From Beatles to Beethoven, Elvis to The Eagles, vintage vinyl is stacked high as music of all forms fills up the spacious rooms of the old train depot. In fact, downtown Raymond’s Little Big Store has one of the largest musical collections in the metro-Jackson area.
“It’s starting to climb up the walls,” said owner and manager Betty Strachan.
Little Big Store sells records, tapes, CDs, eight tracks, videos, posters, and anything else music-related.
Strachan said she has no clue how big the collection is. “It must be billions and billions.”
The business used to be located on Countyline Road in Ridgeland when it first opened in 1981. After moving to several places in South Jackson, Little Big Store finally found a permanent home in Raymond.
“I needed a larger building,” said Strachan, who saw that the old train depot was for sale and jumped on the offer.
Now after 33 years, customers come from all over to dig through the massive assortment of records.
“It’s perfect if you want something you can hold and appreciate the cover art,” said Strachan, who added that all their records are guaranteed to play.
The collection continues to grow as people sell their old music to the store. Strachan said she’s willing to make a deal, but most records that are in excellent condition are priced between $8-12. However, Little Big Store also has a half-priced section where customers can peruse through vinyl starting at $1.50.
Strachan, who has a love for all genres of music, but especially blues and rock n’ roll, said her favorite part of running a music store is getting to talk to all kinds of people and discuss their love of music together. “Everyone has something to say,” she said.
Merwin Purser, who has been working at Little Big Store on and off for a little over 30 years now, said he enjoys being around all the old vinyl, as well as talking to collectors about records.
Because Strachan’s other passion, running an alpaca farm, keeps her busy throughout the week, Little Big Store is open Friday, Saturday, and Monday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
With virtually every musical medium besides digital downloads, Little Big Store offers something for any music lover, especially those with an interest in retro classics.
“I love it cause it has tons of stuff!” said MC student Alex Windle.
With vinyl making a comeback among the younger generation, old records are more valuable than ever.
Strachan encourages Mississippi College students to just “come one time” and give the store a chance. With Little Big Store’s music collection being anything but little, she’s confident about making return customers out of visitors.
-Abbie Walker, Editor