The doors on Smoky’s Record Shop on Wells Street have been closed for more than a decade.
Now, his last surviving family member has decided it’s time to sell the building and the contents.
That job falls to Bob Sluyter, a record dealer and family friend.
“I knew him from years ago from shopping here,” Sluyter begins.
“I was looking for some Jerry Lee Lewis records and I heard a noise from the back room. Smoky came out and started telling me all about his experiences with meeting Jerry Lee and other country stars.
“He was quite a character and he always had a good story about what was going on with those artists. Yeah, it wasn’t like going to the mall. You got a chance to hear, you know, some really good stories.”
Smoky was born Charles L. Montgomery. He ran his store for the better part of five decades.
He died in 2006. At that time, his family didn’t want to run the store but they didn’t want to sell it, either.
The sale will likely take a unique buyer.
While vinyl has made a tremendous comeback since 2006, most buyers are shopping for LPs, containing full albums of roughly a dozen songs. They’re not as interested in 45’s, which usually have one song per side.
“There’s way over 20,000 45’s upstairs and a lot more down here,” says Sluyter.
“I never seen anything like it. All my years and I’ve been over 25 years doing records. I’ve seen warehouses of modern companies who sell records. That’s their business and they don’t have nearly the amount of stuff that he did.”
Sluyter says the building and the contents can be sold separately.
You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org
The store is not open to the public.