It is with great sadness that we have to report that George Ginn, who ran The Record Album for 56 years until 2018, passed away on June 11 at the Royal Sussex County Hospital following a fall at the Bramble Cottage Residential Care Home in Patcham. He was 93 and very well known and admired not just in Brighton but in the wider film and theatre music and record collecting world.
Until his retirement in 2018 aged 88, George was Brighton’s longest established record dealer. With an unrivalled knowledge of film soundtracks and original theatre musical cast recordings, George dealt only in vinyl and observed the music industry’s peaks and troughs, trends and curios from the early 1960s and established The Record Album as one of Brighton’s much loved cultural landmarks.
He took over the business in 1962, first moving it to Queens Road and in the mid-1970s to the current and very familiar Terminus Road location. Always droll, dapper (as befitting an ex-RAF man) and immaculately attired with collar and tie, he was wont to address everyone as “old boy”. His passions were film soundtracks, theatrical cast recordings and classical music with Erich Korngold’s score of the 1942 film Kings Row his favourite.
Keith Blackmore, Co-Director of The Record Album, paid tribute to our former proprietor: “The great vinyl revival of the last 20 years may have caught many of us by surprise but not George Ginn. He had been a steadfast champion ever since he took over The Record Album 60 years ago and never wavered in his view that vinyl records were the greatest way to listen to music, even when CDs and digital streaming seemed for a while to have gained the upper hand.
When I was his customer, his advice on what to buy (and, just as importantly, what not to buy) was invariably right and like many people over the years I heard new things in new ways whenever I visited his shop. I’d often just drop in for a chat then find myself still there two hours later, listening and learning.
George loved music, records and his shop.
He set the bar very high for David, Ben and I when we took over The Record Album five years ago and we do our best every day to live up to the lofty standards he set for us.”
We offer our sincere condolences to his beloved wife Yvonne and their daughters Janice, Debbie and Sarah. George’s funeral was held on July 10 at the Downs Crematorium in Brighton, and he went out to the strains of I’m On My Way from the Paint Your Wagon soundtrack. A lovely sense of humour to the last.