Demolition reduces Coral Gables music landmark Spec’s to rubble

05/20/2013 6:31 PM

05/23/2013 3:09 PM

The Wrecking Crew was a famed Los Angeles collective of studio musicians who backed everyone from Simon & Garfunkel to the Beach Boys in the 1960s, and the Carpenters to the Captain & Tennille in the 1970s.

Spec’s Records & Tapes, a fixture on U.S. 1 for six decades, certainly sold thousands of albums over the years featuring those players. But after closing its doors for good in February, Spec’s met another wrecking crew over the weekend. Demolition finally began on the beloved property last week.

The late Martin “Mike” Spector first opened his store in 1948, when U.S. 1 was a two-lane road. The original store was a few blocks south on the highway in South Miami and is now an Einstein’s bagel spot. The flagship location, now reduced to rubble, opened in 1953 in Coral Gables and was run for decades by the Spector family before it was sold in 1998 to Camelot Music Group, later acquired by Trans World Entertainment Corp.

In its heyday, the chain expanded to some 80 stores in Florida and Puerto Rico and lived through the bobby-sox era, Beatlemania, disco, punk, hip hop/rap, grunge and electronic dance music. But Spec’s ultimately could not compete with format changes that make buying music a mouse-click away.

Chase Bank plans to move onto the property, next door to Swensen’s restaurant, later this year.

Follow @HowardCohen on Twitter.

Join the Discussion

Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Terms of Service