Springfield Business Journal: “Hello, Young Springfield!”


It looks like Dumb Records and the rest of Southtown has yet again made it to the monthly publication The Springfield Business Journal. This time our block is mentioned in an article looking at the topic of ways to attract younger people to visit Springfield. The article points to Southtown as an exception to a lack of activities and businesses drawing youth and keeping them from leaving the city. From the article:

“One exception is the fiercely independent community of small business owners, musicians and skateboarders who have gathered around the once-blighted corner of South Grand Ave. and 11th Street – the neighborhood known as Southtown – which over the past few years has evolved into the home of a record store (Dumb Records) a working recording studio (Southtown Studio) and a skate shop (Boof City), alongside a longer-standing skateboard ramp (Skank Skates) and all-ages concert venue (The Black Sheep Cafe).

This staunchly alternative-minded group of young people is a bright spot in a traditionally bleak local youth culture. These are young, talented, vital people who are choosing to live in Springfield long past the town’s usual sell-by date as a home base. “If I hadn’t started the studio, I wouldn’t still be in Springfield,” said musician and Southtown Studio owner-operator Brandon Carnes (whose band, Looming, recently signed a contract with prestigious California punk rock record label No Sleep), and this attitude is echoed throughout the Southtown community. There is even a current crowdfunding campaign online at http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/projectsouthtown/project-southtown to raise money, in part to help make improvements to the run-down neighborhood.

A passionate, constructive, cultural community like the one that has developed in Southtown can only be a good sign for the city as a whole – especially as it is managing to make Springfield an attractive home for young adults who could easily set up elsewhere. However, it is only a start. This kind of “scene” is almost by definition insular, with self-selecting participants pursuing often highly specialized goals in rarefied, often purposefully ramshackle, environments.”

The rest of the article (written by Scott Faingold) can be found at Barnes & Noble and a few other locations in town. Dumb Records was on the cover of The Springfield Business Journal when it opened up early last year.

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