Shocker: A lot of LP buyers never listen to their LPs. What’s up with that? The LP sales surge continues year after year, and Amazon’s turntable numbers are ramping up, so I was taken aback by stories of new LP buyers not listening to their new tunes. According to the BBC, nearly half of LPs sold aren’t listened to! That number seems absurdly high, but even if the actual percentage is lower, it’s still disconcerting. I’ve heard some new-to-vinyl buyers don’t even own a turntable, but I’m hoping one might be in their future.
Liquid Filled Vinyl Records Exist, and Some of Them Are Super Gross: Vinyl nerds love limited editions, and one of the rarest subsets of gimmick records are the liquid-filled variety. You read that right—liquid-filled vinyl. The concept isn’t all that new, and was first (abortively) attempted by Disney in the ’70s, but it’s only become popular and viable in more recent years.
A record year, Newburyport music store celebrates its 40th anniversary: The year was 1976. Boston’s debut album was soaring on the charts, and Peter Frampton had just become “Alive.” And Richard Osborne first opened the doors to Dyno Records in downtown Newburyport. Today, Osborne is celebrating his 40th anniversary of selling records, CDs, musical instruments, turntables and other musical things from his Middle Street store. He is also looking forward to more years doing what he loves doing — even though it’s hard for him to pinpoint what has kept him in business for so long. “I don’t know, I must be doing something right,” Osborne said.
It’s both telling and sobering that, upon Prince’s passing, his—what’s the word?—otherworldly, seemingly effortless guitar solo as the outro to George Harrison’s “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” performed at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame for George’s posthumous induction was just…everywhere.
The induction jams are moments captured in a bottle. And those moments for the first time have been captured on vinyl—180 gram, natch—and we have a few copies of Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Live, Volume 1 to give away. First, here’s some official stuff:
“For over a quarter century, rock and roll’s biggest stars have gathered on one special evening for an exclusive party: The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremonies. Honoring music’s most influential figures with the most prestigious of awards, it’s also an evening where both artists and fans celebrate rock and roll with once-in-a-lifetime performances. For the first time on vinyl, Time Life has pressed a selection of the most memorable moments in the history of the induction ceremony, previously only available in digital and physical formats.
Volumes 2 and 3 will roll out though 2016, allowing fans to collect even more of these beloved performances on vinyl. Additionally, the net proceeds go to The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation, which supports the exhibits and educational programs of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.
Jazz Record Mart founder opens new store: Bob Koester, who closed his celebrated Jazz Record Mart in February after more than half a century in business, has opened a new shop. Located in the front room of his Delmark Records studio, 4121 N. Rockwell St. in the Horner Park neighborhood, the store currently carries 9,000 titles, with more to come. “I’m back in business,” Koester said Friday.
Man wins lottery, opens record shop: Millionaire lottery winner Adrian Bayford has opened a record shop in Cambridge with his winnings. Dealing in second hand records and a wide range of music and film memorabilia, Black Barn Records opened for business over the weekend and is Bayford’s second venture into music retail. He was running Suffolk Music Centre in Haverhill when he and his then-wife Gillian bagged the £148million Euromillions jackpot in 2012. “Unlike a lot of the national chains who sell you what they want to sell we cater to what people actually want,” Bayford told Cambridge News.
New vinyl record store sees early success: As soon as you walk into Vintage Vinyl & Antiques, you’ll hear music played from one of the store’s many vinyl records. Bill Pimentel has always loved listening to vinyl records for his music and because of that opening a record shop for the music item has always been in the back of his mind. So when the Paris building in Old Town Pocatello became vacant, he decided to make the store a reality.
Obese Records Store To Close After 21 Glorious Years: Sad news for the Australian hip-hop world broke last week as Tirren Staaf aka Pegz, founder of Obese Records, announced via Facebook that the Obese Record store would be closing its doors. The iconic record store has been around for 21 years and has been a one of the only places truly dedicated to Australian hip-hop culture.
As demand for vinyl surges, Ozarks record stores try to keep up: As more people ditch digital music, they’re turning to vinyl records. In the last decades vinyl sales have reached recent record highs. According to Nielson, in 2005 0.9 million were sold across the US. Last year alone, record sales hit close to 12 million. It’s a trend that Wes Nichols has watched first hand in his 23 years at Stick it in Your Ear in downtown Springfield.
