Reasons To Love Trumansburg
1) The Moog. The synthesizer as we know it was invented and perfected by Robert Moog in this northern New York town. R.A. Moog Co. occupied 49 Main Street from 1964-1971.
2) Simply Red. Two doors down from the synth’s birthplace is a restaurant named for Mick Hucknall: the owner/chef apparently has a similarly incandescently colored mane. (I say ‘apparently’ as she is also now a proud new mother, and therefore not currently to be found on the premises.) We enjoyed stuffed squash, onion soup, ‘killer shrimp’, local wine, fresh bread and an energetic, family-friendly atmosphere this past Saturday night. I also mislaid the car keys on departure and spent 15 minutes trawling the restaurant floor looking for them. No one batted an eyelid. My kind of place.
3) The Rongovian Embassy. A pub and live music venue with a great name that also had my name stamped all over it. Sadly, by the time we were done with Simply Red we were out of time to hear The Radiators – plus I had two distinctly under-age Fletch juniors with me. Another year, perhaps.
4) Gimme! Coffee. Inhabitants of Williamsburg may be familiar with this name: the Ithaca-based coffee emporium opened its first NYC branch on north Brooklyn’ Lorimer Street in 2003. Closer to its original home, the Trumansburg branch offers up the equivalent of a decent Irish pub’s ability to pour a good Guiness: its employees know how to steam a cappuccino just to perfection. Bonus points for not calling these employees ‘barista partners’ like one mega-coffee chain we could name.
5) The T-Burg Record Store. A few doors down from the “Embassy,” the T-Burg is everything you could ask for from a record store. Recently opened by a true music fan who employs his mother-in-law to tend store while he actually makes a living, the T-Burg actively promotes what it claims to be a vibrant local music scene. It also stays stocked on new and interesting CDs and albums from further afield: The Go! Team’s recently (American re-)released Thunder, Lightning, Strike! was available on heavyweight vinyl, for example. But the T-Burg truly excels in old vinyl, of which the stock is impressively light on filler and thankfully bereft of the scratched-up, ripped-up old albums that dominate most used stores. The Clash bin included a mint vinyl copy of the Straight To Hell soundtrack and Joe Strummer’s 12” single ‘Love Kills’ from the Sid & Nancy movie; the Ian Hunter bin included Mott The Hoople’s pre-Dudes Brain Capers, produced by Guy Stevens; and The Who bin included the McVicar soundtrack and Roger Daltrey’s Best Bits… But hey, you can’t win them all. I was tempted to walk out with Wreckless Eric’s debut album, a Bruce Springsteen bootleg, some Vanilla Fudge on vinyl just because the sleeve looked so good, and a Hank Williams 78 for much the same reason. But I settled for some original 1960s Stones albums, all of which were in mint condition and none of which were retailing for more than $12. The owner – who claims, in true High Fidelity style, “never to have seen a record collection I didn’t want to buy,” then cut me a deal. No wonder he has to work another job. And no wonder I want to go back.