As we move past day 50 of social distancing, we continue to see a slew of small businesses in Old East Village finding creative ways to serve their customers. As with past posts in the “OEV Community Connections” series, this is very true of Odyssey Records, a local shop currently operating at 613 Dundas. We spoke to owner and operator Justin Chasty about his delivery endeavours and how it has contributed to the growth of his already loyal customer base.
At the beginning of April, Justin began offering delivery of records, cds, cassettes, dvds and VHS, among the many options found at Odyssey. He confirmed that the new service offering had been quite successful and was helping to expand the shop’s horizons. He continues to deliver in OEV itself frequently but has also found himself at all corners of the city, from Byron to (past) Veterans Memorial Parkway.
“People want to feel connected to physical music and cinema nowadays, streaming can get so boring” Justin told us.
As well, he noted that even before the pandemic’s forceful shift to delivery and pickup based business offerings, people were used to having things delivered to them. This uncovered a local historical parallel to Justin’s delivery method, a business operating in London in the 1970s and 80s called ‘Records on Wheels.’ This was a welcomed discovery and undoubtedly helped Justin feel more deeply connected to the local vinyl community on a different level.
Justin has been working hard making musical recommendations, fulfilling orders, and exploring all ends of the Forest City and the customer response has been great.
“Some people have come out on their porch to say ‘hi’ or to thank me, some have left notes and messages, it has been really awesome.”
In addition, he’s received many comments from customers that Odyssey provides an alternative source for accessing new music and cinema options and this is something that keeps people coming back. However, Justin said that the majority of distribution companies are not operational right now so if something is out of stock, he can have it ordered as soon as he’s able. This is a testament to an immense dedication to providing a platform for the public to access great music and movies, something done at Odyssey Records every day.
“I think people genuinely want to keep small businesses around through this” Justin said and considering the response he’s received, inside OEV and beyond, this is very true.
So if you’re looking to get your hands on some brand new vinyl or perhaps have used LPs you’re looking to part with, get in touch with Justin through Facebook or call the shop at 519-694-3665. Plus, stay tuned for the launch of Odyssey Records’ brand new website where you’ll be to peruse the digital shelves and place orders in just a few clicks!
Check out more from the OEV Community Connections series, right here!