David Bowie’s ‘Blackstar’ Is Amazon’s Best-Selling Vinyl Album: David Bowie’s ‘Blackstar’ has been named Amazon’s best-selling vinyl album. The vinyl revival is a much explored facet of modern music, with income from vinyl sales in the United States exceeding that of the free-streaming model…The best-selling album of all time on Amazon is David Bowie’s ‘Blackstar’. The singer’s lauded farewell record, it was released to ecstatic reviews earlier this year. Arctic Monkeys’ ‘AM’ sits in second place, with Pink Floyd’s perennial prog favourite ‘The Dark Side Of The Moon’ arriving in third place.
If you expose David Bowie’s ★ Blackstar sleeve to sunlight, something amazing happens: More Bowie secrets. It’s not a good idea to expose your records to sunlight but one Reddit user has discovered that by leaving the ★ Blackstar gatefold (not the actual vinyl) out in the sun, a hidden starfield is revealed. The stars appear on a thin sheet of paper which sits behind the gatefold’s die-cut star. It’s not yet clear whether the change on the paper is permanent or temporary. It does seem likely that the design is intentional because the thinner paper isn’t found anywhere else on the cover and doesn’t appear to serve another purpose.
My 2 Cents: Record Store Day is losing its groove: …I’m all for supporting small businesses, record stores in particular. But the way to do it is to visit them often, see what new and used music they have and make purchases once in a while. The more you do this, the less you need a special day to purchase marked-up limited releases…I’ve spoken with a few friends who are fellow vinyl nerds. This year, we shared the same experience of reacting to Record Store Day with a shrug. That’s because for us, our local record stores get our attention (and our money) more than just one day a year.
Vinyl gets a Main Street ‘Revival’: There’s plenty of comfort food on “The Menu” posted inside downtown’s latest business opening downtown. But the only bowls inside Vinyl Record Revival are those crafted out of over-loved LPs. The good stuff — ‘60s British Invasion, ‘70s rock and hefty samplings of jazz, country, hip hop and classical records — is served up in the thousands.
Sunday Q&A with Jim Bland of Plan 9 Records: Ask nearly any musician, music fan or record buyer in Richmond from any generation who the good guys are on the local music scene, and Jim Bland’s name is always near the top of the list. He’s the co-founder and owner of Plan 9 Records. From selling records to releasing his own to hosting bands for in-store concerts, he has long been one of the city’s biggest champions of local music. He’s also a survivor who has weathered the “death” of the record store business and lived to see the resurgence in interest in vinyl albums.
Vinyl’s Vivacious Resurgence: How Records Are Making a Comeback: There’s something to be said about getting a new record and playing it for the first time. “Putting the needle down on the wax… Ah, can’t beat it,” said Rick Ellis. Ellis was in good company with that comment Sunday, as hundreds of fellow audiophiles flooded the Leonard Post VFW for a bi-annual record show. Fifty-seven tables were lined with the hits of today and yesteryear, plus everything in-between. “You come out here and there’s people and it’s crowded and you’re looking for one thing. Definitely satisfying to find something in the sea of records,” said Matthew Nowak.
Vinyl revival alive and spinning: Stan Sykes’ love of vinyl began as an teenager in ‘70s England. He would spend countless late nights listening to legendary DJ John Peel, who is often credited for breaking era-defending bands like Joy Division and The Smiths. “I would lay with a pen and scribble down songs I heard in the night,” Sykes said. “Then I’d go to the record shop on the weekend and go ‘do you have such and such’ and they would order it in.” Music consumption is a completely different experience in 2016. The Australian Recording Industry Association released figures this month for 2015 showing online streaming accounts for 62 per cent of the market. Sales in digital downloads and CDs both decreased by 13 and four per cent respectively.
Record Store Day 2016: Singles And Vinyl Rule Once Again: Who says the independent record store is dead? Record Store Day 2016 took place close to two weeks ago, and now that the numbers are in via Nielsen, it is clear that the annual event was a smashing success. Album sales at independent record stores grew by 130% from the week before the celebration, and vinyl also did very well, with week over week sales growing 321%
Eight years strong, Record Store Day sees another day of success: Over the years what once started as a small list of limited edition and RSD exclusive releases of vinyl records has grown into list stretching hundreds of artists from both independent labels and big name performers. According to the Record Store Day organization website, 60 percent of RSD exclusives still come from independent artists and labels. Record collectors and casual listeners with hungry ears lined up at Canterbury and other stores before the doors were even open to snatch up some wax including well over 300 RSD exclusives.
Old stack of wax could be valuable: Jeff MacKinnon is not a bargain hunter or a vinyl record fan, but he knew a good deal when he saw one. Last week, MacKinnon went to a storage locker auction in Charlottetown and purchased someone’s life-long collection of vinyl records. The tenant had abandoned their storage unit and the owner of the facility, Jason Pitre, had posted on Facebook that he would be selling its contents, which was more than 4,000 vinyl records.
