In rotation: 2/14/20

Barrow, UK | Barrow’s TNT records nominated for another award: A Barrow shop has been shortlisted amongst a host of superstars for one of the most prestigious prizes in the music industry. TNT Records is one of eight finalists in the Independent Retailer category at this year’s Music Week Awards , which recognises the best in the business. The star-studded award ceremony in London on May 6, 2020, will see the management team from the Duke Street shop rubbing shoulders with world-renowned names, with nominees in other categories including the likes of Coldplay, Stormzy and Glastonbury Festival. The nomination in this prestigious award follows in the wake of some similar recognition for TNT Records , when it was recently named UK Record Shop of the Year. Owner and founder Dave Turner said he was stunned when he read that they had made the shortlist for the Music Week Awards 2020. “The Music Week Awards are the biggest awards in the industry, so to see TNT Records shortlisted is beyond my wildest dreams.”

Tokyo, JP | Disk Shop Zero founder Naoki E-Jima has died: The Tokyo record store owner, who passionately promoted the sound of Bristol bass in Japan, passed away yesterday. Naoki E-Jima, the founder and operator of Japanese record store Disk Shop Zero, died yesterday after a bout of illness. Since opening his shop in Ekoda, Tokyo back in 1993, E-Jima—real name Naoki Iijima—championed bass music coming out of Bristol, forging a strong link between the two cities’ scenes. That vision continued when he and a group of friends started their BS0 party in 2015 (they refer to BS0 as a made-up Bristol postcode) and released a series of records on a label of the same name shortly after. In addition to running his shop, Iijima also worked as a music writer. Disk Shop Zero has been intermittently shut since the beginning of the year, after Iijima complained of discomfort in his right thigh last November. The final post on his store’s website indicates he was due to return to hospital on January 21st, which led to emergency hospitalisation and surgery on the 28th.

Tulsa, OK | Vinyl Records Resurrected At Local Record Stores: For the first time in 35 years, vinyl records are expected to outsell CDs in the US. Despite the rise in vinyl sales, streaming music is still the major source of income for the music industry. New numbers this year show vinyl brings in about 4% of the industry’s total revenue while streaming dominates with a whopping 62%. Record store owner Paul Epstein said he thought vinyl had seen its day more than 20 years ago. “Ten or 12 years ago, vinyl started slowly picking up. Then probably five or six years ago, it started at breakneck,” said Epstein. “It has wildly passed CDs.” Written off for dead in 1986, vinyl records are back and poised to outsell CDs nationwide. But why? “You can say I have 50,000 songs that sit in a little box in my underwear drawer, but it’s not the same as saying, ‘look at my records!'” said Epstein.

Franklin, TN | Antique collector inspires a new generation of musicians: Nothing’s ever out of style for long, at least that’s the philosophy of an antique collector in Franklin. “We bought a barn sight on scene in Bowling Green, Kentucky.” Will Jordan is a picker. He picks through stuff that some would call junk, and what he finds often ends up for sale at Carpe Diem. “Seize the day. I mean there’s a lot of days in this place right here, and I think it fits the vibe,” said Jordan. The vibe has a good feel from the time you step inside. “We got all kinds of collectibles in here from in every age group. From a 5-year-old kid to an 85-year-old grandfather,” said Jordan. The most popular by far is Jordan’s collection of vintage vinyl records numbering in the thousands, each with a feeling of nostalgia attached to the cover.

Carlsbad, CA | A record return: Records are managing to remain relevant – in their own sphere of influence. Thomas Edison’s phonograph – his favorite invention – designed to play back audio from one needle, then amplify the sound back to the listener through a flaring horn, was the one to begin the music recording art. Originally, the sound came from wax cylinders that were coated in tin foil, but the technology quickly evolved to the vinyl record and vinyl player, which has since become a staple of the retro, slow dance American period. The phonograph’s distinct trumpet-like horn has amazingly transitioned as a staple first of tall and elegant ballrooms to the average American working-class home. And there, the record player remained stuck; a staple of the past as CDs and newer inventions outpaced sales of vinyl records in the late ’80s for the first time since Edison created the phonograph in the mid 1870s. Vinyl fans were bound to still exist – no trend ever fully dies this quick. And yet, more than just Frank Sinatra devotees are going to the store (the online store really) to pick up vinyl and vinyl players, and the most novel crowd is now becoming vinyl’s biggest supporter: high schoolers.

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