RIVER NORTH — Jazz Record Mart, one of the last remaining record stores Downtown, has shut its doors.
A Jazz Record Mart representative confirmed that the longtime store at 27 E. Illinois St. closed Monday morning. The closure was first reported by the Tribune.
The closure follows the sale of all the store's inventory, which had been pending all of last week. Bob Koester, Jazz Record Mart's owner since the '50s, said he was looking to sell or move the store after his landlord nearly doubled his rent last year.
"I would like to get out of the retail business because my son isn’t interested and my rent is terrible," Koester told DNAinfo Chicago last week.
Koester, who could not be immediately reached for comment, will continue to run his Delmark Records label based in North Center. He first opened his record store in 1959 in the Auditorium Building, 50 E. Congress Parkway, before moving it all over Downtown. The store had been at its current River North locale since 2006.
Philip Tadros of local mini-chain Bow Truss Coffee told DNAinfo Chicago last week he had a deal with the record mart's landlord to inherit the store's space should the mart close. Marielee Macapagal, an asset manager who oversees the 27 E. Illinois building for the landlord, Northbrook-based KJF Properties, did not have an immediate comment on the mart's closure.
The Tribune identified the mart's record buyer as Kent Richmond of Reno, Nev.-based Wolfgang’s Vault, who did not immediately return a message seeking comment. A Reckless Records at 26 E. Madison St. is now the only record store Downtown.
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