Author Archives: TVD HQ

In rotation: 6/26/20

HMV’s Doug Putman on the future of CD: HMV’s owner Doug Putman has spoken to Music Week about the future of the chain and physical music following its reopening. In the latest issue, Putman calls on the music industry to back HMV as it tries to regain some momentum after lockdown – and warns on a possible change to the product mix if suppliers don’t fully support him. HMV stores were able to open from June 15, in line with other record shops. The entertainment chain introduced strict safety measures, including social distancing signage, screens and sanitiser. Across the music retail sector, sales were up last week and were given a further boost by the Love Record Stores promotion at the weekend Shoppers returned to HMV from last week, and Putman is confident that vinyl fans will accept the new normal. “I think that’s just the culture, if you love being in an HMV,” he said. “We just have really great customers.” HMV also launched a new personal shopper service, which enables customers to leave a list with staff, who could also provide recommendations.

Kirkley, UK | Former restaurant to be transformed into vinyl lounge: A record store is to relocate and expand its business with the opening of a vinyl lounge in a popular former restaurant. Aux Records will move from its Waterloo Road base, in Kirkley, around the corner to London Road South as it prepares to welcome customers to the new vinyl lounge. The new site has been empty for almost a year after the closure of Desmond’s restaurant. Owner Jan Mulder said: “We are relocating to the former Desmond’s restaurant around the corner on London Road South and expanding our current business. “It is still going to be based around our vinyl store, but with a cafe and lounge where people can come and listen to music and have a coffee. People can still come and browse and buy records with a wide range on offer.” The store opened last autumn after Mr Mulder left his job at a care agency to pursue his passion for music. He said: “I’m really excited about the move. The current business has been building since I opened last October and we are ready to take it to the next level.

Move The Record aims to support local vinyl stores with live music streams: A bit like High Fidelity, but online and with many record stores. Want to save independent record stores (who often gain essential revenue from hosting live events and representing acts under their own labels) from closing, as a result of the coronavirus? Good, Rob at Championship Vinyl would salute you – but we’ll stop talking about the Nick Hornby novel and subsequent John Cusack movie High Fidelity now (promise). Move the Record is a global initiative devised in response to the uncertain future that bricks-and-mortar record shops are facing worldwide. And let’s not forget, the 33⅓ vinyl LP only just celebrated its 72nd birthday, so it’s high time for an online event. Move the Record’s first edition is set to take place across Friday 3rd July and Saturday 4th July, and will comprise 2 x 12-hour broadcasts of 2-hour sets from record shops around the world, featuring a diverse range of some of the world’s best DJs, all playing in the world’s best record stores. Organisers say that discounts of up to 20% – as well as various other offers and events – will be in place across partaking stores’ online platforms for 48 hours.

Aberdeen, UK | Aberdeen Vinyl Records shop relocates and announces plans to reopen: Aberdeen Vinyl Records has moved premises and announced its plans to reopen. The store, which was based in Aberdeen Market, stated it has now moved to a new unit on Union Street. Located on 101 -103 Union Street near HSBC, the popular vinyl record store will reopen on Monday June 29. The shop’s spokesperson said: “We’ll be sharing the shop with our good friends at Gift Wrap and we’ll have slightly more floor space than we had in the Market. “We’re getting our shop signage and social distancing measures all worked out and ordered up now.” In addition to more than 5,000 LPs, the store also has some reasonably-priced collectables on offer.

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TVD Radar: Tony Allen Live in London, short film streaming now

VIA PRESS RELEASE | World Circuit Records today present Tony Allen Live in London, a short film about Tony Allen’s recent Rejoice live shows. The piece was filmed at one of the two very special Rejoice shows Allen performed at London’s Church of Sound in mid-March, just a few weeks before his untimely passing at the end of April at the age of 79. Watch/share the film below.

In addition to clips of live performances from the night, the piece features interviews with Allen himself and some of the prestigious musicians who joined him on stage including South African trumpet player Claude Deppa and double bass player Mutale Chashi. Tony commented on the film back in April, “I played two shows in London in March, which were meant to be the first of many Rejoice shows this year. It was good to be playing these songs on stage so many years after the recording. My good friend Claude Deppa is a great South African trumpet player, we asked him to play Hugh’s parts on stage. Unfortunately, the lockdowns started shortly after.”

