Tomorrow is Record Store Day!
As the music industry struggles to remain afloat amidst declining album sales, while iTunes song sales continue to climb, independent music retailers, musicians and artists from across North America and the UK, have banded together to create Record Store Day -- a celebration of the local music stores that once carried all your favourite records and helped to introduce you to music that, before the ubiquity of mp3s, couldn't otherwise be found.
On April 19th, support your local record shop and go buy a CD -- or a newly released, limited edition, vinyl 7"-- from your favourite indie band du jour.
Who knows? You might even run into one of your favourite artists working the cash register.
North American Participants:
Independentmusic retailers across North America say they've enlisted the help ofbig-name acts such as Metallica and Steve Earle to mark Record StoreDay.
The retailers, who have been struggling in recent years due to internetdownloading, hatched a plan to mark the day next Saturday (April 19).
On that day, participating record stores will be handing out freepromotional CDs, vinyl albums, videos and other treats, as well ashosting live in-store performances.
Musiciansof all stripes say they support the campaign, from the likes of PaulMcCartney — "There's nothing as glamorous to me as a record store" — tohard rocker Henry Rollins: "I have watched independent record storesevaporate all over America and Europe. That's why I go into as many asI can and buy records whenever possible. If we lose the independentrecord store, we lose big."
The sheer number of artists participating in Record Store Day-- including Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks, and Vampire Weekend,to name just a few-- almost makes all these special events andexclusive releases seem a little less than extraordinary, like weshould expect such goodies to come our way every day. That's not true,of course (record stores are an endangered species!), which means theannouncement of four more participating bands still has us giddy.
The April 19 celebration of independent music retail now includes therelease of exclusive limited edition 7"s by Built to Spill, R.E.M.,Death Cab for Cutie, and the Black Keys.
April 19 has been designated Record Store Day. (That’s Record Shop Day if you’re British.) An international awareness-raising campaign to flag up the unique allure of your local record shop, the idea is to whisk up a heady cocktail of publicity and instore entertainment, providing a reason to truck on down to your local indie and lose a couple of quid on that copy of Neu! ’75 you’ve been promising yourself.
So far, Rough Trade East have announced appearances by Veils, The Metros, Jason Molina, Eugene McGuinness, Make Model, Billy Bragg, Can’s Irmin Schmidt and more. Piccadilly in Manchester promise an in-store performance by Jamie Hince’s The Kills, and Avalanche in Edinburgh will host hotly tipped trio St Jude’s Infirmary, Radio One’s Vic Galloway “on the decks”, and more surprises in store (as it were). Stay tuned for more attractions at these and other participating stores.
Record Store Day will also mark the official launch of the Coalition Of UK Indie Stores, an alliance of (initially) 15 UK shops. The idea is to co-ordinate activity up and down the country and fight a corner for the beleaguered music retailer.