TVD Washington, DC

The Best of TVD’s Play Something Good with John Foster

TVD’s Play Something Good returns in September with all new—and all good—episodes. —Ed.

The Vinyl District’s Play Something Good is a weekly radio show broadcast from Washington, DC. Featuring a mix of songs from today to the 00s/90s/80s/70s/60s and giving you liberal doses of indie, psych, dub, post punk, americana, shoegaze, and a few genres we haven’t even thought up clever names for just yet. The only rule is that the music has to be good. Pretty simple.

Hosted by John Foster, world-renowned designer and author (and occasional record label A+R man), don’t be surprised to hear quick excursions and interviews on album packaging, food, books, and general nonsense about the music industry, as he gets you from Jamie xx to Liquid Liquid and from Courtney Barnett to The Replacements. The only thing you can be sure of is that he will never ever play Mac DeMarco. Never. Ever.

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The TVD Storefront

Graded on a Curve:
Rick Deitrick, Gentle Wilderness and River
Sun River Moon

Rick Deitrick is yet another in the recent wave of solo guitar rediscoveries, or better put, for nearly all of us just plain old discoveries. In Deitrick’s case the sounds are far less American Primitive and, as the titles of his two LPs, Gentle Wilderness and River Sun River Moon make clear, much closer to a log cabin in the mountains, and there is nothing wrong with that. Tranquil without becoming a sedative, both records are out on vinyl August 25 through Tompkins Square.

It’s a familiar story; back in 1978, Rick Deitrick had Gentle Wilderness pressed in a 500-copy edition for his own Niodrara Records, subsequently selling copies at performances and through retailers that would buy them, but he also gave some to libraries and left a few in the wilderness, “so people would find them,” hopefully before it rained.

There is undoubtedly a handful of folks who remember Deitrick from the original release of that LP; his playing makes this clear. But for a whole lot more, knowledge was gained through the inclusion of the Gentle Wilderness track “Missy Christa” on the Brooks Rice and Michael Klausman-compiled entry in Tompkins Square’s long running Guitar Soli series.

Imaginational Anthem 8: The Private Press gathered a slew of worthy fingerpicking previously heard only by the fortunate few or the wildly persistent. Due to the high quality of the prior Imaginational Anthem volumes and of solo guitar in general, The Private Press wasn’t a jaw-dropper, but it did open the ears to an unexpected amount of formerly obscure high-quality players in a field that was once, at least from this writer’s perspective, not especially deep.

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A morning mix of news for the vinyl inclined

In rotation: 8/23/17

Denver – Record Venues You Simply Have To Visit: Denver is the largest town in the Colorado federal state, and it houses approximately 600 thousand citizens. Now, these people definitely know how to party – their botanic gardens are exceptionally beautiful, Colorado’s Ski Country is always brimming with life, and the Cherry Creek State Park is a wonderful place to visit. As for the record shops, Denver is a home of some of the most beautiful record venues in all of the USA. We’ve compiled a list of the top shops you simply have to visit

Record store day’s every day for me’ – collector opens independent vinyl-only store in Darlington: Record store day is now every day for a man who turned his hobby into a dream by opening Darlington’s only independent vinyl shop. Since opening Saxosoul Records just three weeks ago, music fan Darren Carr has welcomed hundreds of kindred spirits, with people of all ages flocking to rifle through his wares. More than 15 years ago, Mr Carr began “wheeling and dealing” in records when another seller refused to hand over the vinyl he wanted, insisting instead that Mr Carr take a collection of 4,000 soul records off his hands. The Darlington man went on to trade at record fairs throughout the country before deciding to take the plunge and open his own shop.

Record store to hold all-day music event in memory of popular carer: An acoustic fundraiser will be held in memory of a popular Winsford carer. On Saturday, August 26, The Electric Church will be hosting the all-day music event involving 12 bands to raise money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. The event will be held in memory of Chloe Richardson who started the Disabled Disco at the St Luke’s Barton Stadium but died from cystic fibrosis in May. Becky Benson, cousin of Chloe and event organiser, said: “I feel it’s right to give something back. “The Electric Church is the perfect place for the event. It’s got a great atmosphere and is very inviting for people who just want to chill out.”

Herald Archive: A record memory for the folk of Glasgow’s south side: Now that’s what I call a record store – racks of records, album and EP covers stuck up the walls, and even guitars for sale in case you want to try your hand at forming your own band. For readers from Glasgow’s south side, it is probably somewhere they went to years ago. It is Gloria’s Record Bar on Battlefield Road in December, 1971. I’ve had a look at the charts for that week and I swear I could sing almost every chorus. The Who and Deep Purple are there. Rod Stewart with Maggie May – who can forget Ray Jackson’s mandolin solo?

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TVD San Francisco

TVD Live Shots: Dropkick Murphys, Rancid, The Selecter, Kevin Seconds at the Greek Theatre, 8/20

Rancid and Dropkick Murphys are on the road together with their “From Boston to Berkeley Tour” which ironically neither started in Boston nor will end in Berkeley. But that’s neither here nor there, because Sunday night at Berkeley’s Greek Theatre made for a truly epic evening of music.

