Rifftides reader Greg Curtis is on a study sabbatical in Paris. Wishing to stimulate envy—and succeeding—he sent an illustrated message about two used record stores in the 5th arrondissement, near his apartment. One, La Dame Blanche, specializes in classical recordings. The name of the other, Crocojazz, is self-explanatory. They are across from one another on the rue de la Montagne-Ste-Geneviève.
Mr. Curtis writes about Crocojazz:
This store featured a complete run of 33 1/3 anthologies of rare blues and jazz tunes from 78s, with R. Crumb art on the cover. VERY tempting but I didn’t buy. Maybe I’ll go back and see if the owner can ship to the states and what that would cost.
All dedicated collectors agonize over such decisions, as did Harvey Pekar. The drawing taped on Crocojazz’s window is a panel from American Splendor: The Life and Times of Harvey Pekar by the late jazz critic, philosopher and ironic humorist. Pekar was portrayed by Paul Giamatti in an award-winning film, also titled American Splendor. See this series of Rifftides posts about Pekar at the time of his death in 2010.
Greg Curtis’s most recent book, worth collecting, is The Cave Painters: Probing the Mysteries of the World’s First Artists. His previous one, Disarmed, was about the Venus de Milo.