October 31, 2012
It makes perfect sense. That’s what Drew McKercher says about the move of Morningbell Records. But don’t worry: you won’t have to go far to find the new location. As of today, Morningbell is open just down the hall in Duling School, doors from where they opened last March.
Going from three rooms to one may seem cramped, but McKercher says it’s smart all the way around. “We never used all three rooms at the same time,” he says of the old space. Morningbell will take the southwestern corner of the school, once occupied by a Fondren Church class room. And the church will shift down the hall into the previous record store space. “Actually, square footage wise, this one room is bigger than the room we used to have shows in.”
And that’s exactly where the focus shifts. McKercher says live performances have been the heart and soul of Morningbell since day one. “We’re going to incorporate the studio into the store and record live shows,” he says as he paints to ready the space. The red wall and black shag carpet make the perfect spot for the store’s “After School Sessions.” McKercher sees these as a way to give back and help out local bands.
Consolidation also gives McKercher two more things: time and money. As a father of a toddler and a new baby on the way, the Vicksburg native says he’ll need to be home more often. “We just wanted to make this more manageable,” he explains. And financially, the move allows for a better inventory. “When you’re paying rent and trying to buy for the store, it becomes one or the other.” But, don’t let the cut backs cause you concern. McKercher tells us “business is great.”