RI Gears Up for Record Store Day

recordstoredayApril 21 is Record Store Day (RSD), a celebration of the nearly 1,400 independently owned record stores in the US, and thousands more internationally. Since 2007, RSD’s exclusive releases have spurred music nerds everywhere to get out there and spend their hard-earned green on the black circle, and this year will be no different.

RSD’s popularity mirrors a renewed interest in physical music media. In January, Billboard reported that 2017 was the 12th straight year of growth in vinyl album sales, and a Nielsen Music-era record high for sales.

Record store day releases aren’t just for the ultra-diehards who need to hear John and Paul dicking around in the studio in between takes. From multi-lps box sets to EPs, RSD’s hundreds of exclusive releases will have something for every music fan.

If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you already know the deal, so let’s get to the details. The list of events and releases is way too expansive to print, but some notable releases include:

The vinyl LP release of Car Seat Headrest’s Twin Fantasy (Mirror To Mirror), which is a reworking of a 2011 Bandcamp release.

An expanded 5-LP edition of Johnny Cash’s classic At Folsom Prison, including songs from June Carter and Carl Perkins, and unreleased recordings of Cash rehearsing for the show the previous night.

A recording of Nas: Live at the Kennedy center, a performance of his debut, Illmatic, with the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center four years ago, to mark the album’s 20th anniversary.

Exclusive vinyl reissue of The Sundays’ debut album Reading, Writing and Arithmetic (you may remember the track “Here’s Where The Story Ends”).

Also look forward to exclusive releases from David Bowie, Robert Glasper, The National and Frank Zappa.

Of course, our local purveyors will be pulling out all the stops. A few Rhode Island record shops reported what they have going on:

In Your Ear (Warren) will have live bands and DJs, free Sub Pop swag, $1 CDs and free refreshments courtesy of ‘Gansett.

Olympic Records (Wickenden St, PVD) has limited copies of the Arcade Fire’s first EP (released before Funeral), which has never been available on vinyl.

Looney Tunes (Wakefield) is featuring a few cassette tape reissues, including AC/DC Back in Black and Wu Tang Clan’s debut Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), of which only 2,500 were issued nationwide. They also stock lots of home audio gear on which to enjoy your new music.

Also check out Round Again Records, Symposium Books, Analog Underground and Armageddon Shop in PVD; Flashback Vintage Emporium in Warren; Barrington Books and Time Capsule in Cranston; and Vinyl Guru in Newport.

There’s plenty of evidence that capitalism is a failing system that is destroying our democracy, but when it involves going out and supporting your local shop on Record Store Day, it’s not all that bad.

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