No Nine Lives for Cat's Music

The posters are still up, the shelves stocked with CDs and the ordinary assortment of listening accessories and jewelry items, but Cat's Music on Kingston Pike closed Sept. 10, along with other stores owned by Music City Record Distributors. Part of a family-run group of record shops with locations in Tennessee and South Carolina, the last of the Knoxville Cat's announced its sudden closing with a parting diatribe from the owners posted on its front door. The letter first thanked loyal customers, then said such factors as "internet illegal downloads," "big box retailers like Best Buy, Target and Walmart selling below our cost," and "poor support... [from] record labels" had "reduced the traditional record store to road kill with a slight pulse." This leaves The Disc Exchange in South Knoxville, hip hop seller JK Music on Western Avenue, and f.y.e. in West Town and Knoxville Center as the only dedicated record stores left in town.