Electric Fetus named top 25 record store by Rolling Stone magazine

Not even a tornado clipping the century-old building of the Electric Fetus in August 2009 could stop the record store from getting a high ranking on Rolling Stone’s list of the top 25 record stores in the United States.

The music magazine this week ranked Electric Fetus, 2000 4th Ave. S., as the sixth-best record store in the country.

Rolling Stone wrote: “The unhurried atmosphere, aisles filled with browsers, and available incense and knickknacks make the Minneapolis location of the Fetus, as everyone calls it, the city’s indispensable record shopping experience.”

Electric Fetus first opened in 1968 on the city’ West Bank. Owner Keith Covart moved the store to its current digs in 1972.

In August 2009 a small tornado hit the store, causing nearly $1 million in damages, Covart said. Over the past year shoppers have navigated repairs to the roof, air conditioners and windows. Work finally ended in early September.

Rolling Stone credits the staff of the store for Fetus’s popularity.

“Jazz, hip-hop, blues, and world-music fans are especially well served here — no surprise, since the Fetus is a regional distributor as well as a shop. Many of the staffers have been there for decades; regulars head straight to the far wall for densely-packed shelves of new and local releases,” the Stones wrote.

Covart agreed.

“It’s obviously the knowledge of our people,” he said. “They’re excited about music and it shows, and obviously we have a good selection, we couldn’t make it without it. You just go up and ask for help, and they’re not jumping on you, but if you want help I don’t think there’s a better crew anywhere.”