Artists, stores and communities are putting together all kinds of packages and treats for this year's Independent Record Store Day, from limited pressings of coloured 12" Vinyl, to CDs of live shows, to special edition T-shirts, to full-on in-store parties and more.
I've spelled out how I feel about Saving the Record Store; I truly love them. And as the trailer above and forthcoming film shows, they have had a rough time in this new digital-driven world. They are fighting back, with various plans of attack, and with varying results.
Features such as the (kinda) recent Lost My Dog 'Connect' event at Swag Records in London are an interesting take, using independent artists and labels to unite and draw in a switched on crowd that want to meet, network and just chill with some of the music creators, distributors, retailers and generally be a supportive part of the music scene.
Here in Chicago, Gramaphone Records have tried to expand their vinyl junkie customer base by reaching out directly to independent artists on the rise and trying to work a deal for them to sell CDs of their digital work in the store. They also have an amazing collection of hard to find, highly desirable vinyl from the past 4 decades and a good website alongside, attracting attention of online buyers from across the globe. Also worth noting - they have announced that they are discounting all vinyl by $2 on Independent Record Store Day - a decent saving, so that you can now either buy six records for the normal price of five, or you can buy Michael a much deserved beer next time you see him ;)
One way that an individual can support many stores is to give them exclusive content. "I Need That Record! The Death (or Possible Survival) of the Independent Record Store” by guerilla filmmaker Brendan Toller features interviews with Thurston Moore, Ian MacKaye, Noam Chomksy, Mike Watt, Lenny Kaye and others. The film will be offered be offered exclusively via indie record stores for 90 days starting on Independent Record Store Day, this Saturday April 17th. Check the trailer here.
Show your support and go and buy something this weekend. I make it a point to try and stop by a local store whenever I travel, and so I personally recommend the following places of worship...
http://www.gramaphonerecords.com/ - CHICAGO, USA
http://www.amoeba.com/ - HOLLYWOOD / SAN FRAN / BERKLEY, USA
http://www.cheapodiscs.com/ - MINNEAPOLIS, USA
http://www.halcyontheshop.com/ - NEW YORK, USA
http://www.thisisape.com/ - BRIGHTON, UK
http://www.crazybeat.co.uk/ - ESSEX, UK
http://www.roughtrade.com/ - LONDON, UK
http://www.puregroove.co.uk/ - LONDON, UK
http://www.phonicarecords.com/ - LONDON, UK
http://www.swagrecords.biz - LONDON, UK
http://www.bm-soho.com/ - LONDON, UK
http://www.piccadillyrecords.com/shop/index.php - MANCHESTER, UK
http://www.groove-store.com/ - PARIS, FRANCE
...but I've not travelled the entire world (yet)... so for a full list of participating stores...
in the USA, go to http://www.recordstoreday.com/Venues
and for the INTERNATIONAL list go to http://www.recordstoreday.com/Venues?country=select
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