Allen will be posthumously awarded the Outstanding Contribution To Music at this year’s AIM Awards, taking place virtually on August 12, with recent single “We’ve Landed” receiving a nomination for Best Independent Track. Allen & Masekela’s second single from the album, “Never (Lagos Never Gonna Be The Same),” is a jazz-meets-Afrobeat-hued tribute to Fela Kuti, the towering pioneer of Afrobeat who collaborated closely with Allen for decades. The video for the track features footage of Allen & Masekela playing the song at the original 2010 recording sessions at Livingston Studios in London. Stream/share the video below

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In rotation: 6/25/20

UK | Love Record Stores Day boosts music retail, taking over £1 million in revenue: “We had really high hopes for Love Record Stores Day, but things exceeded even our most ambitious expectations.” Love Record Stores Day has delivered a big boost to music retailers in the UK after taking over £1 million in revenue. Taking place online on Saturday (June 20), Love Record Stores Day was held to replace the rearranged Record Store Day 2020 — which has been postponed twice this year due to the coronavirus outbreak — as the latter will now be split over three dates (August 29, September 26 and October 24). Its aim was to get music-lovers to support their favourite independent record stores by shopping online, with an array of exclusive and limited edition vinyl releases being made available by a variety of artists and labels. …A survey of participating retailers discovered that the vast majority of this stock was sold out within one hour of being made available online.

Wellington, NZ | The music’s not over, don’t turn out the lights: Julian Lloyd Webber popped in and bought a Pat Boone album. An obliging Kenny Rogers was getting fish ‘n’ chips next door. One of those Oasis guys dropped by. In the decades of selling music out of Slow Boat Records on Cuba St in central Wellington, Dennis O’Brien has seen a parade of famous musicians pass through his shop. He originally started Slow Boat in a storeroom off Plimmer Steps before moving to Cuba St. Eventually, he bought the former Westpac bank on the street, which has been home base for years. “I bought the bank,” O’Brien half-laughs in the back office, stacked high with music. As he prepares to sell most of the business to current staff and take a step back, it is the old friends that pop in that he’ll miss the most. “Everybody comes in at some stage, every guy I have ever been to school with.” …The history of the shop is peppered with celebrity, such as the time in 2015 a customer bought a Tami Neilson album, only to find out the singer was in-store and signed it for her. Neil Finn played in-store one day in 2015. Robert Plant, of Led Zeppelin fame, dropped by in 2013 and bought an album by British singer Holly Golightly.

Harrogate, UK | U2 star this week in Harrogate’s Vinyl Sessions event: Harrogate’s weekly online Vinyl Sessions event returns this week with two classic albums by U2. The double bill of terrific albums from the peak of the Irish rock superstars’ success on Wednesday night will include The Unforgettable Fire and The Joshua Tree. Since vintage hi-fi expert Colin Paine set it up two years ago, Vinyl Sessions has raised more than £13,000 for Friends of Harrogate Hospital charity. Even when lockdown forced it to move from physical to digital, Starling bar and cafe in to Zoom, it has still managed to raise more money as it has continued to shine a light on some of the world’s greatest music acts. Released in October 1984, recording on The Unforgettable Fire began in May 1984 at Slane Castle, where the band lived, wrote, and recorded to find new inspiration. The album was completed in August 1984 at Windmill Lane Studios and is full of what lead singer Bono described as atmospheric sounds and “sketches”.

Asheville, NC | Mark Capon brings an analog pastime into the digital age: Mark Capon, co-owner of Harvest Records on Haywood Road in West Asheville, says his shop has been closed to the public since March 17. Despite being allowed to reopen at a limited capacity, he plans to wait to ensure the safety of his staff and the community at large. But while the storefront remains shuttered, the business has started offering curbside pickup, mail orders and the occasional local delivery as Capon tries to reimagine the usual record store experience through a virtual platform. Instead of customers leisurely thumbing through hundreds of vintage and new vinyls — which includes about 10,000 pieces of vinyl among its 15,000-item inventory — Capon says he’s using the store’s social media accounts to present glimpses of its collection and highlight noteworthy offerings. “It’s a physical store with physical media that people like to come in and comb through, so you kind of have to rewire your brain to get people to feel like they’re still combing through the records,” he says.

Daniel Johnston Box Set Confirmed For Record Store Day: Daniel Johnston’s work will be celebrated in a new box set. The special Record Store Day release comprises several out of print albums, alongside some cool merch. Only 500 copies will be available, with ‘The End Is Never Really Over’ following the much-loved songwriter’s death last year. The box set features vinyl copies of two albums – ‘1990’ and ‘Artistic Vice’ – alongside seven stickers of Daniel’s inimitable doodles, and a 16 page art-book. Alongside this, you’ll get a Jeremiah the Frog pin, and a Daniel Johnston x FOLK Clothing tee with the songwriter’s Captain America ‘End of the Show’ drawing. Pretty damn snazzy, we’re sure you’ll agree. ‘The End Is Never Really Over’ is out on August 29th.

