In rotation: 5/16/19

Pittsburgh, PA | Vinyl Remains record store moving to Mt. Lebanon: Vinyl Remains is moving a few miles south on Route 19 to a new location in Mt. Lebanon, the store announced on social media. The record store, opened by Greg and Jennifer Anderson, transplants from New York City, set up shop on Glenmore Avenue in Dormont in 2017. The Dormont location is closing on May 25 and the new location at 692 Washington Road in Mt. Lebanon is aiming to open in July. The new shop will have later hours, as well. Greg said that the new space is in a better position to get more walk-in customers, as there is more foot traffic in that section of Lebo. And he said that there are other retail shops in the area that will help attract customers. The shop specializes in new, old and hard-to-find records. The store also features books and artists’ work.

Pittsburgh, PA | Pittsburgh Record Convention showcases vinyl revival: Vinyl records are often seen as a relic of the past, sitting forgotten in dusty cardboard boxes in various basements. But in recent years vinyl sales have skyrocketed, partially due to popular contemporary artists like Ariana Grande and Panic! At The Disco releasing their new albums on vinyl and popular classic artists like The Rolling Stones re-releasing theirs. The vinyl record has risen again, if Pittsburgh’s biannual Record Convention is any indication. The most recent Record Convention took place on May 11 at the Sokol Club in the South Side. More than 30 vendors and hundreds of attendees gathered to buy and sell records, CDs, cassette tapes and other music memorabilia. Products included vinyl copies of classic rock albums, rap CDs and artwork featuring ’60s bands like The Beatles and The Monkees.

UK | Morrisons joins ERA’s Record Tokens scheme as record shops celebrate continued success of relaunch: ERA have confirmed sales of its Record Tokens in the UK have gone from strength to strength. One year on since their relaunch, more than 100 independent record shops across the UK now stock the new brand tokens. The newest among them is supermarket giant Morrisons, who will be putting Record Tokens on sale in their stores from late summer – with ERA predicting a Q4 boost for indie record shops…“We are delighted to see Morrisons come on board as Record Token stockists,” ERA CEO Kim Bayley told Music Week. “Vinyl and CDs are sought after gifts and with Father’s Day just around the corner and over 500 Morrisons stores putting Record Tokens on sale ahead of Christmas, this will help encourage music fans to discover their local independent shops as more and more people experience the joys of receiving physical music.”

How Record Labels Are Selling Old Music for (Lots of) New Money: A Warner Music Group executive explains why, and how, record labels are suddenly revisiting their staid back catalogs. Ask someone in the music industry how to sell a new single, and you’ll get rambling answers that go on for days — but ask them how to sell a single that was released 25 years ago, from an artist who’s only ever put out one five-track LP and since faded deep into obscurity, and you’ll get far fewer ideas. Thanks to the discovery-led nature of music streaming, however, older music is, for the first time, ripe with new opportunities. Record companies just have to be nimble enough to find them. Tim Fraser-Harding oversees such out-of-the-ordinary initiatives as Warner Music’s president of global catalog of recorded music, where he’s helped shape new marketing strategies for legacy artists like Led Zeppelin and Fleetwood Mac. Fraser-Harding spoke with Rolling Stone about the trials and rewards of reviving old hits.

Green Vinyl Records: In pursuit of making vinyl environmentally-friendly: Vinyl sales are on the rise and as demand for LPs and 12″s rise, the need for environmentally-friendly methods of producing vinyl has become more apparent. That’s where Green Vinyl Records, a group of eight Dutch companies, are working together to develop an environmentally friendly alternative production process for vinyl records. Green Vinyl Records aims to reduce the amount of energy and waste within the vinyl record manufacturing process by developing durable plastics and clean, low-energy injection moulding processes. Vinyl – short for polyvinyl chloride or PVC – is a common plastic polymer used in everything from records to credit cards. The vast majority of new plastics are made from crude oil, although a small but growing proportion are now being made by recycling old plastic.

This book tells the story of former Hacienda DJ Dave Haslam’s 40+ year record collection and why he sold it: “Every record collection reflects our life…” A new book called A Life in Thirty-Five Boxes, by writer, broadcaster and DJ Dave Haslam, tells the history of his vast record collection, and why he decided to sell it. It covers over 40 years through Haslam’s life as a collector – from the first vinyl he bought during the 1970s as a teenager to playing at the Hacienda, where he graced the decks almost 500 times, to the moment when he decided to sell it all. “I didn’t expect that moment to come, and couldn’t predict what happened next,” shares Haslam. A Life in Thirty-Five Boxes marks the first in a collaborative series between Haslam and Configo called Art Decades, exploring subjects ranging from Keith Haring and Sylvia Plath to underground music, homelessness and cultural regeneration. A Life In Thirty Five Boxes is out 13th June via Confingo Publishing.

Vinyl resurgence is good for humanity: For anyone who has been living under a rock for the past few years, there is something important you need to know. Vinyl is back. And no, I am not talking about vinyl trousers or renovating your kitchen, I’m talking about the humble record. Vinyl sales have been growing steadily in Australia for a number of years now and in 2016 the industry made $15.2 million in sales, up from $8.9 million the year before. There has even been a resurgence in people buying cassettes. No, that is not a typo, cassette tape sales grew in the US by 19 per cent in 2018. This resurgence is being spearheaded by us millenials and I am sure that by the time the Grafton waterfront precinct is completed, it will be promptly filled with joggers listening to Nirvana on their Walkmans. Now being a man of the millenials, with my finger firmly on the pulse of what the kids are “down” with, I have come up with a few reasons why the youth are flocking back to the items of yesteryear.

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