City Guide: Still Hogwild after all these years

You may have heard that our favorite indie record store, Hogwild Records (1824 North Main, across from San Antonio College), has thrown a few 30th Anniversary bashes for themselves recently. However, they were missing a very important detail up until now — the actual year the shop opened its doors. Was it ’80 or ’81? We’re not quibbling, as long as those doors stay open.

In addition to brand-spanking new CDs, music DVDs, and special-edition vinyl released by your favorite contemporary bands, throwbacks obviously reign supreme at Hogwild. The shop started carrying used CDs and vinyl in the late ’80s and continues to purchase from locals who need a place to unload their stash for a constantly changing collection. In addition to the tunes, Hogwild carries plenty of novelty items like window decals, customized buttons, and poster flags — not to mention rows upon rows of black T-shirts just begging to be taken home.

So how has Hogwild managed to stick around all these years? Staffers are quick to credit customer loyalty. They share stories of teenage regulars in the ’80s whose kids have since become customers, Austinites who head south on I-35 for their metal fix, and a high-schooler who takes three buses once a week to get to the shop. But Hogwild gives back too. The combined musical knowledge of the staff is unparalleled (they can school you on everything from punk and metal, to blues and jazz) and the shop’s ability to order hard-to-find specialty items earns devil horns from us. In addition, Hogwild has always been a strong supporter of San Antonio’s local music scene. The outlet will carry CDs or EPs from any band or musician who asks them to do so, and there is a designated space for show flyers and other promotional items.

So ’80 or ’81? It’s tricky. It seems that owner Dave Risher operated out of the Northwest Flea Market before opening the store proper in March of 1982. Staffers informed the Current that Hogwild is officially counting the time spent in the flea market and will continue turning 30 for the remainder of 2011, celebrating with shows by several notable local bands. We’ll be celebrating with them.

more indie record stores

Alamo Records & Sheet Music

Located on the third floor of a downtown antique mall, the vast collection of dad rock and disco should be no surprise. But a search of the disheveled boxes reveals countless old-timey obscurities. One of the most extensive, if eclectic, vinyl collections in town. 125 Broadway, (210) 212-4200

Del Bravo Record Shop

Owned by Salomé Gutiérrez, Del Bravo has been in business for more than 30 years in the same location. Besides having a complete selection of Tejano, norteño, conjunto, Tex-Mex, tropical, grupero, and Onda Chicana (in CD, cassette, and vinyl formats from 45 rpm to LP), Del Bravo is also the home of the Tejas Music Museum, which includes old photographs and even a dress worn by Tejano legend Lydia Mendoza in her prime. 554 Old Hwy 90 W, (210) 432-8351

Janie’s Record Shop

In business for more than 25 years, Janie’s is a key stop if you’re looking for new and classic Tejano, norteño, conjunto, and Mexican regional music. Their motto? “If we don’t have it, we’ll find it.” 1012 Bandera Road, (210) 735-2070,

Read more from our 2011 City Guide here.

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