In rotation: 3/1/18

San Mateo’s best-kept secret, Vinyl Solution Records still grooving after 34 years: Hidden away on San Mateo’s West 25th Avenue, Vinyl Solution Records reveals inside musical memories from various eras. The shop’s owner has a goal, to bring “a wide selection of music to his customers and to make it affordable for their own investments.” And he does. For more than 34 years, Tommy Toonz curates a selection of vinyl, CDs, posters and other assorted music memorabilia. Toonz admits he loved music growing up, but never thought that he’d be selling it to people versus being only a customer himself. “All my life I’ve been a big music fan and I’ve never seen this as my biggest goal,” Toonz said.

Soul music plays on at DJ’s Record Shop: Jerry “DJ” West figures the half-century he’s spent running a used record store goes back to growing up in Blackshear, Ga., where he would tune in at night as disc jockey John R., a white guy many people thought was black, spun rhythm and blues all the way from Nashville, Tenn. In tiny Blackshear, that soul music was like a message from the bigger world, and it was one you did not want to miss. If you were out and about, you found John R.’s WLAC show on your transistor radio, which you stuck in your front pocket with the antennae sticking up out of it. If you were home, your father put John R. on the radio, and everyone in the house went to sleep to the music. Everywhere you went in Blackshear, it was playing. And more than five decades later, soul music is still playing inside DJ’s Record Shop, at the corner of Edison and McDuff avenues — all day long, every day but Sunday.

Vinyl prices spike along with popularity: Collectors and DJ’s never stopped loving it, but it wasn’t all that long ago that vinyl music was at death’s door as a format. That isn’t true any longer: vinyl is experiencing a major renaissance. And its popularity isn’t the only thing going up — prices are on the way up too. While some albums cost between $20 and $30, you won’t have to look hard to find vinyl that costs $50, $60 or even more than $100. “Sticker shock is real,” said Greg Tonn, owner of Into the Music. Tonn has been in the vinyl music business for 30 years. He says prices from his suppliers have been on an upswing for the past five years. “To the point now that I’m cautioning the staff not to purchase items for stock in the store that have a price point beyond the mid-thirties. And even that’s fairly expensive.”

Music lovers opens vinyl record shop: Music lover Pete Bennett will be living the dream when he opens his own vinyl record shop in Devizes on Saturday. Mr Bennett, 55, has been running Vinyl Realm as an on-line business for seven years but he is delighted that he will now be able to meet his customers face to face at his shop in Long Street. He said: “It has always been my dream to have a shop. I have had a lot of support from Ian James from Light And Sound in Devizes and I have been selling records from his shop which has helped to build up the Vinyl Realm name.” His partner Jacki Bennett, who is assistant manager at the Air Ambulance shop in Devizes, will be working with him part-time.

Led Zeppelin to Issue Rare Mixes of ‘Rock and Roll,’ ‘Friends’: Record Store Day release will mark band’s 50th anniversary: In anticipation of their 50th anniversary, Led Zeppelin will issue a seven-inch containing previously unreleased mixes of “Rock and Roll” and “Friends” on Record Store Day, April 21st. The vinyl, a limited-edition pressing produced by Jimmy Page will be available only at independent music retailers. For the release, Page selected two rarities that didn’t make it onto the band’s comprehensive reissues four years ago. The first is the so-called “Sunset Sound Mix” of Led Zeppelin IV’s “Rock and Roll.” The only other Sunset Sound mixes to have been released are the version of “When the Levee Breaks” on the original release and a version of “Stairway to Heaven” on the reissue. The group has not teased how this version of “Rock and Roll” will sound different from the mix on IV.

Hachette Audio & Wax Audio Group Launch Vinyl Audiobook Series, Featuring Lin-Manuel Miranda, Jerry Garcia & More: The resurgence of vinyl continues, as Hachette Audio, an imprint of Hachette Book Group, and Wax Audio Group has announced a new series of vinyl + digital audiobook titles in 2018. The range will include releases read by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Jerry Garcia, Amanda Palmer and Steve Jones, among others. The series launches with David Foster Wallace’s This Is Water, which is available today (Feb. 27). “As we’ve all seen recently reported across major media, the dramatic and sustained rise of audiobooks continues, so there is no better time than now to expand our catalog with an audio format that has seen amazing resurgence with a greater dedication of retail space and online merchandising,” Anthony Goff, svp and publisher, Hachette Audio, says in a statement.

David Bowie Exhibit Details Exclusive Vinyl Releases, Rare Recordings, Silver vinyl seven-inch, live mini-LP will be available at expansive Brooklyn Museum exhibition: A selection of new, limited edition David Bowie vinyl records will be available at the Brooklyn Museum to mark the arrival of the exhibition, David Bowie Is, set to run March 2nd through July 15th. The limited edition releases include a seven-inch single of “Time,” “The Prettiest Star” and Live in Berlin (1978), an eight-track mini-LP featuring four previously unreleased recordings. The Brooklyn Museum will also stock a red vinyl version of iSelect, a compilation Bowie curated that has been available at previous David Bowie Is stops. The “Time” b/w “The Prettiest Star” single will be pressed on silver vinyl and features a rare picture sleeve. The Live in Berlin mini-LP will be pressed on orange vinyl and features recordings from Bowie’s concert at Deutschland Halle May 16th, 1978. Along with the four unreleased cuts, the record boasts four more songs that have only been released in the past six months.

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