Cactus employee I have seen many changes. We rebuilt Cactus from a small, unprofitable retail chain in the mid-1980’s to one of the best single storefront music retailers in the country during the 1990’s. We have endured many hardships, including the disastrous flooding of our store during Tropical Storm Allison, a bitter three-month battle over our historic sign and, most recently, the devastating effects of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita on the local economy.
All of this in addition to high list prices, the decline of the CD, file sharing, downloading, CD burning, predatory pricing from big-box retailers, and the decline of video rental.We adapted, continually making adjustments to offset the downgrade in sales including trimming payroll, cutting positions and reducing inventory while embracing new products and practices.
We are proud to have overcome the adversity of our industry, establishing Cactus as a Houston landmark over the last 30 years.
Bottom line: this sucks. RIP Cactus. 🙁
Thanks to all who have emailed about this. There are a couple links to look at. First, I was one of many quoted in the Racket section of the Houston Press. John Nova Lomax is doing two parts to accommodate all the comments about Cactus.
Also, there is a Handstamp blog entry about it on Chron.com with tons of comments.