Downtown Sarasota's rich array of shops finally includes a haven for music lovers. Located in the Fulton Building strip mall on the west side of Washington Boulevard, around the corner from Towles Court, you'll find Vatican City Vinyl Records. "The Unholy Home of Rock 'N Roll Records," reads the white lettering on the exterior of the shop window. Inside, you'll find Katelyn Booth and her fiancé Christian Downing, the shop's friendly and highly knowledgeable owners, surrounded by a panoply of vinyl.
"From 45s, 33 ½, to even 78s, our mission is to have it all," Katelyn says. "Used vinyl
however is only the beginning; we are also going to be carrying new releases starting by the end of this month. In regards to our used selection we wish to cater to all, from the die-hard collector to the person that wishes to enjoy listening to their music through the vinyl medium."
The couple adds that although they may call themselves “The Unholy Home of Rock ‘N Roll Records,” their intention is to also grow the shop's jazz, blues, country, classical, hip-hop, and electronic inventory. Besides vinyl, Vatican City also carries CDs, concert booklets, posters, turntables, speakers, receivers, stickers, patches, vinyl storage boxes, price guides and recycled vinyl goods.
Talking to Christian and Katelyn this afternoon, it was obvious their passion for music also includes the homegrown music scene. "We want to be the hub for local music in Sarasota and surrounding areas since I do not currently know of one," Katelyn says. "We encourage musicians of any genre to bring their music in for little to no consigning fee. It doesn’t matter the medium, Christian and I accept it all. We hope to have an entire table dedicated to local music."
Another idea Katelyn and Christian are throwing around is to have artists bring in artwork
to adorn the shop's still mostly bare walls. "We would like to offer the same deal to artists as the musicians: little to no cosigning for wall space," she says.
Vatican City Vinyl Records, which also buys records and will do trade for store credit, throwing a grand opening bash Nov. 30. Stay tuned for details. Missed my Ticket cover story "Back to vinyl"? Check it out.
Vatican City Vinyl Records
404 S. Washington Blvd., Sarasota; 592-7376 or 726-6667; facebook.com/VCVRecords. Hours: Mon.–Thurs: 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; Fri-Sat: 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sun: Noon- 6 p.m.