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TVD Radar: The Running Man (Deluxe Edition) 2LP OST in stores 8/14

VIA PRESS RELEASE | Varèse Sarabande Records is thrilled to announce the upcoming special release of The Running Man Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Deluxe Edition) by GRAMMY®-winning composer Harold Faltermeyer (Beverly Hills Cop, Top Gun, Cop Out and the upcoming film Top Gun: Maverick). The Deluxe Edition version will be available digitally and released on LP for the first time on August 14, 2020. The LP version is available for pre-order today, June 15, on VareseSarabande.com.

In the year 2019, America is a totalitarian state where the favorite television program is The Running Man—a game show in which prisoners must run to freedom to avoid a brutal death. Having been made a scapegoat by the government, an imprisoned Ben Richards (Arnold Schwarzenegger) has the opportunity to make it back to the outside again by being a contestant on the deadly show, although the twisted host, Damon Killian (Richard Dawson) has no intention of letting him escape.

The original (1987) 17-track soundtrack has been expanded to 35 tracks, which include additional music and unreleased and alternate cues. The album was remastered from the original Paramount Pictures sources. The package features original artwork, images from the film and a booklet with extensive liner notes by film music journalist Daniel Schweiger.

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In rotation: 6/24/20

UK | Love Record Stores event delivers £1 million boost to music retail: The Love Record Stores event delivered a big boost to music retailers, according to figures release by campaign organisers. The event was a day of online shopping for vinyl exclusives at indie retailers and HMV, with a range of strictly limited-edition releases being made available to music fans. Love Record Stores ambassador Tim Burgess was a Music Week cover star this month, alongside interviews with organisers. The aim of the initiative was to provide participating stores with a significant spike in custom and revenues in the absence of Record Store Day, which has been postponed until later this year. Alongside the retail activity the event was supported by a virtual in-store, with performances by a number of artists and exclusive DJs sets broadcast throughout the day.

UK | Who Needs RSD? British Music Retailers Surpass £1m In One-Day Sales: Though the first of three planned Record Store Day 2020 legs won’t arrive for two months yet, UK-based music retailers enjoyed more than $1.24 million (£1 million) in one-day sales on Saturday, June 20th. The substantial sum derived from the Love Record Stores event, during which fans were encouraged to purchase limited-edition (and vinyl-exclusive) albums from their favorite British music retailers. Importantly, June 20th was the original date of Record Store Day 2020, which organizers have now split into three weekends (across August, September, and October). As part of the Love Record Stores initiative, labels and artists (including Elton John, Tom Walker, and The Rolling Stones, among others) shipped approximately 50,000 vinyl units, encompassing 83 new and reissued records, to retailers ahead of 6/20.

Grass Valley, CA | Clock Tower Records up for sale: After almost nine years of owning Clock Tower Records in downtown Grass Valley, Curt Smith is putting the business up for sale. He said he’s making the decision not because of COVID-19 or the subsequent orders stemming from the pandemic, but, rather, because of his current health condition, and because he wants to spend more time with family. Smith said he got into the record business because he enjoys listening to entire albums, and interacting with others about their musical interests. “When you pick (an album) up, you actually listen to the whole record,” he said, adding that many great songs from albums were never played on the radio, meaning music lovers may have otherwise missed out on a certain song if not for records. In addition to his store, Smith sells his inventory online. He noted that for decades records have been growing in popularity and in 2019, for the first time since the early 1980s, records were on track to actually outsell CDs.

US | 19 awesome Black-owned record stores: Racism, racial inequality, and racial injustice have plagued America for centuries, but long overdue conversations on these topics have been happening on a major, mainstream level ever since the murder of George Floyd at the hands of police led to nationwide protests, all of which happened during a worldwide pandemic that especially impacts black and brown communities. Because of this, we’ve seen a recent increase in activism, fundraisers, and the promotion of art/literature that benefit the fight for racial justice. Even beyond that, there are more ways to get involved, including directly uplifting and supporting Black people (those you know and those you don’t) in regard to their ideas and their endeavors, in your everyday life. One of the most direct and sustainable ways to support the Black community is to shop at and support Black-owned businesses as often as possible, especially now that the pandemic has taken its toll on small, independent businesses in general. …We’ve compiled a list of 19 Black-owned record stores all across the US.

12 record shops unite on 24-hour Move The Record streaming event: Vinyl outlets in Europe, the US and South America will participate in the event on July 3rd and 4th. 12 record shops from around the world will take part in a two-day, 24-hour streaming event called Move The Record. The two 12-hour broadcasts will take place on July 3rd and 4th, with DJs like Bradley Zero, Steffi, Prins Thomas and Fred P playing sets. There will be a discounts in place at all the shops for 48 hours, with a sweepstake competition offering prizes including vinyl, hardware, studio sessions, production courses and merchandise. All of the proceeds will be distributed among the participating record shops. “We all—artists, clubs, labels, distribution, pressing plants—are facing uncertain times as a direct result of the Covid crisis,” said Dana Ruh, who will DJ from Berlin’s KMA60, which she runs with Jamie Fry. “Our industry is all connected, and many people have already lost their jobs. Clubs are closed; performing artists have lost their primary source of income; record stores—our cultural hubs of community and discovery—are struggling to stay afloat. So on July 3rd and 4th, myself and 11 other stores around the world will come together to support one another. It’s all connected. We are all connected.”

