Though there's no hard-and-fast demolition date for the Sunset Strip building that housed the most famous Tower Records, its days are likely numbered, as a developer has been trying to get a huge retail project built on the site for years now and West Hollywood has declined to landmark the building. Tower hasn't occupied the space since 2006 (when the company went bankrupt and the store closed), but this footage of an average day in 1971 at Tower Records, from Dangerous Minds (via LAObserved) brings us all the way back to its salad days (in 1974, Guinness named it "largest record store in the world"). Shot by Sacramento City College professor Darrell Forney, this video is a time capsule that takes viewers back to the days when LPs were king, they cost about $3, and everyone was allowed to smoke inside.
There's also this perfectly preserved Tower Records flashback, an ad for the store starring none other than John Lennon, and reportedly filmed during a 1974 in-studio appearance at KHJ. In the promo, he tells listeners that Tower is the "largest record store in the known world" and promises they'll find "more rock LPs than you ever thought existed." While Lennon's announcement plays, a montage of old ads for the store (as well as shots from the previous video) streams across the screen. Thanks to these, we can remember Tower Records in its yellow and red prime instead of as the weird, out-of-place, white building it is today.
· FANTASTIC FOOTAGE DOCUMENTING THE TOWER RECORDS SHOPPING EXPERIENCE OF 1971 [Dangerous Minds]
· John Lennon for Tower Records on the strip (video) [LAO]
· Flagship Tower Records On The Strip Won't Be Landmarked [Curbed LA]