Ear X-Tacy, a popular independent record store that served Louisville, Kentucky, for 26 years, shut down over the weekend.
Jim James, frontman of Louisville's My Morning Jacket, posted a testimonial for the store on the band's website: "there is a tear in my eye right now as i hear about the closing of one of my favorite places on earth- ear-xtacy," the post reads in part. "i send thanks and healing vibes to [owner John D. Timmins] and everyone who has worked so hard at the store over the years…the presence of that sacred place will be sorely missed. people- let this be a big wake up call to us…we need these places to gather as a community and share ideas about music and art and love and life and…. for the love of god…. it cant all take place online…or i fear that one day we will all wake up bleary-eyed and hung over from our technology binge and find the real world long gone."
Owner John D. Timmins posted the following note on the store's website under the heading "We're sad to say ... Thank you and goodbye":
"Dear Louisville, and all who have shopped, supported, and loved ear X-tacy over the years,
"It has been a dream come true…actually, a dream exceeded, to be part of your musical lives here in Louisville for the last 26 years. My life was changed forever, and guided by the power of music since I can remember. Music has been the soul, the heart, the passion of my life for my entire 56 years. The record store experience has been the only child in my life. Now, it's time for me to let it fly.
"Thank YOU…for allowing me to be part of your musical universe. Louisville, you made me feel like I was truly HOME when I moved here in 1976. It's been a great ride, but as George Harrison knowingly said, 'All Things Must Pass.' It's with sadness, but also with great pride I say to you now…
"ear X-tacy is no more
"Long live ear X-tacy!
"Please keep the music alive. Support the incredible music scene and independent businesses we have here! Until you leave this great city, you cannot realize what a unique treasure we have here. Embrace it, celebrate it, and promote it. Love it.
"Thank you all for making my dreams come true. Thank you for making ear X-tacy the wonderful place that it was. I thank all of the staff that made this store THE hub for music in Louisville for the past 26 years. Please take pride in knowing that YOU have been the heart and soul of what this store became. Thank you for sharing my dream and exceeding all of my expectations! To all of the musicians who have graced our store and stage, I cannot tell you what a thrill it's been. From the local newbies to the incredibly huge national artists…THANK YOU for gracing our store and sharing you incredible musical talents with us all…that's what I like to call: 'earX-tacy.'
"Love, peace, music and ear X-tacy to you all,
John D. Timmons
President, ear X-tacy, Inc."
2011 has been a tough year for record stores, with legendary independent stores like Atlanta's Criminal and Long Beach, California's VIP headed for closure as well.