As if there weren't enough reasons to celebrate the Electric Fetus 40th Anniversary this week (including tomorrow's Atmosphere and Brother Ali in-store, huge discounts all week, and an anniversary blowout at First Ave on Friday), Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak has just declared Friday, June 13 "Electric Fetus Day."
In an essay about the history of the Fetus by Jim Walsh, which will be published later this week on the Electric Fetus website, Mayor Rybak sings his praises of the landmark record store:
“I’ve been coming here since 1970,” says Minneapolis mayor R.T. Rybak, cradling a stack of CDs (Grace Jones, Marvin Gaye, Elvis Costello), and looking for more. “First thing I bought? Rod Stewart’s Gasoline Alley and Joe Cocker’s Mad Dogs and Englishmen. I come here a lot, especially whenever I have two hours on a Saturday like right now. I just saw Bob Weir last night, and I thought, `You know, I don’t really have any good Grateful Dead; I should get some.’”
Few are more qualified to sum up the impact of the Fetus than the mayor of Music City North.
“You look around here and you see people from all different cultures and all different ages,” he says. “It’s important to have a great independent local music store that doesn’t homogenize. This is a great music town, and you can come in here and find something that is not out of some kind of box or the big chain stores.
“One Christmas ago, my son was about to go to college and I thought he should get some really good jazz. I thought he really needed some Miles Davis. I came here and ran into this kid my son knows, and we got into this really intense conversation about Miles Davis, and I realized that this thing that had gotten passed on to me by people older than me I was now passing on to someone else. It made me feel pretty good.”