With school just starting at the University, the frat bros where partying hard a mere few blocks from where Kevin Seconds (of 7 Seconds fame) kicked things off to the gathering crowd with an acoustic set. In spite of decades in punk rock, Kevin still has an amazing voice that soared over the chattering crowd. It takes balls to stand up in front of a few thousand people with only a mic and a guitar and Kevin absolutely nailed it, ending the short and sweet set with a sing-along of 7 Seconds’ “Leave a Light On.”

Next up, 2-Tone ska veterans The Selecter who stepped on the tour mid-way through. With a black curtain draped across most of the stage, the band made maximum use of what was left for them at the edge of the stage, their energy infectious. And while it was only 6PM, the general admission pit was packed and folks seemed to have had enough time to get their drink on because they were clearly ready to dance. As a special surprise, Lynval Golding from The Specials joined them on stage to close out the set.

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The TVD Storefront

TVD Radar: For the
Sake of Heaviness: The History of Metal Blade Records
in stores 8/29

VIA PRESS RELEASE | On August 29th, Metal Blade Records and BMG will release For the Sake of Heaviness: The History of Metal Blade Records—written by label founder and CEO Brian Slagel with Mark Eglinton, and featuring a foreword by Metallica’s Lars Ulrich. Celebrating the storied label’s 35th anniversary, For the Sake of Heaviness is an inside look at how Slagel built Metal Blade from a one-man operation in his mom’s non-air-conditioned garage to the preeminent international home of heavy music that it is today. Pre-order here.

For the Sake of Heaviness pulls back the curtain to reveal the definitive look at how Metal Blade began, what they’ve accomplished, and where they’re going. Slagel reveals the early advice he gave that helped guide Motley Crue’s career; how he helped Metallica replace their bassist—twice; his detailed work on Thin Lizzy and Alice Cooper re-issues; his behind-the-scenes role in the careers of Slayer, GWAR, Mother Love Bone, Alice in Chains, Faith No More, Goo Goo Dolls, and Lamb of God; and his unlikely ventures with kindred metal heads—from hockey star Ken Baumgartner, to celebrity chef Chris Santos, to The Howard Stern Show’s Richard Christy, to comedians Jim Florentine, Don Jamieson, and Jim Breuer.

On September 19th at 6PM, Slagel will appear for a book panel and signing at Rough Trade in NYC alongside Trevor Strnad (The Black Dahlia Murder), Richard Christy (Charred Walls of the Damned and The Howard Stern Show radio personality), and Jim Florentine (Stand-up Comedian and TV personality for That Metal Show). Hosted by Don Jamieson (Stand-up Comedian and TV personality for That Metal Show), please visit roughtrade.com/events for more details.

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The TVD Storefront

Dan Miraldi,
The TVD First Date

“In third grade, I became a vinyl collector.”

“It was one of the days when I convinced my mother to let me stay home, because I technically had a fever (probably around 98.7 degrees). She was organizing part of the basement when she called me to her side and presented me with a green and tan cardboard case. The container had a picture of a man and woman dancing on a record. A few months earlier, I started showing interest in the music of the Beatles and Elvis Presley. She thought I might enjoy the contents of the case.

She was right. Inside was the collection of 45s she purchased when she was growing up. Without much ceremony, she told me I could have them! I began flipping through the discs. I was thrilled to find in her collection a copy of an Elvis Presley EP featuring songs from his film Viva Las Vegas as well as a slew of Motown singles and a copy of Steppenwolf’s “Born To Be Wild.” My mother then showed me how to operate the basement turntable. It was one of those players where you could stack the 45s you wanted to play and they would drop down on top of each other once the record before it was finished. After that day, part of my after school routine often was going down the basement, stacking those 45s on the record player. and having my own private dance party.

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TVD UK

UK Artist of the Week: Laura Elvin

Today we offer someone quite unique for our Artist of The Week; London-based Laura Elvin creates idiosyncratic alt-pop like nothing we’ve heard in a long time, and her latest single “Wonder” will leave you empowered—as well as perhaps slightly bewildered.

“Wonder” is performed on a custom-built music box, enabling Laura to create her own distinctive sound from the off-set. The twinkling notes playing in the background combined with Elvin’s powerful lead vocal somehow fit together wonderfully despite the obvious contrast. Fans of Kate Bush or Regina Spektor’s charismatic vocal styles will find similarities certainly, however Laura is definitely her own entity and we’re excited to see and hear what she’ll do next.

Laura is a fully autonomous artist and producer. Born in Camden and introduced to classical music by her family, Laura then went on to fully develop her love of jazz, classical pop, and rock music. After spending a number of years living on a sustainable farm, Elvin is now back in London ready to tackle the live circuit once again.

“Wonder” arrives in stores on 15th September 2017.

