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Borderline Music to Leave Boystown: 'The Boys Don't Come Here Anymore'

By Serena Dai | July 30, 2013 8:22am | Updated on July 30, 2013 12:49pm
 Borderline Music, a record shop known for its Madonna collection, plans to leave Boystown after 13 years.
Borderline Music Plans Move to Andersonville
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LAKEVIEW — A music shop known for its extensive Madonna collection is planning a move to Andersonville after 13 years on Broadway.

Scott Jannush will be shuttering his shop, Borderline Music at 3333 N. Broadway, by the end of August. The shop's online store will continue as Jannush seeks a storefront in Andersonville, where he feels the city's gay community has migrated.

"I was always known as Boystown's record store," Jannush said. "The target was the gay community. The gay community is no longer on this strip of Broadway."

Borderline Music focuses on pop and dance records and has hosted artist performances and meet-and-greets in the past. In 2008, Lady Gaga popped in to chat with fans, and longtime Madonna backup singer Donna De Lory used to come in before concerts to perform, Jannush said.

He opened in 2000 because he thought the gay community needed a specialty music store. The area was so lively that customers would tell him they couldn't come in because there wasn't any parking, he said.

But in the last few years, Broadway north of Belmont Avenue has lost favor, he said. He pointed to an empty storefront across the street at Broadway and Buckingham Place and the readily available street parking.

Broadway has become "an extension of Wrigleyville," he said. 

"This past year, it was a huge, drastic change," Jannush said. "This is no longer a destination neighborhood. The boys don't come here anymore."

Jannush isn't the only person bemoaning Boystown's decline. Business owners have been vocal about the need to revive the area as a gay destination, and some believe that a $30 million LGBT-focused hotel will do it.

Jannush said he didn't know much about the hotel plan, but is excited about his move. He plans to take his time looking for the right storefront and may not reopen a physical location until late fall. About half the store's inventory is 50 percent off as he tries to clear out.

Andersonville is more "vibrant," he said, and most of his customers have told him that they live in that neighborhood anyway.

He hopes that further north, he'll be able to find a bigger space and host more events, he said. 

"It was a great run, don't get me wrong," he said. "But the neighborhood’s changed."