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TVD Radar: The Buddy Holly Story OST deluxe editions in stores 8/21

VIA PRESS RELEASE | Varèse Sarabande Records will release The Buddy Holly Story Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Deluxe Edition), with all songs from the Academy Award®-winning film available for the first time on LP, CD, and all streaming platforms on August 21.

The LP format will include a black vinyl record in a standard jacket with printed inner sleeve, and the CD format will include a 16-page booklet, with both packages including rare photos of the icon, courtesy of his estate and the Buddy Holly Educational Foundation. With the announcement of this exciting upcoming release, pre-order is available now on varesesarabande.com. The expanded soundtrack features 22 tracks in total, including 11 tracks not released on the original soundtrack.

The additional songs include many performances that were in the film, such as “That’ll Be the Day,” “Mockingbird Hill,” and “Tennessee Waltz” performed by Gary Busey (as Buddy Holly), “Chantilly Lace” performed by Gailard Sartain (as the Big Bopper), and “You Send Me” performed by Paul Mooney (as Sam Cooke).

Buddy Holly is one of the most revered musicians in rock and roll history, and The Buddy Holly Story is his definitive legacy film. The project earned three Oscar® nominations, including “Best Actor” for prolific character actor Gary Busey, who has appeared in over 150 films, including Lethal Weapon and Point Break.

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TVD Radar: Airto, Seeds on the Ground blue vinyl reissue in stores 7/31

VIA PRESS RELEASE | Airto’s second album, and second and last release for the Buddah label, brought back largely the same crew that appeared on his debut record Natural Feelings (also reissued by Real Gone): vocalist (and wife) Flora Purim, composer and multi-instrumentalist Hermeto Pascoal, and bassist Ron Carter, with contributions from Dom Um Ramão (who later replaced Airto in Weather Report) and Severino De Oliveira a.k.a. Sivuca.

Given Airto’s connections to Miles Davis, Weather Report, and Return to Forever, Seeds on the Ground could easily get lumped into the jazz fusion category. But that would be a mistake. This totally unclassifiable (and, by the way, exceedingly rare) album was no mere blend of rock and jazz influences. Instead, Seeds on the Ground was truly a fusion, an ecstatic melding of bossa nova, psychedelic rock, Brazilian folk, Latin jazz, free jazz, and “world music.” If that sounds a bit calculated or intimidating, it’s not; what makes this album so compelling is how organic and intimate it all sounds.

Airto played with probably the three most legendary fusion groups in jazz history, and later released a bunch of albums, many for the CTI label. But it would be hard not to label this beautiful record as his crowning achievement. Our proud Real Gone reissue features the original gatefold cover art, and comes in an ocean blue vinyl pressing limited to 1,000 copies.

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In rotation: 6/23/20

UK | Vinyl sales soar as record stores re-open for first time since lockdown: Liam Gallagher’s No.1 MTV Unplugged album led the sales last month. Sales of vinyl have soared after record stores re-opened for the first time since lockdown. According to data from the Official Charts Company, sales over the past week reached the highs of pre-COVID-19. Vinyl sales surged by 27.57% week-on-week to a total of 88,486 units, while CDs also experienced a rise of 11.09% to 253,779 units. Liam Gallagher‘s No.1 ‘MTV Unplugged’ album led sales after shifting 17,938 units, followed by the reissue of Manic Street Preachers’ ‘Gold Against The Soul’ with 2,838 physical sales. Overall, physical sales accounted for 19.1% of the overall albums market across the past week, a three-month high. It comes after Rough Trade confirmed that they would be re-opening their record stores from Tuesday, June 16. Sales had been processed solely online since the UK lockdown was implemented back in March.

New York, NY | Rough Trade NYC to reopen amidst COVID-19crash: Rough Trade’s iconic New York location has announced plans to reopen June 24th at noon following its temporary closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Brooklyn-based record store, label, and concert venue is the final of the five Rough Trade locations, all of which have successfully restarted operation. While the brand and this address specifically is an established mecca for physical music consumption, even the big guys aren’t safe these days. Following news that Amoeba’s original Hollywood location would be permanently closing its doors, the idea of losing the country’s most treasured record markets has become increasingly real. The organizers of Record Store Day told Rolling Stone up to 80% of record stores across the country have had to close their doors completely in respect for the quarantine, although many of them are able to continue accepting orders or sell in another capacity. This unprecedented hit comes at a time when streaming is the preferred vehicle for music consumption and while vinyl sales have trended positively, the massive losses recorded in the past four months have proven to be too much for many retailers.