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The TVD Storefront

Graded on a Curve:
Sweet as Broken Dates: Lost Somali Tapes from the Horn of Africa

An absolute gem of archival diligence, Sweet as Broken Dates: Lost Somali Tapes from the Horn of Africa saw compilers Vik Sohonie, Nicolas Sheikholeslami and their team traveling to Mogadishu, Hargeisa, and Djibouti, and additionally to various locales in Europe, the USA, and the Middle East to connect with the Somali diaspora, all with the goal of unveiling part of what writer and booklet contributor Maxamed Daahir Afrax deems the “golden era of Somali theatrical arts, including music.” The sounds are stylistically varied, appealingly feminist, and constantly satisfying; it’s out August 25 on double vinyl, compact disc, and digital through Ostinato Records.

The use of the term underground in relation to art is of course figurative, often meaning subversive or dissident, but just as frequently simply standing as the opposite of popular, in that its audience, or perhaps better said those cognizant of said art’s existence, is few. However, the music collected on Sweet as Broken Dates gives underground a literal spin.

In 1998, at the outbreak of civil war, authoritarian ruler Siad Barre was set to bomb communication hub Radio Hargeisa in the northern region of the country (known today as Somaliland) so to effectively cripple organized resistance. A few with access to the station’s archives, which held over half a century of Somali music, managed to transplant the many thousands of tapes to neighboring Djibouti and Ethiopia, where they were buried deep under the ground as a safeguard against airstrikes.

Knowledge of this action and the recent excavation of the tapes comes courtesy of Ostinato’s press release, its background substantially expanded upon in the set’s liner essays and interviews with some of the key musicians involved. But even shorn of the clarity these notes bring, a single listen solidifies the contents as distinct from assorted more prominent contemporaneous African styles, in large part due to geography, with the Somali horn of Africa’s history as a trade center opening it up to a variety of cultures including the Arabian Peninsula, Persia, India, Southeast Asia, and even China.

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A morning mix of news for the vinyl inclined

In rotation: 8/22/17

A record store is opening inside Bristol music venue The Exchange: Specialist Subject Records, previously based in Exeter, is opening a record store inside the first floor of The Exchange this weekend. “(It will be) run as will be ran as a proper punk / hardcore / indie / ‘guitar music’ record shop as well as somewhere for us to carry out the day to day label stuff,” says Specialist Subject Records. The opening follows news earlier in month that Rise Music store will be turned into a Rough Trade at the end of the summer. The store is hosting an opening party Saturday 26th August with live performances from WOAHNOWS, Austeros (solo) and special guests to celebrate their launch.

Long Island’s record stores see boost from vinyl’s resurgence: Record Stop, a family-owned business that Bruce Berg opened in Ronkonkoma more than 40 years ago, initially flourished from the popularity of vinyl, says Jeff Berg, Bruce’s son, who opened the family’s second store in Patchogue with a grand opening Aug. 5…Joseph Ostermeier, who owns Infinity Records in Massapequa Park, says while most of the record stores of his childhood are long gone, his store and many others on Long Island are functioning at full force — in response to the resurgence of vinyl records.

Record Theatre announces last day of operation: After almost 42 years, a beloved Buffalo business has announced its final day of operation. Record Theatre’s last day will be Sunday, August 27, the store announced Friday. An online auction is being planned for various remaining store items. Record Theatre was once called the “World’s Largest Record Store.” It opened in 1976 at 1800 Main Street. The business’s owner, Leonard Silver, died in March at the age of 90. In its glory days, there were 21 operating Record Theatre stores, located in Cleveland, Cincinnati, Baltimore, Rochester, Syracuse and Buffalo.

Sandpoint record shop celebrates vinyl revival: After more than 30 years of being swept ever closer to the dustbin of history, vinyl is cool again. And Kris Kurrus has been waiting patiently on the sidelines for a moment just such as this. His new hole-in-the-wall shop, 7B Grooves, is all about vinyl and the turntables that bring it to life. According to the owner, he has about 2,000 albums displayed in record bins, with another 4,000 in the adjacent stockroom and a total collection of approximately 20,000 titles stored off-site, all waiting to be cleaned, graded and, in time, rotated into the store for sale.

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The TVD Storefront

TVD Radar: Jan & Dean’s never-before-released Filet of Soul in stores 9/1

VIA PRESS RELEASE | In 1965, Jan (Berry) & Dean (Torrence), the “California sound” pop-duo from Los Angeles, had outgrown their small independent record company and were striving to obtain more control over their career, including adding more comedy to their act.

Having charted five Top 10 records in the past two years (including the anthem defining surf classic “Surf City”), the two were now reaching for the silver screen and more. They would soon begin work on their own movie (the uncompleted Easy Come, Easy Go), and television show, to be produced by William Asher (Bewitched). But they owed the label one more record and really didn’t want to waste any of the “good material” on that company.

Enter the idea of a live album. Unfortunately the suits at the label were not overly enthused, as Jan & Dean had previously released one in early ’65. So the duo, who had been honing their wise-ass shtick since high school, delivered Filet of Soul, a “live” LP with comedy. The execs were appalled and rejected it.

Sadly, on April 12, 1966, Jan Berry was involved in a tragic automobile accident that more or less derailed the duo’s career. He was miraculously alive but in a coma. Three weeks after the accident, the label saw fit to exploit the Jan & Dean story all over again and deconstructed the original version into another live album titled Filet of Soul — A “Live” One.

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