I came upon this post I wrote in May of 2011. With Access hip hop closing its doors for good just a week and a half ago, I felt it appropriate to share:
The digital age of music is upon us and it seems that CDs are becoming obsolete, with the demand for vinyl dwindling even more so to just DJs and audiophiles. While many succumb to the speed of buying digitally, there is nothing quite like thumbing through the album insert while experiencing that first listen. No one is immune to the temptation to purchase music digitally:
The Left released Gas Mask in October of 2010 – available on iTunes and at San Diego’s one stop shop for all things hip hop, Access. The album is not a commercial/radio album, so word of mouth and blogs have helped to get the album the recognition it deserves. No matter how one learns of this instant classic, he will undoubtedly want to buy it.
The dilemma: download the album for $9.99 on iTunes or pay a few dollars more, drive twenty minutes (or take a one hour bicycle ride) and enjoy the city during the trip to Pacific Beach. The authentic hip hop culture at Access is refreshing and worth the trip; the staff is humble, helpful and supportive. Had I not traveled to Access, I’d have missed out on Blu’s HER FAVORITE COLO(U)R and MED’s Bang Ya Head 3, both worthwhile expenditures.
Some will stand by and watch physical goods go by the wayside during the digital era, but Access remains the last of a dying breed, seeing the value in the feeling one gets when opening tricky plastic wrappers, peeling off ridiculously sticky stickers and flipping through booklets – guides artists give listeners to allow them to more fully engage albums. When you find yourself hungry for good music and the feeling(s) associated with delving into that music, head to Access Hip Hop.
#SDLovesHipHop exists to carry on a conversation about hip hop music and culture as a catalyst to effect change in individuals’ lives and communities. If any of the artists above, or this article has struck a chord in you, then please leave a comment.