Best record player under $300 in 2020: Audio Technica, Crosley, Pro-ject, and more: Spending a little more on a turntable can help bring your vinyl collection to life. CNET tests eight of the top record players under $300. The time is right to get into budget hi-fi. From amazing, cheap speakers to a high-quality turntable, it’s never been more affordable to get a great-sounding system for vinyl records. One of the first questions to ask is: How much should I spend if I want the best turntable? Name a price from $40 or up, and there’s no doubt you’ll find a record player to fit your budget: from vintage turntables to the newest fully automatic and Bluetooth turntable options. For example, the Audio Technica LP60 is a great little turntable for $100. But there are even better choices for the best turntable under $300 out there. I’ve chosen $300 as the sweet spot because it opens up the options for finding a high-quality model. These vinyl record players are no longer simple toys but can be considered true hi-fi: They offer elevated vinyl record sound quality and high-quality components.

Empire Records: 90s cult classic starring Liv Tyler and Renée Zellweger is ripe for a comeback: What’s not to love about a band of scrappy teenage misfits and a music store so cool even shoplifters wanted to work there? If the idea of a “dream job” is a myth, the employees at indie record store Empire Records didn’t get that memo. For them – self-identifying misfits and weirdos, prone to petty crime – the shop floor was a place where obeying societal norms didn’t count for much. It’s 1995 in Delaware, US, an era in which music was becoming increasingly commodified with the rise of CD sales, and placing celebrities on a Swarovski crystal pedestal was considered the norm. Inevitably, everything that was once good and sacred about music fandom was under threat. The film turns 25 this year and it’s having a moment. A cinematic underdog that bombed on release, it’s now a respected cultural touchstone. It’s not just a heady dose of nostalgia for an era where dancing on rooftops or singing along with the Cranberries was normal. It’s also grown into a go-to comfort watch for a generation who might need to remember the value of being understood over betraying their sense of self for a bit of easy cash and glory.

Fleetwood Mac to release expanded reissue of 1969 album ‘Then Play On’ in September: A deluxe, expanded edition of Fleetwood Mac’s 1969 album, Then Play On, will be released on CD and as a two-LP set pressed on 180-gram vinyl on September 18. The reissue, which can be pre-ordered now, will include the original U.K. version’s 14 songs, as well as four bonus tracks. The album has been mastered at half speed, offering improved audio quality. The CD edition will include a 16-page mediabook, while the two-LP version will be packaged with a 16-page book pack, both of which will feature a foreword penned by drummer Mick Fleetwood and sleeve notes by veteran music journalist and author Anthony Bozza. Released in September 1969, Then Play On was Fleetwood Mac’s third studio album. It also was the group’s last album to feature founding singer/guitarist and original band leader Peter Green and its first to feature guitarist Danny Kirwan. Then Play On became Fleetwood Mac’s third straight album to reach the top 10 of the U.K. charts, ascending to #6, although it only reached #109 in the US.

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TVD Radar: Alice Cooper, Paul McCartney, Joni Mitchell in Morrison Hotel Gallery’s online exhibit ‘Endless Summer’

VIA PRESS RELEASE | The days of COVID have everyone yearning for a bit of fun, lots of sun, and dreaming of summers past. Because suntans fade and stay-at-home orders can’t last forever, Morrison Hotel Gallery invites patrons to ride the wave and relish in memories of summertimes yore with its latest online exhibition, Endless Summer, opening June 20th. The exhibition will be sponsored by Sports Illustrated – a magazine dedicated to the highest level of sports photography, and Volcom, the skate, surf, and swimwear giant brand that encourages its wearers to creatively and endlessly seek elevation.

Dreaming in shades of cool, this collection of fine art imagery takes a sweeping look at the photographic works of Henry Diltz, Guy Webster, Lynn Goldsmith, Pattie Boyd, and Norman Seeff, among others. Taking its title from Bruce Brown’s 1966 surf camp classic, Endless Summer is a love letter to sun-washed phenomena and and all that looms just beneath its crystalline surface. The lineup of images in this collection are so hot, they’ll have everyone reaching for a cold drink and slathering on the sunscreen. From blue waters to muscle cars, Endless Summer features a series of music and onscreen legends at play – and sometimes at work – in a sultry summertime setting.

Fans will find moments that encapsulate the essence of quiet relaxation, as in Seef’s free-flowing shot of Joni Mitchell drifting in the deep depths of blue pool waters and a legendary black and white photo of Keith Richards (snapped by Michael Cooper) floating on his back, arms outstretched, in the pool at Villa Nellcôte.

