The great thing about not yet knowing a ‘new’ city is the stuff you stumble upon. So far we’ve chalked up a few smelly junk shops, the fabulous Tauriq – a preserving jar of Granada’s ceramics, bronze and old chestnut – and various restaurants that get you dribbling just at the thought of them.
And sometimes you enter a place that makes you sweaty sixteen again – well, one of us at least. Back then music was all that mattered; which bassist played on what album, could an LP really be played backwards to hear a hidden message – and should we bunk off school to see Wishbone Ash at the Hammersmith Odeon. We were drawn to an Aladdin’s Cave of a south east London record store, smelling of patchouli oil and saving our pennies for Genesis’ next album. Punk was in its infancy as the Bromley Contingent strutted their stuff along the High Street (we were too busy listening to Led Zeppelin to notice).
Today, Discos Bora Bora, near Granada’s botanical gardens on Plaza de la Universidad – ticks all the right boxes. If you’re in your 40s and – horror! – even your 50s, you’ll particularly like this place. Colourful, eclectic and brimming with a love of music, the place could keep you entertained for hours.
There are signed snare drum skins, photos of musicians, badges, cute t-shirts for babies, instruments, old concert posters and, of course, records – glorious vinyl. The owner, Gonzalo, seemed pleased he had a customer thumbing through the Latin jazz section while also admiring the fabulous guitars (including a 1964 Framus) – and a signed Lemonheads cover sleeve, next to an old Farfisa organ.
If you like this kind of place you may enjoy the nearby vintage clothes shops too. In one visit you could buy a leather jacket with tassels, a bullfighter’s outfit, denim hot pants and a pair of 70s Adidas trainers. In short, this bit of Granada is worth a walk around – if only to admire the magnificent Iglesia de los santos Justo y Pastor which stares down at this little record shop’s front door.
Gonzalo is a great sport, too. On learning he was going to New York, we challenged him to find the location of the cover of Led Zeppelin’s ‘Physical Graffiti’ album. And he did! (you can see him in blue at the bottom of the photo).
The place also gives regular showcases to up-and-coming musicians and bands who pack the small area around the gaggle of instruments. Even some chap from England called Paul Weller showed up once and performed a few songs (Facebook post).
A bite at Cafe Baraka just around the corner is most welcome (the pesto and spinach tostadas are delicious). The warm welcome we got from Gonzalo ended with a gift of a fabulous Discos Bora Bora t-shirt. Yep, been there, got the…. Lovely guy, fantastic shop.
Discos Bora Bora: Plaza de la Universidad, Granada
© con jamón spain