from 13 reviews
|ADDRESS:||25 Lower Marsh, Lambeth|
London, SE1 7RJ
|MAP:||See Gramex on a map|
|NEAREST STATION:||Lambeth North|
|TELEPHONE:|| 020 7401 3830|
|EMAIL:||Send an email|
|OPENING HOURS:||11am- 7pm Monday to Saturday|
|BUSINESS TYPE:||Records, Tapes & CD's|
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If you love classical music, especially opera, Gramex is the place to go to buy or part exchange your CDs.
It is a charming place - you're made very welcome. It's worth a visit just to chat to the owner Roger. I go regularly as you often find a bargain and all my purchases have been in excellent condition.
It's the sort of shop that can never be replaced. A one off.
Name: Viva Verdi
From out of country, I visited Gramex on two consecutive days last October. I was immediately welcomed, and made to feel at home. They have older to recent releases. For the uninitiated, older CDs are on shelves, and the newer on tables or floor. All "used", all reasonably priced. Thank you, Grame
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Location: Not given
I discovered this shop last year on one of my infrequent visits to London and was immediately made welcome in a way that I have never experienced in a shop. One was free to browse for as long as one wished and the selection of CDs was vast and varied. As in any such shop, it is entirely serendipity as to what you may find and prices are modest compared to some other second-hand shops that I have visited. The constant chat from Roger is a delight and you either take it or leave it.
Name: Michael Horwood
Gramex is the best second hand CD store I have ever visited. There are many, many CDs to choose among, all reasonably priced. I had a delightful shopping experience there on 30 June and I will surely go there again the next time I stay in London.
A simply delightful shop for classical connoisseur or newcomer alike; the two owners have an encyclopaedic knowledge of repertoire and recordings and listening to them debate the relative merits of opera singers is like hearing a pair of Radio 3 presenters in full flow.
The prices are great value and the CDs, although second hand, all seemed to be in excellent condition. I'll be dropping by every time I visit London in future - they're only 5 minutes from Waterloo Station.
I love this place. Most of my CD collection has come out of their doors. The staff are most welcoming: once they get to know you, they offer you tea/coffee and whatnot. That's quite special. They are also highly knowledgeable - verging at times on the idiosyncratic, curmudgeonly and opinionated. But their knowledge of their subject is vast, deep, and honed by decades of experience. Their prices are keen, in order to keep people coming in the age of the downloader, and like all businesses they cannot give away money for stock they might never sell. But if you have stuff they want, you get a fair price. And on occasion, if you happen to arrive shortly after a large intake of stock, it can be an Aladdin's cave of delights.!
Every time I go back (four or five times a year), I fear that I will find it closed down like practically every other competitor. But they hold out, perhaps on account of passionate attachment to their craft as any commercial imperative. LONG LIVE GRAMEX!
Thank you, guys for existing!
The sign on the window says 'best prices paid'. I took some CDs to sell - including unusual early music - and was offered 50p per CD. I walked away..I can get better prices at a car boot sale. Take the sign down or pay decent prices.
I'm a student at King's who's recently moved to Lambeth, and strolling through Lower Marsh I discovered Gramex. As a cash-strapped student I have no money to pay full price for opera and oratario, so the prices at Gramex were extremely welcome. The format is brilliant: relaxing chairs, free cups of tea, and a chance to test your potential purchases before you buy them. Roger and friends are always most helpful and the frequent chats between staff and customers are normally illuminating. It's a wonderful place to while away a couple of hours and spend some time soaking up the atmosphere. Highly recommended to all classical music/jazz Londoners, and those coming over from abroad.
I re-discovered Gramex a few weeks ago, and the minute I walked through the door, I felt transported back in time,to when I first found this wonderful shop.
Nothing seemed to have changed, apart from there being lots of CDs and DVDs now. But still the magical collection of 12"and 10" LPs; Paradise for me.
I spent far, far longer than I should have that afternoon, letting train after train go because I could just not drag myself away from the wonderful company of Roger and his friends in the fascinating atmosphere of the shop.
As I had worked at Glyndebourne Festival in the years since my first visit, we had so much to talk about; opera singers, conductors, producers and designers that I had the great fortune to work with over the years.
Roger was particularly interested in the first British performance of "The Rake's Progress", and the premiere of Hans Werner Henze's "Elegy for Young Lovers" with the fabulous Elizabeth Soderstrom as Elizabeth Zimmer, and Kirstin Meyer as Carolina.
It will be interesting to see how a new production of "Elegy" in London, is received.
Hours late, I eventually managed to drag myself away from Gramex and head, with a happy heart, back to Waterloo Station, and my train.
GRAMEX is still in business in Lower Marsh Street. It is the only dedicated second hand classical CD shop I have seen, and I love the format, two old guys in leather armchairs dispensing advice and opinion. I'm getting into opera slowly and I was guided to an OK version of Verdi's Otello for £7, its £25 second hand on Amazon.
'Jazz' is downstairs in the cellar: this is your grandad's Jazz, Humphery Lyttleton and Louis Armstrong, not Coltrane or Miles Davis.
Long may they prosper.
A veritable mecca for lovers of 78s, LPs, and CDs--all used, of course, with a staff knowledgeable and most helpful. In 1999, I wandered in on a summer afternoon and came away with rare 78s by Adelina Patti. Now CDs have taken over most of the space, and I always find desirable classical disks to add to my collection. Proprietor Roger is a walking encyclopaedia of information about operatic recordings of artists from both past and present---no matter how "rare and rotten." His colleague John is equally helpful with both classical and jazz recordings. Gramex is now always my first stop after arrival from the US for a refreshing cup of tea and a look at the wares with Roger and John. Frequently, one may strike up a conversation with a star from Covent Garden desiring from Roger information about past stars in particular roles. Gramex is a refreshing change of pace from the musical megastores. "I went to London and got as far as Gramex."
Sells both classical(mainly) and jazz - all records/cds are second hand (usually in excellent condition). The selection is limited (according to what has been recently bought) but usually contains interesting stuff, as the knowledgable staff tend to buy only the best material. It has a pronounced air of specialists' shop (which it is, being frequented by nationally-known reviewers and musicians), yet staff are extremely helpful and are always ready to recommend works to the notive. You can also listen to stuff on headphones (and hear it because there is never music played in the shop - customers apparently didn't want it (and reflection of the customer-first attitude of the owner). All in all, an excellent shop, but as noted, you cannot guarantee that they stock any particular item - least of all a recent and 'popular' recording - that item released only in Belgium, on an obscure label, in the 1990s - you might find that.
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