Schoolkids?Records in Exile continues the legacy of the original Ann Arbor Schoolkids' Records. Founded in 1976 by Steve Bergman, Schoolkids' Ann Arbor was originally part of a co-op started by Eric Brown in Athens GA. At one point there were some 24 Schoolkids' around the country, all independently owned. There are still Schoolkids in North Carolina and Ohio. In December of 1976, Bergman broke away from the co-op and with the help of Michael Lang, developed Schoolkids' into one of the premier indie stores in the country. Lang left Schoolkids' in the late 80's and went on to produce jazz reissues for the Verve label, winning several Grammy awards in the process. Michael is currently with Deutsche Grammophone.
In 1985, Bergman started SKR Classical, a stand alone Classical Music store. Schoolkids' later started it's own nationally distributed indie label in 1992, primarily to promote local musicians including Mark "Mr. B" Braun, Dick Siegel, George Bedard and Paul Keller but also releasing several CD's by national acts including The Kingbees; NRBQ co-founder and guitarist, Steve Ferguson; rock diva, Essra Mohawk; Nick Drake specialist, Scott Apell, Rockabilly artist Johnny Powers and reissues by Bill Haley, Al Downing, The Ann Arbor Blues and Jazz Festival, among others. We're very proud to have have made the first recording of Hammond B-3 master, Winston Walls. Winston, the son of Atlantic Records recording artist, Van "the man' Walls, shared young guitarist, George Benson with friend and fellow B3 player, the late jazz giant, Jack McDuff. back in the day in Pittsburgh. The Schoolkids' Label recording, "Boss of the B-3 "captured Winston with Jack Mcduff, B-3's back to back, in live recordings from The Serengeti Ballroom in Detroit and The Ark in Ann Arbor. Also on the date: the late Pistol Allen (of Standing in the Shadow of Motown fame) on drums, Chris Buzelli on guitar, and jazz great Gene Parker on saxophones.
In September of 1998 Schoolkids?went out of business -it was a great 22 year run...
In September of 1998 Schoolkids' went out of business -it was a great 22 year run. However, Schoolkids' Records in Exile later resurfaced as a small 900 sq foot store in a basement location- managed by Schoolkids' founder, Steve Bergman. We are committed to preserving the community music store. If you're in the area, stop by and visit. Although small, the store is crammed with lots of interesting CD's and vinyl for a great browse - and of course please use our web site to access our store inventory and to keep abreast of what's going on in the A squared music community.