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Barrie Retro Spots


“We’ve got the right to choose it… ain’t no way we’ll lose it…we’re not gonna take it anymore”

Ah the melodious refrain of the age old battle between parents and kids. Fights over musical taste. (spoiler alert I am the Dad now, who in another time and place, was the self proclaimed rock and roll hero, defending truth, justice and the right to party, against the clearly Neanderthal insufficiency of my parent’s musical sensibilities.)

But I didn’t come here to grind some heavy metal axe with my kids, I came to share the miracle of miracles, that fleeting accident of family life; that mysterious apparition out of the cultural ether that like the Bhudda instantly disappears the moment it is identified as being present….DAD AND THE KIDS AGREEING ON A MUSICAL IDEA!!

The idea? Kids in 2019 were the driving force behind the resurgence in “old school” formats. For the first time since your ability to download, Atunes, Btunes, Itunes…whatever!!…you guys bought more record albums, CD’s and music of various formats, then you ever have in the past. Somehow your sense of organic meets with my sense of material need and voila! An alliance is formed… Don’t worry I won’t tell your friends.

We both dig records and Cd’s and in Barrie…get ready for the segue…the best way for us to indulge our guilty pleasure is at BJ’s CLASSIC COLLECTABLES, RECORDS AND NOSTALGIA. Located at 13 Clapperton St. in downtown Barrie, BJ’s is an iconic reminder of pop culture, it’s history and its importance in establishing a voice for the musical interests, lifestyle and politics of youth culture…..and the parties….


Owner Bill Loiselle, having spent forty years in the Barrie music business, the last 15 as owner of BJ’s, offers you over 50, 000 pieces of memorabilia to choose from. From posters to comic books to memento’s, cd’s and his primary interest, record albums and 45’s ( not the guns) there is something there for everyone who has an interest in musical history and would like to know more about a time when the kids made the musical choices instead of corporate interests making choices for them….

Record albums are different from song downloads. They have their own personality, they are an artform in a way that a laptop can never be. They tell you stories about the people who make them. They tell you stories about the people who own them. They tell you, your story. Who you are and where you came from.

In a world of increasing impermanence and ever-changing values, something real, something tangible, memories that can’t be deleted at the touch of a button, become an essential component of a healthy, “between the ears” lifestyle.


Ok, ok, I know I’ve wandered away from the light hearted beginning of this article, but give me a break, I told you I was a Dad and you should have known that it was only a matter of time before I got on my, “squawk box” and gave you a sermon.

Oh and btw, if you need to purchase the necessary stereo equipment to play your albums, Bill and the staff at BJ’s will only be too happy to accommodate you, Call for an appointment ( 705-737-3031) and view their private stash. “Barrie Uncovered” uncovers again!

Don’t trust anyone over 30 (except for me). Keep it real and stay groovy.
Till the next time, your stoner from a different owner 😊

Written by Guest Writer:  Papa Squawk | Images by: Stephen Elliot

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