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Best Crate-Diggin' Spot 

Funky Riddms

Superstar DJs abound in the Bay Area, and the prevalence of crate-diggin' spots -- places to build up a fearsome vinyl collection -- has got to be a major reason why. The other day, DJ Quest of Live Human and the Bulletproof Space Travelers was spotted casually leafing through a stack of dog-eared LPs at the Ashby BART flea market. He was diggin', he said, for weird vocal tones, soundtracks, and the like for his turntable compositions. No doubt if you know what you're searching for (like CTI, Prestige, and Blue Note albums from the late '60s and early '70s), flea markets, garage sales, swap meets, and even Goodwill can become anthropological treasure troves. However, seasoned crate-diggers are known for jealously guarding their spots, and tend to arrive at dig sites very early to thwart their rivals. Similarly, at the big used-record stores, buyers sometimes hoard all the really quality stuff for themselves. So if you're unwilling to tromp through warehouses and basements for hours looking for that obscure David Axelrod gem, an alternative is Funky Riddms, where you can take advantage of the diggin' expeditions and expertise of others. You might pay a little more, but just think of what you'll save in laundry bills. The store is small but mighty, stocked with already-proven albums handpicked by proprietor DJ Riddm. Funky Riddms mainly carries classic hip-hop, though you can also find some new releases, reissues and compilations, dancehall and roots reggae, and Afrobeat -- as well as a smattering of groovy old funk, soul, and jazz discs.

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