Lucky Records in Paris continues its journey in 2021, MadonnaUnderground speaks exclusively to Nicholas who is one of the new owners.
Are you aware of how iconic and loved ‘Lucky Records’ is among Madonna fans?
Of course, I know the store very well. In 1996 when I started working at Warner Christophe (one of the founders of the place) called me to introduce himself. We were preparing the launch of the single “Don’t Cry For Me Argentina”. We took advantage of the exposure that such a specialized store (and also a magazine like “Spotlight”) could bring to the promo within the fan community, to start a real partnership with them.
Lucky Records has always been THE place to go to during Madonna events in Paris, fans hope it will stay that way, can you tell us what your plans are for the future of the shop?
We will continue the immense task already done by the previous team to honor their work and continue in the same direction. We want to live up to this, and above all not disappoint the fans!
Lucky Records is known mostly for being a ‘Madonna store’ but does also sell music by other artists, will you keep Madonna as the main artist or will the store become more like a ‘regular’ music shop?
The main idea is to continue in the same way. We will keep the big names that made the reputation of the place… Madonna as the main reference, accompanied by great artists like Michael Jackson or Mylène Farmer. Some artists will come to embellish the catalog (Serge Gainsbourg, Françoise Hardy,…) And a new generation will come to enrich the references currently proposed, Ariana Grande, Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber, Angèle….We want to develop the vinyl which is our field of predilection!
When you heard that the owners of Lucky Records were to retire and were looking for someone to take over, did you instantly jump at the chance?
I had seen, like everyone else, a post that Maurice and George were leaving but I really hadn’t thought about the possibility of a takeover. Then I got Maurice on the phone to talk about an artist I’m working on and we talked about this departure… I told him that the store had to continue because the adventure was too good to stop! We stayed there, but on my side I talked about it with several friends, and there it became a little more concrete. One of us (Clément had always dreamed of being a record dealer) and we eventually wanted to get involved in this adventure. Eight days later we made a first visit to end up today with the takeover!
Are you Madonna fans yourselves?
We are five in this new adventure, myself (editor’s note: Nicolas) Jerome, Clement, Christopher and Charles. We are all five Madonna fans, but not only, we all have a particular sensitivity for one or more other artists, Cher, Michael Jackson, Mylène Farmer…. In short, we know and live like our future customers, the fan attitude in everyday life!
Will you keep specializing in selling rare memorabilia?
It is obviously one of the major assets of the store, to propose records, books, magazines but also rare and collectors items. Thanks to our knowledge of the musical world, we will propose rare objects, signed vinyls and other rare objects!
Will you still be open to any possible Madonna related events in the future in the shop?
As far as we can, we will be associated with all the events that are related to Madonna in any way. And of course, fans from all over the world will always be welcome when they come to the capital.
Were you a loyal customer of Lucky Records before?
Yes, all of us regularly went to see the new releases on the shelves at Lucky Records and bought rare items. Personally, I bought several vinyls (including a “Like A Prayer” that you can’t find anywhere else) as well as all the concerts on DVD!
Have you ever seen Madonna perform live?
I personally had the chance to attend all the tours from “Virgin Tour” to “Rebel Heart Tour”! The “Virgin Tour” was a real breakthrough for me, because at that time she was already a real phenomenon in the United States, while in Europe, and more particularly in France, Madonna was “only” the singer of a hit “Holiday”. I had a real slap in the face that night at Madison Square Garden and I understood why there was such a craze around her! Unfortunately, I couldn’t see the “Madame X Tour” because the concert I should have attended was one of those cancelled in the series of Parisian concerts at the Grand Rex….
We don’t mean to pry but what kind of work did you do before? Can you tell us more about this?
I mainly worked at Warner and WEA France for eighteen years. I was in charge of the promotion of different artists, and I took care of Madonna from the “Evita” period to “Confessions On The Dancefloor”. Then it was Jerome (one of the five of the new LR team) who took care of her until her last album with Warner (“Hard Candy”).
Will you also be running the online store as well as the social media of the shop?
We will continue to develop the “social media” part of the store. It is essential today, these modes of communication are essential, it will allow us to be closer to the fans to communicate and exchange. In a second step, we will work on the website to make it even more intuitive and easy to use.
What’s going to be the biggest change of the shop as opposed to how we grew up with it?
The store will be closed from June 27 to July 10, 2021, in order to facilitate the transition between the original team and the new one. We will take this opportunity to do some work in the store! Mainly to modify the general layout (and to make sure we get some space back to offer even more items!). There will also be some other surprises, but you’ll have to come and see us to “rediscover” the store.
Anything you would like to share with the Madonna fans reading this interview?
I want to reassure the fans, we all come from the music business, whether it’s a record company or a tour manager, we are passionate and we know the fan attitude, so I think everything will be fine between us and the fans. We are all one big family!
Many thanks to Nicolas, Jerôme, Clement, Christopher and Charles, the new owners of Lucky Records.