In rotation: 4/29/19

Weekly Vinyl Record Sales Surge to 827,000 Following Record Store Day — a Brand-New ‘Record’: A Nielsen Music report says Record Store Day drove record-breaking vinyl sales, with more than 827,000 sold that week. Nielsen Music says this year’s Record Store Day — held on April 13th — was the third-largest sales week for vinyl albums since 1991 (the first year the company started publishing stats). More than 827,000 vinyl records were sold during the past week, with 673,000 coming from independent record stores. The sales total beats the previous high set by 2018’s Record Store Day week at 533,000. Seeing the trend here? Nielsen Music estimates that it was the biggest week ever for vinyl at independent stores.

Isle of Wight, UK | New record shop opens its doors in Newport: A new record shop on the Isle of Wight will aim to get local bands back into the groove when it opens its doors for the first time today (Saturday April 27). AAA Records will sell new and secondhand vinyl, CDs, t-shirts and vintage memorabilia from its racks in Scarrots Lane, Newport. Owners Alex Lee and Andy Barding said a top priority for the shop will be showcasing island talent. Andy, from Cowes, said: “We will be stocking the debut Plastic Mermaids album and releases by other Isle of Wight artists. “There is so much great music just under the radar on the island, and we want to make all that available to our customers. AAA Records is the first full-time new-and-used music shop to trade on the Island for some years. Another, unconnected, Scarrots Lane shop, which sold new releases only, has recently ceased trading.

Bayville, NJ | New record store opening in Bayville this weekend: Dust off your record player because Vinyl Records are alive and well. A brand new record store called “The Vinyl Dinosaur” opens in Bayville at 521 Atlantic City Boulevard on Saturday (4/27) at 11a. The store will feature records, cd’s, 8-tracks, cassettes, VHS tapes and more. According to The Patch: The Vinyl Dinosaur includes plenty of variety: from the easy listening of Abba and Barbra Streisand to the jagged riffs of Alice Cooper and Aerosmith to the zany Frank Zappa to jazz, soul, R&B, country and big band. Baeli says one day he might be able to fit his classical collection too. Customers can also bring their collections for potential trade-ins. But currently, the unopened store is full, and Baeli’s mostly looking for rarities and it depends on their condition.

Dundee, SCT | Goodbye Assai? Broughty Ferry record store announces relocation to new Dundee venue: A popular record shop in Broughty Ferry has revealed plans to close and relocate elsewhere in the city. Assai Records announced the move on Facebook with a picture of a “To let” sign on the premises and said: “After four amazing years in King Street, Broughty Ferry – it’s time to move. “We will be moving to new larger premises in the summer with more details coming soon.” It has not yet been confirmed where the business plans to relocate. Shop manager Matthew Marra said: “I can confirm we are moving premises. But it is very much up in the air where we are moving to as we are still figuring out logistics.” Since moving to the Ferry, the store – which also has a branch in Edinburgh – has become a popular haunt for vinyl lovers as well as regularly hosting live events.

Victoria, TX | End of Victoria record shop marks beginning for ailing father, expecting daughter: Sealed in their cellophane and flashy paper sleeves, Ramona Flores’ inheritance lay all around her in the dim, dusty shop. “They have a scent like old books do,” said Ramona, a 28-year-old native Victoria resident, adding, “If you pay attention to good record care – keep them in their sleeves and don’t stack them on each other and keep them in a cool, dry place – they can last for years and years and years and play perfectly.” Inside the Midnite Rambler, a Victoria record shop that is also her 72-year-old father Ruben Flores’ namesake, row after row of vintage vinyls bring wonder and nostalgia to the occasional visitor who stumbles inside. But after years – 33⅓ by her father’s estimation – the small shop at 503 E. North St. that has become a Victoria staple is months away from shuttering its doors for good

Lynchburg, VA | Speakertree Records opens new café in Lynchburg: Speakertree Café opened its own coffee shop last Friday, which sells coffee in collaboration with local and national bands and artists. The new café, Backline Coffee, is located at 901 Jefferson St. inside the record store and is a “music-drawn coffee brand,” owner Blake Gederberg said. “The vision was what if we created a product that was music-driven and music-centric and that was also a consumer product?” he said. “Customers can buy into our vision and love what we’re doing and decide consciously to consume our product and know a band is benefiting from it.” The bands who have collaborated with the café, which will have coffee brewed by Forest-based Third Wave Coffee, will receive a portion of the proceeds.

