Al Brown: Transitions: University Ave

Al Brown, owner of Landfill, Applause, and Cheapo Records discusses his thoughts on University Avenue’s future

Interviewed by: Riva Storch
Photos by: Alleen


Can you introduce yourself and state the name of your business located on University Avenue as well as your other stores?

I’m Allan Brown and my business is Applause Music and Cheapo Records.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

I guess being able to work with music.

Is this a family business?

No, it’s not a family business. It’s my business, if you consider that a family business. For forty years I’ve enjoyed working with pre-recorded music and I started with a small store and built it up into several stores and this warehouse. It’s just full of stored records and CDs.

Could you describe about what you know about the history of the building?

Not much. Anything I ‘ve heard of the history of the building has come from the Historical Society.

How do you think the Central Corridor Light Rail Transit Project will affect University Avenue?

I would think it would make University Avenue a much better shopping area. Even though it will reduce parking in places I think overall it will bring many more people to the area.

Will construction of the future light rail have an impact on your business?

Not on my business, no.

What communication have you had with the Met Council regarding the CCLRT Project, the light rail project?

Well they’ve sent us a lot of information and since I don’t really have a retail business here, I haven’t paid a lot of attention to what’s going on. And the, you know the, we got some money for -- they leased for the front one-foot strip of the property to put up a fence.

Imagine five to ten years from now. Do you have any future plans for this building after the CCLRT project is done?

I really don’t know at this time what I will do with the building so I -- it could be many different things and I’m not even certain if I will own the building, you know, five years from now.

OK. Well thank you so much.

Made possible by the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the vote of Minnesotans on November 4, 2008. Administered by the Minnesota Historical Society.