Retroplex Records Is the DJ’s Vinyl Shop That Dallas Has Been Missing: Owning a record store in the 21st century means a more than it used to. While vinyl’s return to favor has led to a host of new record stores in Dallas, simply selling records isn’t always enough for DJs. That’s why when Josh Kynd and his wife decided to open Retroplex Records and More in Garland, they decided to make it an all-out vintage store — but that just happens to have a top-notch selection of dance music.
Pick My Turntable Unveils a Guide to Find the Best Record Players in 2016: In one of the latest news, pickmyturntable.com has launched a new article titled as ‘A simple guide to find the best record player in 2016’, through which the site hopes to help buyers of record players or turntables find the best model. According to one of the site’s representatives, “Anything can go wrong in the record player buying process if the proper steps are not maintained. Besides, buyers must understand or have some important information about what needs to be considered in a turntable.”
Manchester-based record player company signs supplier deal with HMV: GPO Retro, a designer and manufacturer of 20th-century style telephones, radios and record players, has expanded its customer base after signing a new supplier deal with HMV. As part of the deal, the national entertainment retailer has become a stockist for two of GPO Retro’s turntables and a number of its vinyl accessories, including Westwood speakers and vinyl cases.
Denver Public library has released a vinyl record! Yes! The Denver Public Library has released a 45rpm vinyl record featuring local Denver bands Accordion Crimes and The Raven and The Writing Desk! This fantastic artifact is here to raise awareness (in an old-school way) for DPL’s local music service: Volume Denver! I came up with this idea about a year ago and then was afforded the opportunity to present it to the powers-that-be here at DPL and, lo and behold, they liked the idea and approved it!
Nielsen Music: Indie Retail Sales Surge On Record Store Day: • Vinyl album sales at independent record stores jumped by 321% over the prior week • Independent record stores accounted for 75% of total vinyl LPs sold in the US that week. • Independent record stores account for 96% of all physical singles sold in the US that week. • RECORD STORE DAY limited edition albums and singles combined to sell nearly 300,000 copies in the US.
Technics’ turntable will give you good vibrations late this year: Technics, the audio brand of Japanese giant Panasonic, has today announced that its Grand Class Direct Drive Turntable System SL-1200G will release in Autumn 2016 (or Spring if you’re in Australia). The announcement follows the release of the limited edition SL-1200GAE, which saw its limited run of 300 sell out in just half an hour when it was released in Japan. 900 units were later released worldwide…The turntable may be using a vintage music format, but its design and construction employs a number of modern innovations to overcome issues that have historically been associated with the format.
Two David Bowie live albums set for vinyl reissue: David Bowie’s legacy looks set to be cast in wax once more, with the release of two live albums on vinyl. Included in the David Bowie: Five Years 1969 – 1973 box set announced last year, Live Santa Monica ’72 and the live album Ziggy Stardust Motion Picture Soundtrack that corresponds to the film of the same name, will be available individually for the first time.
From Fleetwood Mac to the Stone Roses: Record collectors in East Kilbride rush to buy new vinyl releases from Sainsbury’s: The best-selling vinyl in East Kilbride has been revealed. After bringing back the format last month to sell alongside CDs, bosses at Sainsbury’s in Kingsgate Retail Park have revealed that Fleetwood Mac’s classic album ‘Rumours’ has been the best-seller. The top record is closely followed by The Beatles records ‘Abbey Road’ and ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’, and then The Stone Roses’ self-titled debut.
Australia is opening a new vinyl pressing plant this year: If the vinyl boom is about to go bust then it’s news to Roundabout Records. As FACT Magazine reports, the Adelaide-based recording studio and record pressing facility are set to open Australia’s newest vinyl pressing plant later this year. Roundabout Records is currently a smaller-scale operation led by Adelaide Hills resident Colin Forster. Forster’s Hills-based facilities are small-scale but full-service, offering everything from recording and mastering to pressing.
Music fans giving vinyl albums a spin again: Vinyl isn’t just the name of a new series on HBO. In fact, not only are those old records you have stored in the closet desirable and a little more valuable than you thought, so is that vintage turntable the albums are stacked on. And while classic albums by Pink Floyd, The Beatles, Foreigner and Boston are the hardest to keep in stock for Chad Bledsoe at Chad’s Records inside Winder Binder on the North Shore, the vinyl version of Adele’s 2015 release “25” outsold all of them by a wide margin worldwide.