End of a Short but Successful Era, Mushroom Records Gives Up Sachets and Potpourri!!
If the last three years have shown me anything, it’s that the world likes to smoke. Mushroom Records (MR) has been a huge New Orleans contributor to the folks who get drug screened by their job, the court, etc. and cannot smoke marijuana.
The Mushroom had an incredible four years of revenue growth. The historic music/head shop, which has served the Tulane and New Orleans market since the 1970s, never experienced success like they did with botanical sachets and organic potpourris (SP). What made this side line turned main business unusual was how much change occurred in the field constantly over the few years it’s been around, and how much profit was built into the process.
A short history will help fill in the gaps. At the start of the enhanced SP era, there was a company comprised of New Orleans expatriates who left after Hurricane Katrina and started selling a product called Serenity Now. MR started selling this product, and it sold beyond belief! Within a few months, the owner of Mushroom Records had an old Tulane chemist friend on staff, who concocted his own version of what became SP 1.0. All of a sudden, MR’s business was growing by leaps and bounds. As the months went by, MR opened up a distribution arm to supply all the national and I guess international orders.
Then complaints came in from across the state, mostly about other products, and MR’s products got banned with all the rest by the Louisiana legislature, in all their great wisdom. They allow hard alcohol to be sold in half pint bottles for under $3, and these stores are almost on every street corner in town. This enables tons of drunks, but they ban sachets and potpourris.
MR moved their operation to Texas, hired a second chemist, and helped invent the gigantic 2. era. MR bought property in Texas when 2. began. This also sold hugely for MR, who changed a few key molecules on 1. and voila, 2. Before I forget, MR began labeling all their SP with the Dascents.com brand. That became their online brand as well, and the MR website sold a lot of SP 24/7/365. Once again, the LA legislature banned 2.0. Then the Texas Legislature banned SP, and Dascents.com moved from Texas to Florida.
MR started work in advance on 3.0, and the first few products MR sold were light weight. Within a month, stronger SP hit the market, and MP’s sales began to grow. It took a few months this time, but the biz grew exponentially the last few months and dragged the sales of the rest of the extremely large merchandise straight up also. Everything including vinyl was selling very well as the 3.0 ends in the next few days.
I’ve heard that the new owners of Dascents.com moved from Florida after the legislature banned the stuff. However, all great eras come to an end, and the SP era is now over. MR has sold the dascents brand, and entire SP biz. A sign outside the MR today said Thanks for the business, an era is over.
Surprisingly, MR’s own web site also closed down over a month ago. I interpreted this sign to mean they won’t be carrying SP anymore. What I think is going on is the owner of the MR has made enough dough on all three versions that he wants to retire with his big pile of money as opposed to his retirement outlook before SP. He can now retire a millionaire, as opposed to an average middle class retirement, where inflation might overcome his monthly allowance in 20 years. I’m very happy for this owner, who reacted to market conditions like a cat and moved into all areas of the business while the era lasted. He deserves all the success he enjoyed during the curious era of SP/NOLA.
I’m half sure MP will revert to what they were, with a slightly bigger biz