If you’ve ever come into contact with a hipster, they probably tried to sell you on the “vinyl revival.” As much as their pretentious coffee roasts may piss you off, they’re actually onto something. In 2016, vinyl record sales hit a new high with 13.1 million albums sold across the US. According to Billboard.com, that’s up 10 percent from 2015. It’s now 2017 and vinyl is cool, and not in an ironic way.
Taking place every April, Record Store Day is celebrating its 10th anniversary on Saturday the 22nd, and celebrating the remarkable resurgence of vinyl in the latter half of the decade. It originally started to help out struggling independent record stores around the world, but now celebrates the fully-grown vinyl lifestyle.
Record Store Day isn’t just about vinyl nerds shuffling around dusty old music shops with more enthusiasm than usual. Well, not entirely at least. It will be part celebration and part competition with all sorts of eccentric characters elbowing each other away from the biggest bargains while bonding in these temples of alternative culture. Without further introduction, here’s Jerk’s guide to Record Store Day. Rock on.
Record Store day promises over 500 exclusive releases. With confirmed records from Bastille, Iggy Pop, The Cure and a re-release of the Space Jam soundtrack, RSD2k17 could be the biggest and best yet. Many albums being pressed specifically for the event honor the dearly departed—including a tribute to Leonard Cohen, a seven–inch picture disc from Prince, and a David Bowie box set. Other live albums pay tribute to Lou Reed, Uriah Heep, The Doors, Santana, the Grateful Dead, Sting, Bill Evans and Jimi Hendrix. Releases are a limited run, and record store owners don’t always receive as much as they ordered, so if you’re looking to get your hands on something specific, push through your hangover and hit up your local record store on the early side.
No matter where you are, if you can find a record store, you can celebrate Record Store Day. As for Syracuse, The Sound Garden in Armory Square is a pledged participant. They’re opening earlier than usual (9 a.m.) and setting up a tent downtown where you can peruse racks of new records while nodding your head to a live DJ. Books and Melodies, though strictly a used record seller, is in on the festivities, too. Music lovers are encouraged to come by for live acoustic sets and a collection of $2 records – perfect for anyone using RSD as a reason to pick up a hobby that isn’t drug-related…or is it?
Manbun optional, definitely not suggested.
While music players like the iPod have come and gone, record players are still around despite the quality of music nowadays being reduced to an mp3. Whether you’re an experienced collector, bargain junkie or vinyl newbie, Record Store Day is an event you don’t want to skip out on. For a list of all Record Store Day releases or participating stores, go towww.recordstoreday.com.