It's been a long time coming.
For the past 6 years I've been running the label from the comfort of my home (or homes, considering we've moved apartments a handful of times in the past several years).
And with each passing year, as the label's operations grew — things like pressing more releases, fulfilling more orders, meeting more artists and producers in person — the need for a dedicated physical space became apparent.
I can't tell you how many fans, folks, and friends have asked us where our shop is, only for me to tell them that we run Aloha Got Soul almost entirely from our laptops. Oh, and a storage unit that I got in November 2019, which came in clutch considering that the COVID-10 pandemic had us staying at home for extended periods of time, and sitting around the apartment with boxes of vinyl, CDs and merch wouldn't have been very enjoyable.
Well, we now have an answer: our new shop is located in Mōʻiliʻili, Honolulu, a quaint residential neighborhood bordered by Waikiki and the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.
The shop will be called, simply, AGS.
Our new location will serve as both a retail space and our label headquarters.
As I type this, we're in the midst of renovation and buildout, working daily to bring the space from what was once a long-standing satellite TV store (there were remnants of a Direct TV decal on the interior Ewa-facing wall) to a boutique record shop, which will round out the much-loved "McCully Chop Suey" building on the corner of McCully and King Streets. Neighboring tenants in the building include MŌNO Hawaii, Wimini, Truest, Sweet Enemy and Mojo Barbershop. We feel we're in great company!
Giving it this simple, acronym'd name will help us create a refined identity for the shop that's distinct from the label (Aloha Got Soul) and can stand on its own. Online, its destination will be www.ags.earth. On the ground, AGS will act as a local record shop "celebrating sound and vision" with an emphasis on curated music and music-adjacent merchandise.
Yes, we'll be selling Aloha Got Soul releases in the shop, but we'll also be carrying new titles from like-minded independent labels and artists from the world over. Plus, a tailored selection of used vinyl, possibly some CDs and tapes too. And merchandise? Keep checking back here and on Instagram as those details come together.
Thanks to everyone who’s supported us throughout the years. And thanks to all the cafes, coworking spaces, and communities we’ve grown to love and appreciate. Without your support and presence, we wouldn't feel as confident and comfortable in taking this next step.
Our doors are schedule to open in early June 2021. We hope see you soon.