Music’s Not Dead is not just a record shop. It is a mission statement that owner Del Querns lives by. Del was a long-time employee of Powerplay, a chain of record shops on the south coast. The owners had decided to close the business down, saying that record retailing was dead. Del was not convinced and with fellow ex Powerplay employee Rich decided to start their own shop, choosing the name as an act of defiance.
People told them it was crazy to open a shop in Bexhill. There is a saying about the town: “People retire to Bexhill to live out their last days, and then forget what they went there for.” Accordingly, it is home to the highest percentage of people over the age of 100 anywhere in the UK. The biggest danger when walking from the station to the record shop is that of being run over by one of the numerous mobility scooters driving around the town. Del believed that they could offer something for the young people of the town. Although the shop is small, it is beautiful and offers chairs, magazines and freshly brewed coffee.
The shop puts on gigs and the walls are decorated with posters of artists they have promoted. One poster they were not thrilled about was put up by a man who asked Del if he had any Blutack. “Sorry we don’t”, Del replied, “but next door sell it”. “It’s OK” said the man, “I will cope”. It was only a few weeks after the event had taken place that Del discovered the World’s Meanest Poster Man had stuck the poster up using chewing gum.
The greatest coup for Music’s Not Dead was getting local lads and record shop supporters Keane to play in the shop, an event which prompted one fan to fly in from Canada specifically to see the band.
In 2018 it looked like music was dead in Bexhill as the shop closed. The outpouring of sadness from music fans of the town made Del have a re-think and after a couple of months he decided to go solo and opened in one of the UK’s most iconic building, the De La Warr Pavilion.
Now with the help of Ollie the shop stocks a wide range of vinyl new and old. Overlooking the sea, the shop is open 7 Days a week on the 1st floor of the modernist building. Since opening many artists have performed In the store Including Lucy Rose, William The Conqueror, Yak, Trevor Moss & Hannah-Lou and Tom Williams
Del is proving that music is very much alive in this seaside town.
I asked Del what Proper releases he was enjoying?
Erland Cooper – Sule Skerry
I’ve been a fan of Erland’s music since Erland & The Carnival and last years ‘Solan Goose’ album was never very far from the record player.
This one takes it up another level it’s one of the most beautiful records released this year, and I’ve pretty much listened to it every day since it was released staring out at the sea from our shop in the De La Warr Pavilion, don’t get me wrong this record sounds great anywhere, but if you can listen and stare at the sea, i’d thoroughly recommend it.
Psychedelic Porn Crumpets – And Now For the Watchamacallit
Not quite sure what they’re putting in the water down in Australia at the moment, but every other week there seems to be another great record coming out of Perth, there’s a bit of King gizzard, a bit of Tame Impala but still manages to sound like themselves, it’s a big dumb psych rock record and all the better for it.
If you would like to be Proper’s Featured Store, contact Graham Jones.
Music’s Not Dead
Tel: 01424 229123
Vinyl, CD, Pre-owned, Books, In-stores, T-Shirts
Monday – Sunday: 10am – 5:30pm
Music’s Not Dead
The De La Warr Pavillion