I’ve been waiting a while to put this song on my blog. I LOVE IT. But some will be offended by the f-bombs and other offensive language in it, so if that’s you, skip it and keep reading.
If I owned a thrift shop, this song would definitely be on the playlist (there is, apparently, a bleeped out version that I might opt for.) I’d also add some Dan Mangan, Said the Whale, Keb’ Mo (who I just discovered), Jack Johnson, Xavier Rudd, Wailin’ Jennys and yes, even the Beach Boys. I might add some Yo Yo Ma to the mix but I’d choose his Appalacian Waltz CD, not his Bach one. Cheerful, happy tunes – that’s what a shopper wants.
This week, I had a conversation about music with a friend who works in a thrift shop. She’s one of the folks who chooses what shoppers AND volunteers will listen to while the shop is open (note the distinction between listening audiences, I’ll get to that in a minute.) She thinks she’s choosing a wide variety of tunes but sometimes the volunteers that the music is too classical, or too serious, or… not enough “top-40-Christian”.
There have been all kinds of studies done about the effect that music has on shoppers. Loud music makes people shop faster. Apparently French music in a wine store will increase French wine sales. German music translates into German wine sales. Classical music is popular but can also be associated with wealth and make people think that it’s an expensive store. So clearly, the tunes you play are important.
Tell that to a volunteer. Most volunteers want to listen to their favourite tunes while they’re sorting and pricing in the back of the shop. But that music may not be what motivates a shopper to spend money in your shop – and isn’t that the point, after all? In a perfect world, you’d have separate sound systems for the floor and for the back, but most shops don’t have that luxury.
So, what do to? Tunes for shoppers or tunes for volunteers? What would be on your thrift shop play list?