Endless Summer also captures the sheer joy of letting loose and hanging out with friends. The Mamas and the Papas frolic in a pool underneath an impromptu hat fountain in one Guy Webster shot, while Charles Trainer was ready with his camera when The Beatles made a splash in Miami Beach while there for their 1964 performance on The Ed Sullivan Show. That TV appearance wasn’t the only history-making music event to take place in the heat of summer; the exhibition also revisits the crowds and sizzling performances of Woodstock in the summer of ’69.

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TVD Radar: Eddie Floyd autobiography Knock Knock! Knock! On Wood: My Life in Soul in stores 8/11

VIA PRESS RELEASE | “Without his music, I wouldn’t be here because he’s the guy that turned me on to the whole Stax sound and the R&B sound … He’s written so many great songs!”Bruce Springsteen

Known for the soul classics “Knock on Wood,” “634-5789,” “Raise Your Hand,” “Big Bird,” and “I’ve Never Found a Girl (To Love Me Like You Do),” among others, Eddie Floyd has been a soul legend for more than 60 years. His professional singing career began in Detroit in the 1950s, when he co-founded the Falcons, considered by many the first soul group. A solo artist and songwriter for Memphis’s famed Stax Records from 1966 until 1975, Floyd has subsequently been the singer for the Blues Brothers Band and for Bill Wyman’s Rhythm Kings, while continuing to perform and record solo.

In Knock! Knock! Knock! On Wood, Floyd recounts how a three-year stint in an Alabama reform school shaped his young life; recalls the early years of R&B in Detroit alongside future Motown and Stax legends; discusses the songwriting sessions with Steve Cropper and Booker T. Jones that produced his biggest hits; addresses his complicated lifelong relationship with the often-unpredictable Wilson Pickett; shares his memories of friend Otis Redding; reveals his unlikely involvement in the rise of Southern rock darlings Lynyrd Skynyrd; and offers an insider perspective on the tragic downfall of Stax Records.

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TVD Radar: Errol Dunkley, Darling Ooh! ‘root beer’ vinyl edition in stores 7/31

VIA PRESS RELEASE | Errol Dunkley was an early reggae star and one of the youngest, recording his first side (“My Queen”) at the age of 12 for Prince Buster in 1964 and scoring his first hit (“You’re Gonna Need Me”) in 1967. Later, he became a key performer in the ‘70s Brit-Reggae scene, just missing the Top Ten in 1978 with his remake of John Holt’s “OK Fred.”

Helmed by groundbreaking producer Sylvia Pottenger, Darling Ooh! is actually his 1972 debut album, but like a lot of records that came out on small Jamaican imprints that later got swallowed into the mammoth Trojan label, its history is complicated; this record came out on the Gay Feet label under the title Presenting Errol Dunkley and also on the Trojan imprint Attack the same year as Darling Ooh! with different art and an expanded track listing (and, just to make things more confusing, a 1979 Trojan reissue had the Gay Feet track listing and the Attack artwork).

Real Gone’s reissue reproduces the 1972 Attack release with its fetching cover art and expanded track listing (featuring the first appearance of the hit “A Little Way Different”); even better, we ponied up for a new remastering (by Mike Milchner at SonicVision) so this record sounds better than it ever has. Limited “root beer” vinyl pressing limited to 1,000 copies, a classic roots-reggae release!

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In rotation: 6/22/20

UK | Vinyl sales surge as record shops reopen: Finally, here’s some good news for physical music sales. According to the latest Official Charts Company data, sales for the past week were back to pre-Covid 19 levels. Record shops were allowed to reopen under strict safety guidelines from June 15. HMV returned with a new personal shopper system. The Love Record Stores event (June 20) is set to deliver a further boost for the following week. ERA reported strong trading following the reopening. While it wasn’t the busiest week for releases, Liam Gallagher’s No.1 MTV Unplugged album (17,938 physical sales) and the reissue of Manic Street Preachers’ Gold Against The Soul (2,838 physical sales) were among titles to drive footfall. Lady Gaga’s Chromatica racked up 7,107 physical sales last week. Of course, a big chunk of those sales – particularly for Gallagher and Gaga – were D2C pre-orders. But there is no doubt that record shops have had an impact on the market since reopening. Physical sales increased by 14.55% to 345,443 units for the week – the biggest tally for 14 weeks.

Hagerstown, MD | Hub City Vinyl turns auto shop into something groovy: Hub City Vinyl, a record store, has opened its doors in the once-vacant and now-restored Massey auto building at 28 E. Baltimore St. Lloyd Thoburn, an owner of 339 Antietam LLC, bought the property from the city and had it renovated. His wife, Sheree Thoburn, owns the record store. Thoburn, owner of Coinopwarehouse, has restored other buildings in the city, including structures on Antietam and Franklin streets. “I’m really thrilled with how it came out,” he said of the Baltimore Street building. “This is our jewel,” Sheree Thoburn said. “This is the one that’s beautiful and fun and functional. … I love it. I just love being here.” Hub City Vinyl offers new, used and vintage 45 and LP records, ranging in price from $2 to $3 to expensive collector editions. The Thoburns said people have traveled from as far away as Delaware to browse through the crates of records, which range from metal to country, and from jazz to comedy.

