Monday, 4 August 2008


Cathie McCabe's in the Murraygate wasn't exactly the coolest record shop in Dundee in the 70's, but I did find myself shopping there on a regular basis - not so much for vinyl, but for concert tickets.
Cathie was an agent and could get you tickets for any gig in Scotland.
I ended up going to dozens of gigs in Glasgow & Edinburgh, sometimes as many as 3 a week. She would also run buses when a concert was particularly popular. Many of the acts I saw never played in Dundee, for example - Bob Marley, Herbie Hancock, Roxy Music, Weather Report, Gary Numan, Rainbow, Brand X, Tangerine Dream, The Cure, Black Sabbath, The Eagles, Eric Clapton, Kate Bush, Bad Company, Camel, Bob Dylan, Talking Heads, Pink Floyd, Spyro Gyra, Devo, Uriah Heep, Undertones, Robin Trower and plenty others - so travelling out of town was the only way to catch them in action.
The advert is a typical example of the kind of event McCabe's were involved in. It's for the Loch Lomond Rock Festival in May 1979. I was at a couple of outdoor festivals in '79 but for some reason, I didn't go to this one, despite it being a decent line-up.
Anyway, one strange record I do recall buying from this shop in 1977 - strange in that, it was a totally unexpected find to see this piece of vinyl in amongst the mundane chart pop stuff - a 7 inch single by Planet Gong and called "Opium For The People", a rather unusual punky effort from the space rockers!! Goodness knows how that ended up in her shop - maybe a rep dropped it in the racks without her knowing!!
Underneath the ad is a reminder of the shop carrier bag. The reason why there is a piano on it is because Cathie herself used to perform as a pianist back in the 50's & 60's and so collected all sorts of piano related memorabilia.
Some of you may recall that they also had a wee kiosk outside their Murraygate shop - this was where they sold scratch cards! A little sideline they had going!

The picture was taken in June 1978.
Photo by DC Thomson.


  1. Cathie McCabe's daughter was the buyer for the shops, and she organized the concert tickets & buses and was very often on the buses herself. The shop stocked one of the widest variety of records in Scotland, most of the DJ's would get there sounds from Joan and Thursday was the day for all the new sound. The shops closed due to the influx of the big national record shops HMV, Virgin which sold the top 20 records at a leader loss.