Embarrassingly, my first exposure to the Replacements probably came via the (almost memorable) teen movie of the same name.
Not that I took any real knowledge of the Replacements’ music away from that experience—but it let me know that they were out there. And, that their music was meaningful enough for someone to name a pretty earnest movie after.
I started working at point Judith Country Club in Narragansett, RI as a dishwasher on my 14th birthday (I really wanted a job). As I got my first taste of spending money, my record collection grew to an unreasonable size. I would work there for something like 7 summers and each summer my bedroom would come to more closely resemble a miniature city made of CD towers.
And to pass the time in the relative isolation of Narragansett, RI, I would drive around the neighboring towns for hours, swapping CDs in and out, the car’s stereo cranked to 11. Typically, these trips resulted in a stopover at a record store.
Narragansett, had (for that time, a very respectable) 4 locations to buy music:
Looney Tunes II, a hole in the wall with the best possible curated inventory. Known for blaring Reggae and World Music. Open to this day.
One of the many precursors to FYE, located in the Wakefield (Strawberry’s?). An infrequent last stop to find a rarity.
Sound Waves, a frequent stopover while making runs to Stop and Shop.
Another location in in the Narragansett Pier—the small, overpriced shop geared towards tourists.
Sound waves never had the charm of Looney Tunes (it had the atmosphere of a Hollywood video), but it did a nice job of showcasing staff favorites. The Replacements’ “All for Nothing” was always on proud display. I would notice it every time.
After countless attempts, good ol’ fashioned product placement finally got me one rainy afternoon. I broke down and bought the album without ever hearing a note of the Mats’ music.
At checkout, the dude at the counter nodded approvingly. “GREAT album.”
I too nodded as if I was in the know.
He was right.
For the rest of that summer, the only CDs being swapped in and out were disc 1 and disc 2 of “All for Nothing.”
There’s a reason why someone bothered to name a movie after it.
Comments are closed.