Haffa’s Records will close its doors this September after 42 years of serving Athens’ music lovers.
Students can stop by the shop, 15 W. Union St., and make their final selections upon returning to campus.
Haffa’s is owned by self-described “music nerds” and longtime Athens residents Eric Gunn and Andrew Lampela.
“Record stores were always an important place to me, and I’ve been an avid music collector since I was in high school,” said Gunn. “It wasn’t a planned out career path — it just happened.”
The duo agreed that the recent resurgence in vinyl helped them stay open longer than they could have otherwise, but it didn’t make up for the general decline in business. Lampela emphasized the importance of changing with the times, and Gunn agreed.
“The realities of the music industry are like many industries — they’re changing,” said Gunn, “The vast majority of people stream music.”
The store opened in 1975 in the basement of the building where it still stands. Both Gunn and Lampela recalled shopping at Haffa’s in their youth.
“I met some of my best friends in the store,” said Lampela. “It’s been a huge part of my life.”
Gunn said there’s nothing to be sad about in the long-term, however, saying, “Some things you just can’t fight.”
“Obviously, neither one of us wanted to see the store close,” said Gunn, “But when all is said and done, I think we’ll be proud of the legacy that Haffa’s Records left.”