Inflation is ‘excruciating’ for this record store owner

“My Economy” tells the story of the new economic normal through the eyes of the people trying to make it happen, because we know the only numbers that really matter are your economy.

In his store in Jackson, Mississippi, Phillip “DJ Young Venom” Rollins sells a lot of different things.

“Offbeat is an alternative culture store,” Rollins said. “It’s a record store, a comic book store, a designer toy store. And above all, it is an art gallery for young minority artists from the region, so that they can present and sell their work.

During the pandemic, vinyl records became the financial backbone of Rollins’ business. As a DJ himself, Rollins is proud of his selection. “If I don’t give good recommendations, I can’t say I’m a good DJ,” he said. “I know what moves the crowd and what people will like.”

But even before the pandemic, record printers were struggling to keep up with demand; the pandemic has only made things worse. And for Rollins, that meant some of the prices for his most popular records skyrocketed, especially records that were reissued.

“Inflation is hitting my business right now,” he said. “I have to rely on re-releases, and some of those re-releases are just coming up there. Years ago they probably would have been $20, $25. Now we’re looking at, like, $35, $40.

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