London, UK | There is nothing more sexy than a vinyl lp, says Etienne Daho, the godfather of Record Store Day this year, as a prelude to the Fête de la musique celebrated on 21st June, the 10th edition of the “Record store Day” has all of the same place, but in condit. This year, as a prelude to the Fête de la musique celebrated on 21st June, the 10th edition of the “Record store Day” has all of the same place, but in conditions that are a bit special due to the health crisis of the sars Coronavirus. The organisers of this event dedicated to independent record stores have decided to “ventilate” in four sequences, the festivities related to the vinyl record : the 20 June, 29 August, 26 September and 24 October. The godfather of this edition, Etienne Daho display at the AFP, “the idea is to have fun, to self, to support the record stores, to accompany the culture. With the beautiful. What could be sexier than vinyl?

Wirral, UK | Wirral author unearths the amazing story of Skeleton Records: Bebington-born author, Graham Jones, who claims to have visited more record shops than any other person and had one of his books turned into a film, takes us on an adventure into Wirral’s legendary Skeleton Records. Any vinyl fan visiting Liverpool should make the effort to take the ferry across the river to visit the legendary music institution known affectionately as Skellys. As a 13-year-old schoolboy, growing up in Bebington, I would get the bus each weekend into Birkenhead to visit Skeleton, a magical and mystical experience. The shop had no window and to enter you walked along a dark corridor. The throbbing sound of progressive rock could be heard coming from the end of what seemed like a cave, while the air was filled with the heady smell of joss sticks and patchouli oil. Time has not dimmed the memory of my first visit. I recall entering a dimly-lit world where anyone with less-than-perfect eyesight would struggle to read the sleeve notes of the LPs on sale.

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TVD Radar: Silence Is Not An Option from
ATO Records supporting Black Lives Matter, vinyl in stores in August

VIA PRESS RELEASE | ATO Records, an independent record label out of New York City, has been reflecting deeply on the injustices and inequality in our world. We recognize that music is not just an agent for change, but a space of solace. As we approach our 20th anniversary as a label, we remain proud to represent a diverse range of artists whose music imparts messages of inclusivity, justice, and equality.

In that spirit, we’ve assembled an LP that showcases our extraordinary roster of artists and epitomizes ATO’s richness of musical diversity and talent. Silence Is Not An Option is a compilation of powerful anthems from the ATO catalog that explore issues of identity, community, social justice, and resistance. Tracks include Brittany Howard’s “Goat Head,” released in 2019, the explosive song that Howard wrote about growing up in the South with a white mother and a black father; Benjamin Booker’s “Witness,” released in 2017, (“Right now we could use a little pick-me-up / Seems like the whole damn nation’s trying to take us down”), a collaboration with soul music and civil rights icon Mavis Staples; Drive-By Truckers’ “What It Means,” released in 2016, the withering track that Patterson Hood wrote in response to the police shootings of Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown; and Chicano Batman’s “Invisible People,” released earlier this year (“Invisible people, we’re tired of living in the dark / Everyone is trying to tear us apart / All we wanna do is heal now”).

The compilation also features “See Me,” a brand-new song from Grammy-nominated R&B artist Emily King. King wrote and recorded the passionate track just days ago in response to the Black Lives Matters protests. “Feeling so moved by this powerful time,” says King. “Everyday watching the world demand justice. I wake up with sadness but also hope. Like people are starting to finally notice how deeply broken things are. Can you hear me now? Can you see me now? I started singing the words and they wouldn’t leave my head.”

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TVD Radar: Pixies, Bossanova limited red 30th anniversary vinyl edition in stores 8/7

VIA PRESS RELEASE | Thursday, June 18, 2020 marked the 30th anniversary of Bossanova, the third studio album by Pixies, originally released on August 13, 1990. To celebrate Bossanova hitting its third decade, 4AD will release a limited red vinyl edition on August 7, complete with the original 16-page booklet that was previously available only with the initial UK LP pressing. Pre-orders can be placed now; go HERE for purchasing details.

Produced by Gil Norton, with whom the band—Black Francis (guitar, vocals), Joey Santiago (guitar), Kim Deal (bass, vocals), David Lovering (drums)—collaborated on their Platinum-selling second album Doolittle, Bossanova was recorded in Los Angeles as opposed to Pixies’ Boston base (with the exception of the track “Blown Away” that was recorded at the Hansa Tonstudio in Berlin during a European tour in 1989). The album features the singles “Allison” (a tribute to jazz and blues pianist Mose Allison), “Dig For Fire,” and “Velouria” (#4 on Billboard’s Alternative chart), plus the first cover to be included on a Pixies’ album, “Cecilia Ann” (originally by The Surftones).