Phillipsburg, NJ | ‘Record’ sales for store in the P’Burg Mall: There’s a local store inside Philipsburg mall that’s not only surviving, but thriving. We hear a lot about the struggles of the Phillipsburg mall, so it seems odd to find a store there that’s doing so well. “Every year it gets better and better,” said Stephanie Nagy, owner of Spin Me Round Records. “I have 3,500 square feet, it’s been about four years and we’re doing fantastic,” she said. “Records are a lot more permanent than digital media. You download something, you don’t own it.” She attributes a lot of her success to leveraging social media. “I think a lot of it has to do with social media. We do a video every night for YouTube, Instagram, we have an email list. It’s so easy now to connect with customers and let them know what’s going on and what you’re doing,” Nagy said. And on record store day, you can see that in action. The line wrapped around the mall.

Gainesville, GA | Radio host wants you to come ‘talk music’ at his Flowery Branch record store: After turning 60, Moe Lyons decided it was time to do something for himself. During the past couple of days, Lyons has packed a little store at 5607 Main St. in Flowery Branch with thousands of used vinyl records. All of the store’s stock comes from Lyons’ personal collection. He said he spent decades collecting records in anticipation of his future retirement business. Dubbed Moe’s Record Shop, the store will officially open at 10 a.m. on Thursday, April 25. “I’ve been wanting to open a record store for forever,” Lyons said. “All of them (records) will be hard to part with, but I hope people come in and discover new stuff they’ve never discovered before.” Lyons said he spent 17 years working in the music retail industry, then spent another 17 years as the water treatment operator for the City of Gainesville. He retired from the city job in December 2018. In 2004 he started holding shows on 89.1 WBCX Gainesville, Brenau’s student radio station. He currently hosts a jazz fusion show Saturday nights and plays contemporary jazz music on Fridays. Although he leans toward jazz with the shows, Lyons’ musical tastes span across most genres and decades.

St. Petersburg, FL | Local writer transforms vintage VW bus into a mobile record shop: Arielle Stevenson grew up working on Volkswagen vehicles. Buses, Bugs, you name it, her grandfather and father would bring home old VWs to restore and resell, and they put her to work alongside them even when she was a child. “We were always under the hood of a car growing up, doing custom VW restoration,” she said. “We were always tinkering with something and flipping it. My braces were paid off by flipping a Volkswagen.”…In need of work, she turned to her old passion for Volkswagens for inspiration. She’d recently bought back a VW bus from an ex-boyfriend. They’d originally purchased the vehicle together. “I lost it in the break-up, and it sat and rotted until I could afford to buy it back,” Stevenson said. She and her father got to work restoring it, making up for lost time. It had been four years since she last worked on the bus, and its condition had deteriorated since then. With no job and rent due soon, she came up with a plan: she’d run a mobile record shop out of her VW bus.

Verona, IT | A new vinyl pressing plant and label, Mother Tongue, will open for business in Italy on 4th May. Patrick Gibin is behind the endeavour, a producer whose work has appeared on the likes of Eglo Records, the imprint set up by Alexander Nut and Floating Points which marks a decade in the game this year. Based out of Verona, a city perhaps best known as the home of Romeo & Juliet, Mother Tongue is billed as an EU-funded project that intends to support independent artists and labels. The first release will come in the form of an album, ‘Butterflying’, which is the handiwork of producer, drummer and composer Tommaso Cappellato. This is the latest in a string of announcements involving new vinyl pressing plants. Vancouver recently welcomed its first new plant in 30 years, another operation is set to arrive in Liverpool next year, and in Chicago local artists now have the option to have wax produced in town after two decades without.

Kuala Lumpur, MY | The return of the humble turntable – but now with digital features: Millions of songs, available at any time, even on your smartphone: The infinite choices on streaming services is turning more and more listeners back to the manageable lengths and tactile feel of a good old vinyl. So why is digitalisation creeping into vinyl players? The arm swings over and lowers a playing needle onto the spinning black vinyl. Then, with a soft crackle, music begins to play. Despite all that’s offered by digital music and streaming services like Spotify, many people still miss the tactile analogue experience of a vinyl record player. With music streaming, the choice is almost infinite. A long-playing record (LP) offers eight, maybe ten songs. So what’s the attraction? Some say it’s because listening to a record is a more unhurried experience, beginning with the anticipation of unpacking the vinyl from its sleeve. “Digital is unsexy,” says Holger Biermann from German HiFi magazine Lowbeats.de.

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