Remember The Times

In the SG50 mood of reminiscing all old but cool things of Singapore, I would like to share with you one of my favourite playgrounds when I was still a growing teenager. Having got past the period of recording radio programs and pirated music cassettes, where to next? Head to the coolest record shops which was what I did. Before I step back my journey, I must first thank Ricky Ang, ex-business owner of Kwang Sia Record Shop (hereafter KSRS) for the flashback and so kindly sharing the archives and memories.

The furthest I could remember, although faintly of KSRS was when they were at Level 1 of Ming Court Hotel Shopping Center (now Orchard Parade Hotel).  I was a small boy, visiting my dad for fun during weekends where he was working just opposite them. Years later, in 1978, I was about tall enough to reach for the deeper record shelves,  I bought my first LP, Who Do We Think We Are? (Deep Purple) from them at the basement of Colombo Court. It was a proud moment because this LP was entirely financed with my own pocket money and a chance to show the sales staff that this kid meant business, not just someone who would come so often to comb through every piece in the “New Release” section.

This undated advertisement from New Nation newspaper (1981?)

Back then, my music textbooks consisted of – Billboard Hot 100 clippings pasted outside of record shops; some not too current issues of music papers like NME from Times bookshop and of course, Rediffusion.


In today’s prices, these LP would retail about S$50?




Entrance to KSRS at the basement of Colombo Court.

Besides KSRS, regular homage was paid to Supreme Records, Sing Records, EMI Music Centre, Yu Yi Emporiums and C.K. Tang


Back in those days, you could test just about any new, unsealed records. You hand them what you want to try, they DJ, you listen through headphones




Can you spot ONJ’s Totally Hot, Blondie’s Parallel Lines, Art Garfunkel’s Fate For Breakfast, UFO’s Strangers In The Night and more…

Think I need a time machine and set the clock to the year: 1978 🙂

Archives used with permission.


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