Brothers, Jazz Cats, and Smokers: Music and Cannabis at Florida’s Foundation Records


Cool is a loose ideology, set by these who stand at its forefront. But its core can be observed inside Foundation—a compact, unassuming record retailer that specializes in vintage clothes, vinyl, and insightful conversation with two unpretentious brothers.

Positioned in the College Park neighborhood in Orlando, Florida, Alex and Peter Cohen have curated a spot with “cool” as its principal descriptor. A lone clothes rack stands outdoors the storefront to entice curious passersby. Their window is slightly blocked by cassette tapes, stereos, and old toys (like a Steve Urkel doll). And if their door is open, ideal think a slight fragrance of warm tobacco is wafting outdoors, along with the sounds of what ever psych rock or funk record Alex or Peter are gawking more than for the week.

“We view our inventory as a record shop with the fat trimmed off of it,” says Alex, the older of the sibling duo. “There’s not a lot of bullshit to go by way of.”

“We do not box ourselves in with just a single genre,” Peter tells Leafly. “We specialize in original pressings, but we’ve got almost everything. Blues, electronic, Kraut rock, difficult rock, hip-hop—all of it.”

Curating Sound and Aesthetic in a Exclusive Space

(Courtesy of Foundation)

Foundation’s interior is a mixture of a music fanatic’s version of /r/CozyPlaces, tinged with a touch of 90s teenage boy bedroom aesthetic. Retro toys, colorful art books, and record poster-inserts decorate the store’s guts, as several decades of vinyl and old t-shirts and jackets hang from shelving and clothes racks.

The retailer delivers a compact collection of cassette tapes, and a significantly larger wide variety of records which span in pricing primarily based on situation and rarity. It is clear that immediately after a single flip-by way of of a stocked record bin that Foundation does not specialize in any a single genre of music, but chooses to showcase classics and underrated cuts inside the Cohen brothers’ respective tastes. Vinyl wide variety contains the sounds of Parliament Funkadelic, Kate Bush, Nigerian rock bands like The Witch, OutKast, Pavement, The Grateful Dead, Curtis Mayfield, and significantly additional. Peter and Alex Cohen do not just stock their shelves. They very carefully curate it.

The two brothers, born in New York—Peter in Extended Island, Alex in Queens—and raised in Naples in South Florida, began dabblinin the music scene from a booking angle back in 2012. In college, Alex was pursuing a organization degree, though Peter sought immediately after communications, but each in the end dropped out to concentrate on a inventive endeavor they had been cooking up in their downtime: Apply Stress.

Apply Stress started as an agency that booked Florida hip-hop shows, but sooner or later snowballed into an agency that managed Floridan artists and talent they actually believed in. Alex and Peter worked their firm complete-time, climaxing with a lead-up toward an album release they felt was in the end underwhelming due to downward trends inside the music market.

“The market was just going in a various path,” Peter recalled. “I’m not confident when Lil Pump came out, but after that occurred, music kinda shifted. I really feel like Lil Pump truly helped fuck up the market.”

The dynamic shift in the way the online and buyers have been hearing music was intensified for the duration of the SoundCloud rap boom, in which hip-hop’s sound was glorified melodic mumble music, and hip-hop was becoming pumped out at a fast-fire pace that left no space for the artists Apply Stress had managed to withhold any staying energy. With digital streaming solutions supplying a barrage of new music on a every day basis, it is no wonder why so numerous newer, online-emerging artists get lost in the shuffle.

Solace and Inspiration By means of Vintage Vinyl

Among booking shows with Apply Stress, Alex and Peter located solace in their downtime holding vintage and vinyl pop-ups. The two sometimes brought out a merch table to shows to sell old records, toys, and clothes, and started opening pop-ups in the front yard of their residence in downtown Orlando.

“If you are an artist in Florida and you want to do a pop-up right here or host a compact intimate listening celebration, we’re right here.”

Peter Cohen, Foundation Co-Owner

The brothers had snowballed their pop-ups by way of Instagram, marketing their stock by way of hashtags and promoting their clothes and vinyl by way of DMs. It was April of 2016 when Peter and Alex ultimately opened a brick-and-mortar shop for promoting vinyl and vintage products. It was July 2016 when Apply Stress dissolved, and Foundation became the two’s principal concentrate of operations.

“From undertaking all the shows, it created us understand the worth in building a platform—which could be something, truly,” Alex tells Leafly. “Right now, it is our shop. We’re just a residence-base kind of spot. I consider more than the final couple of years, we’ve truly cultivated that image.”

Outdoors of stocking original vinyl pressings, Foundation also slings vintage clothes. Old band t-shirts that have survived washings considering that the 70s and 80s have maintained their structure on Foundation’s retailer racks, boasting names like Judas Priest and Iron Maiden. 90s t-shirts from Marvel, old theme-park clothes from Halloween Horror Nights’ regional previous, and bootleg shirts of Spice Girls and 2Pac are a couple of pieces that borderline novelty, serving as niche and trendy rarities in 2019.

Foundation is the existing incarnation of the Cohen brothers’ output in Florida, but it appears their roles have been ever-altering considering that their time with Apply Stress. From management, to booking, to consumer service experiences with vinyl and vintage, the brothers now have almost 3 years of retailer operations below their belt. The retailer has also been a safeplace for regional College Park higher schoolers to socialize.

“The children just began to come in and we’ve constructed relationships with them,” Alex explains at the store’s front counter. “They know they can come in right here and not acquire something, just kinda shoot the shit.” “And smell like shit,” Peter interjected. “Yeah, just be a higher college punk ass,” Alex continued. “But also know that it is nevertheless a retail atmosphere, and if a consumer comes in, they know not to rip the Juul, or what ever.”

“We appear at The Foundation as a platform for our buyers,” Peter told Leafly. “If you are an artist in Florida and you want to do a pop-up right here or host a compact intimate listening celebration, we’re right here.”

As for cannabis, the two dabble outdoors of their retailer to support alleviate pressure and preserve a level head when searching for out new stock for their retailer, markets, and other sellers. “We like the classic stuff,” Peter says. “I really like a great Sour Diesel or a good OG,” tells Alex. “GSC and all that shit are terrific, also. I do not like Mangos or Blue Dream or Barry White… They’re just mass-made strains. We maintain it classic.”

Come across Sour Diesel Nearby

Come across GSC Nearby

As for the future, Foundation is seeking forward to maintaining it compact and neighborhood-primarily based. “I really feel like in 5 years, this shop will nevertheless be right here,” mentioned Alex. “We like getting a compact shop mainly because we can very carefully curate it and we know what’s going on,” mentioned Peter. “We like it like that, our buyers like it like that. We’ve been to other records shops, and we’re compact, but pound per pound, we can compete. I can confidently say that.”


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