By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
What many music fans weren't expecting was the high level of production the venue would bring with it. Every one of the venue's seats offers a great vantage point, and the sound system can reach high volume with impeccable clarity.
Oh, and to appease the local music scene, the adjoining 400 capacity Cambridge Room hosts the area's top acts with production value just as high as the main room.
Best Records Store
In the bathroom at the back of Good Records — just past the listening stations, past the racks, shelves and display cases filled with CDs, records, seven-inches, magazines and posters, and past the green, AstroTurf-covered stage used for in-store performances by national and area acts — a stack of awards and articles from local publications stand out from among the paper towels, cleaning supplies and a signed poster promoting the film The Devil and Daniel Johnston. Years back, someone hung a few of the awards the store had accumulated over the years on the wall of the Lower Greenville Avenue record shop's bathroom. The rest, well, they're just collecting dust.
Still, those dusty awards tell a familiar story that's been unfolding since the shop opened (originally, in Deep Ellum) in 2000: Dallas loves Good Records. Really: Even if the far-flung record selection weren't half as good as it is, even if the store didn't host weekly film screenings on "Music Movie Mondays" and even if the store didn't throw its annual and incredibly popular Record Store Day celebration, the knowledgeable and friendly staff would alone make this shop worth visiting.
Best Talent Buyer
The seven years that Mike Schoder has owned the Granada Theater have provided him ample time to find out what works and what doesn't.
His conclusion of late? Quality over quantity. Over the last few years, the theater has scaled back on the number of performances it hosts each week in order to focus on the best acts coming through town. As a result, talent buyer Ryan Henry has been able to cherry-pick more big acts like Panda Bear, Rusko, The Raveonettes and Deerhunter to perform on the Granada stage over the last year. And thanks to the theater's widely known hospitality, getting bands to return is that much easier.
Gorilla Vs. Bear
Not content to simply be one of the most influential music blogs on the web and the launchpad for countless local bands, the Polaroid fetishists at Gorilla Vs. Bear inaugurated their Gorilla vs. Bear Festival this past summer. The fest's diverse lineup brought in Shabazz Palaces, Grimes, Juliana Barwick and White Denim. The fest also marked Dallas locals Preteen Zenith's mesmerizing live debut.
The dude just makes Dallas look cool.