Thursday, 7 July 2011


Here's some ads pertaining to BG Forbes, a shop that sold records and musical instruments.
First though, the photo is a good wee reminder of its location - right on the corner of Commercial Street and Dock Street.
I shopped in here quite a lot in the 70's because it had a really cool selection of jazz vinyl that other record shops in Dundee didn't have - a fine array of ECM albums for example. Some I recall buying were - Terje Rypdal, Jan Garbarek, Pat Metheney, Eberhard Weber, these kind of acts, although I must admit I also came home with a heap of pretty obscure albums from this place too. Names that spring to mind are Pacific Eardrum, Opa, Passport, Brand X, Casiopea, Shakti, Turning Point, PFM, Nucleus, Solution, Azymuth, UK, White Noise, Isotope....and plenty others of this variety.
Why they stocked records such as these was probably down to the fact that the guy who ran the shop, Rob Adams, was himself a bit of a jazz-rock aficionado. In fact he was also in a couple of local bands called Europe and Head, acts influenced by the likes of Weather Report.
Anyway, getting back to the above items - the first ad that's making a "note" of the name, dates from 1978.
The small ad under it is from a 1972 Telegraph and the next one is from a 1977 Telegraph - both displaying albums that were more commercial than the kind I usually bought from there.
The 2 yellow items date from 1980 and were adverts that cropped up on the reverse side of tickets for gigs on at the University. The idea being that if you took the ticket stubs into Forbes you got £1 knocked off the price of the related albums - these here being for Peter Gabriel and Mike Oldfield.
We'll just have to ignore the fact that the Uni got the address wrong on one of them!!
Top photo by Neale Elder.


  1. Didn't they seel singles with no inserts like they had came from a jukebox ? i'm sure you used to have to use the wee centre plastic adaptor that you got with your "music centre" to play them! :)

  2. It was indeed Rob - tall bearded fella. Was also in a group called "Head". I so enjoyed going in there - lots of different music playing all the time and he would put on stuff if you asked - a proper record shop with somebody into music. Heard U2 here first. Ordered a load of punk records there and Rob would give me a discount. Great shop.

  3. Now that you mention it, I can't even recall seeing any singles in the shop. They must have sold them though. I was probably far too preoccupied rummaging through the album racks to notice!

  4. I bought Kraftwerk's 'Auotbahn' LP there in 1974, managing to turn some hippy heads in disbelief as I asked for it. It was playing in the shop at the time, possibly for them to ridicule. Punk rock must have been the last straw for these hairy gits.

  5. I dont know about that, I bought all sorts from this place, Be-Bop Deluxe's Axe Victim, Iggy and the Stooges Raw Power (saw him at hop farm at the weekend....brilliant) Television's Prove It 12" Green Vinyl, Loads of other stuff too.... a Great Well Run Record Shop sadly missed!

  6. Rob was a great guy bought my first david sanborn album there, than got in to a lot of ecm stuff

  7. The Hisdtorian7 July 2011 at 11:23

    Wish it was there now... and Chalmers & Joy, Bruces, Rockpile...

  8. Rob also worked in BG Forbes when they were in Victoria Road. If I remember right his dad also worked there and Rob worked there after school and Saturdays.He had the best record collection ever

  9. the big fella is still around and found here

  10. Thanks for the link, anon.
    I had no idea Rob was a music journalist nowadays. A job that seems ideal for him.