In the era of streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music, and YouTube Music, you might be surprised to hear that there are record stores here in Philadelphia that are not only alive — but thriving! From No Lib to South Street, you can find unique record shops serving the audiophile communities in Philly.

Why buy records? By buying a record you are directly supporting the artist as well as the local record store. With Spotify and other streaming platforms paying $.004 per stream, streaming their music is now one of the worst ways to support your favorite artists.

Like the bookworm says that a novel read on a Kindle is different from holding a hardcover, many music enthusiasts will say that playing a record is different than listening to the car radio. It’s not just about the music. It’s about the experience

These are the best Philly record stores where all are welcome to come crate dig and build your record collection, all while supporting small businesses that share the belief that music is more than background noise for Sunday chores.

Repo Records

South Street, Queen Village

One of South Philly’s best record stores was born in Wayne to proud father Dan Matherson in 1986. Its name is inspired by the 1984 film Repo Man. “​​I really liked the soundtrack and the movie itself,” states Matherson. “I thought, ‘hey, why not?’” By the end of the decade, little Repo Records grew up and moved out to Brynn Mawr to meet the demand of the emerging punk scene selling indie records and LPs. The store — and stock — grew, and Repo Records landed in the big city in the late 90s. Ever since, Repo Records made a home for itself on the ironically named Center City hotspot South Street selling vinyl, cassettes, and CDs alongside several storefronts with the same goal. 

During the decade of flannels and grunge, several stores served as competition for Repo Records on the same happening street, staying open late into the night to catch the young and rowdy crowds letting out of a Theatre of Living Arts show. Unlike the others, Repo Records is still nestled in the hustle and bustle of South Street. Today, you can find all genres in the store, ranging from punk — the genre closest to owner Dan Matherson’s heart — to hip-hop and classic rock. But again, it’s not just about the music. Repo Records continues to host album signings and live performances, especially in celebration of Record Store Day. Some of the past acts that have stopped by include Alex G, Snailmail, Indigo de Souza, Japanese Breakfast, Lucy Dacus, and Anthony Green of Circa Survive. Tierra Whack even filmed her preview for Apple Music’s “Up Next” series in the store. 

Main Street Music


The appropriately named Main Street Music is the meeting place for the music lovers of Manayunk. Similarly, The independently-owned music store in this cozy, little neighborhood not only sells vinyl, CDs, and DVDs; it serves as a hub for those who are seeking nostalgia to connect with others who share the passion for the days before digital music. 

The library is loaded with indie, folk, and alternative, but you can find just about any genre on the shelves, making it one of Philadlphias best shops to dig for records and find that next hidden gem vinyl — just don’t too many expect new releases.

In an interview with Philly’s own 6abc, Owner Pat Feeney stated that he believes that the customers who keep coming back for “the love of the hunt” keep Main Street Music in business. There is something satisfying about thumbing through the bins and finally finding a record you’ve been looking for. Customers are willing to make the trip over the Schuylkill river from Germantown to Manayunk just to connect with the physical disc in their hands. Not to mention, album artwork makes for some pretty cool wall decor.

Like Repo Records, Main Street Music has hosted live performances worth getting excited about for Record Store Day, such as Caroline Rose, Dawes, Kopecky, and Anthony D’Amato.

Creep Records

Northern Liberties

What the hell am I doing here? Getting the latest releases, obviously! While it’s unclear if it’s inspired by the iconic Radiohead song “Creep,” it’s impossible not to think of the tune upon learning the name of this Northern Liberties record store. Before signing artists such as Dead Guy, Buglite, and The Ergs, Creep Records was just a dream belonging to a kid in suburban West Chester. Today, Creep Records is a 3-in-1 record store, record label, and venue for the local Philly music scene. 

And you won’t just find the newest albums at the Hancock Street location. It doesn’t matter what kind of sound you’re in love with. An underground Philly punk band? Coffee shop acoustic act? World-renowned pop singer? You can support your favorite artist by snagging some artist merchandise — from t-shirts and jackets to beanies and backpacks.

Displayed on the highest shelves of the store, you will find a large “glass art” and “water pipe” selection accompanied by a variety of incense – which only makes us think the people behind Creep Records shop are committed to the optimal vinyl experience.

Digital Underground

Queen Village

When you look around the interior of this Queen Village record shop, you almost forget the metal bars on the door are a safety feature and not part of the dark aesthetic. Unsurprisingly, the music library matches the mysterious name of Digital Underground. If you’re looking for goth, industrial, or metal, you’ve come to the right place. 

In contrast to the slightly frightening steampunk art decorating the exterior, the people inside are friendly. Forget the stereotypes about people you find in record stores. There’s no fear of judgment here! Buyers and sellers alike are proud anti-snobs. Digital Underground doubles as a hub for those who indulge in tabletop games. Trade your Magic: the Gathering cards and grab miniatures for your ongoing Dungeons & Dragons campaign.

Philadelphia Record Exchange


You’ll recognize the old-timey font and brick storefront of this Fishtown record shop from anywhere — and once you step inside, it’s another world. There is something so charming about the disorderly wall-to-wall rows of used records, fading framed posters, and LED string lights decorating the interior. The Philadelphia Record Exchange is loved by locals — the reasonable prices being a major draw, especially if you’re just starting to build a record collection and you’re looking to buy a lot for a little. My advice for savvy shoppers is to check out their $1 crate. Any less, and it’d be free! 

What truly sets this one apart from the rest is the nature of the exchange, but that means the library is always changing. As a general rule, it’s unlikely you’ll see any new releases stocked at a used record store. Some customers are thrilled to leave with a few popular jazz records. Others leave wishing the selection was a bit more niche, but the library is always changing. Come back a month later and the stock will be totally different. One thing ALL customers can agree on is making sure you’re not in a rush when stopping by. There’s a LOT to leaf through.