Bossanova showed a less primal side to the band, with surf and space rock rising to the fore. Lyrically, Black Francis is even more cryptic with a recurring sci-fi theme running throughout, which in turn influenced Vaughan Oliver’s classic planet design for the cover.

As one journalist put it, “Bossanova is a powerful time machine. Listening to the album, one gets flashbacks of what the ’90s sounded, looked and felt like. Even though the decade was far from perfect, it was filled with a feeling of curiosity and optimism—especially regarding the future and its technology. Listening to Bossanova, one is reminded that the world is a more vital place when people are allowed to dream big, fantasize, and be a little bit crazy.”

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In rotation: 6/19/20

Jacksonville, FL | Don’t let the music stop: How First Coast record stores are fighting their way back: Despite being closed as non-essential businesses in mid-March, several of Jacksonville’s locally owned record shops said they’re making solid recoveries now that they’re able to operate again. Whether they’ve been around for less than a year – such as Tiger Records – or more than half a century – such as DJ’s Records Shop – First Coast record retailers faced a significant challenge when non-essential businesses were closed following the Covid-19 pandemic. However, the shops haven’t skipped a beat during reopening. “Everything is great, everything feels like it’s getting back to normal,” said James Siboni, owner of Tiger Records, which is located near Bold Bean. “The café near me just reopened – while they were closed we were a little bit slower than normal – but this week feels like a completely typical week pre-Covid.” Siboni debuted Tiger Records – an 850-square-foot shop located at 875 Stockton St. – in November 2019, and he said the relative youth of his business made closing up shop a frightening prospect.

New York, NY | Record Store Owners Don’t Skip a Beat, Prepare for Reopening: The Limited to One Record Store is the one thing that’s been a constant for co-owners Kristian Sorge and Nichole Porges. The couple was let go from their jobs as casting directors for extras in TV and movies and they lost their main source of income when the coronavirus crisis erupted. “Everything kind of fell apart within a week. I lost my job, I had to file for unemployment for the first time,” said co-owner Nichole Porges. When Governor Cuomo ordered all non-essential businesses to close, the couple had to face the music. They needed the record store to make money, but without physically being open. Before the health crisis they’d focused solely on sales out of their East Village shop. Now they needed to offer an online option and were shocked at the response. “We started selling rare records thru mail order on our Instagram and that had a really positive, we’d sell I’d say, 80 percent of everything posted would sell within minutes,” said co-owner Kristian Sorge.

UK | Love Record Stores: how to help save your local record stores: Over 130 record stores will take part in the 24 hour event on June 20. With the official Record Store Day postponed from June 20 to three dates later in the year (August 29, September 26 and October 24), a new campaign to help support independent record stores through the continuing Coronavirus crisis has popped up and stepped in. Fronted by ambassador and vinyl obsessive Tim Burgess, the Love Record Stores campaign will host a virtual 24-hour in-store event on Saturday, with live performances, interviews, DJ streams and special limited edition releases only available online. Beginning at 7am, highlights of the #LoveRecordStores programme – which has been curated by curated by independent labels including Secretly Canadian, Jagjaguwar, Dead Oceans and ATO Records – include appearances from Four Tet, Fontaines D.C., Laura Marling, Erol Alkan, Khruangbin and Tim Burgess himself. Over 130 record stores from across the UK are taking part, from Chameleon in Aberdeen down to Mr Bongo in Brighton, with special releases from the likes of Oasis, Radiohead, Bon Iver, The Libertines, Robyn and dozens more available to buy online.

New York, NY | Record Mart, Manhattan’s Oldest Record Store, Is Shutting Down: Record Mart recently confirmed the unfortunate news on Facebook, writing: “Sad to say it is the end of era!!” Outside of that brief statement, the famed Times Square subway station record shop hasn’t addressed its closure on the internet. Instead, the store taped a typed message on its entrance (penned by Lou Moskowitz, son of the brand’s co-founder). Citing the pandemic as the chief cause of his store’s closure, Moskowitz thanked customers for their support and signaled that his brand “will be moving into the vintage audio business.” Founded by Jesse Moskowitz and Bob Stack in 1958, Record Mart quickly emerged as one of New York’s foremost distributors of Latin music. Following nine years of suspended operations (between 1998 and 2007) as the Times Square subway station was renovated, Record Mart reopened and achieved relative success. Unfortunately, New York City’s total number of subway riders fell dramatically amid the early portion of the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis and its associated lockdown measures.

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  • SUPPORTING YOUR LOCAL INDIE SHOPS SINCE 2007


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