In rotation: 12/8/21

Bury, UK | Record store Wax & Beans hosts live music day in Bury: A venue in Bury is taking centre stage for a major music showcase today. The Charlatans frontman Tim Burgess has been curating record fairs across Greater Manchester for the past couple of years. This has culminated in the most ambitious gathering to date, with Market Street’s Wax & Beans delivering six live acts, topped up by homegrown act Urban Theory. The rundown for the Bury leg kicks off with Cold Water Swimmers at noon, before Pageant Mum take to the stage at 1.30pm, Izzy at 2.30pm, Clouds and Errors an hour later, alt-folkster Granfalloon and Urban Theory from 6pm. Urban Theory played a well-received set, headlining the second stage at Head for the Hills in September. The outfit also slotted in an intimate gig at Wax & Beans and an acoustic set at The Met in November.

Winnipeg, CA | Taking a new concept out for a spin: Osborne Village mainstay Urban Waves finds adding vinyl records — Old Gold Vintage Vinyl — a success. If you haven’t visited Osborne Village mainstay Urban Waves lately, don’t be alarmed when you’re met by thousands of vinyl albums, the next time you poke your head through the front door. Pivot has become a bit of a catchword during COVID, what with scores of people switching careers, addresses… even partners. (“Why the pandemic is causing spikes in break-ups and divorces,” screamed a recent, BBC headline.) It would appear pivot is the name of the game at Urban Waves, as well. In early November a new, exterior sign went up there, announcing the presence of Old Gold Vintage Vinyl, a quality, used record shop that had already been on site in one form or another for a little over two years. No need to worry, Michele Arcand, Urban Waves’ founder, assures longtime customers initially perplexed by her and co-owner Brent Jackson’s store-within-a-store concept; neither she nor her array of pop culture paraphernalia, hand-crafted jewelry and funky, fashion accessories are going anywhere, any time soon.

Fort Madison, IA | Record store owners finding FM “feels kinda good.” A couple seasoned in global commerce are finding a very comfortable place in a small shop in Fort Madison. Mike and Allison (Pickard) Park opened Pool 19 Plants and Records in August and are enjoying the resurgence of the retail feel in downtown Fort Madison. The two opened the store in the Hesse Building which also houses Corks and Barrels, and Harvestville Farm Mercantile and have developed a following in just four months. But co-owner Mike Park said some people still come in not knowing they are there. Park is former news consultant with Twitter and Allison has had national success in marketing campaigns while working on the east and west coasts, and living in Japan. He said Allison’s parents wanted to move out of their larger home and the timing worked well for the two to move back to Fort Madison into the home. Allison’s father Jerry was an English teacher at Fort Madison High School for 35 years and Mike said the shop has been effective at rekindling memories of Allison’s childhood.

New York, NY | NYC’s midtown gets a cool indie makeover with hip new shops and restaurants: If you’re dreading the holiday trudge through touristy midtown this season, you’re in for a surprise: Rockefeller Center is rockin’! Tucked behind the Art Deco façade of 30 Rockefeller Plaza, in a space stuffed with some 10,000 vinyl records, there now lives a rock lover’s paradise. Rough Trade, an independent record store from London, opened at 30 Rock in June after closing its Williamsburg location in March. It’s helping usher in an edgy vibe to the long-stodgy area, bringing live performances to the outdoor Plaza and inside the famed 65th-floor Rainbow Room alike. Last month, the rarified venue played host to British post-punk band Dry Cleaning and Brooklyn’s The Muckers. “I feel like it brings a lot of indie and alternative artists to [those who wouldn’t] necessarily hear or see them,” said 24-year-old shopper and East Harlem resident Christian Salhany, of the store’s presence…

Liverpool, UK | Jacaranda Records launches huge music competition with a little help from Sean Ono Lennon and Yoko Ono: Jacaranda Records launches huge music competition with a little help from Sean Ono Lennon and Yoko Ono. Jacaranda Records is offering you the chance to get your hands on one of only 50 limited edition copies of Happy Xmas (War Is Over) – hand cut at Abbey Road Studios – by entering a paid prize draw that could help find Liverpool’s next great music legend. The team have been gifted a rare and collectible limited edition vinyl acetate by Sean Ono Lennon and Yoko Ono (machine signed by Yoko) to mark the 50th Anniversary of the song. As one of just 25 independent record stores to receive this amazing gesture they plan to raise as much money as possible to support grass roots music in Liverpool. Tickets for the raffle will cost £10 each and the winner will be chosen at 1pm on Christmas Eve.

Kansas City, MI | Kansas City bands are waiting months for vinyl records. It’s more than a ‘supply chain’ problem: It’s hard to get a record made right now, unless you’re Adele. But what, exactly, are the “supply chain issues” keeping vinyl out of indie bands’ hands? The experience of Kansas City band Frogpond offers an illuminating look into this complex problem. Frogpond, Kansas City’s legendary four-woman rock band, took the stage last weekend for the first time since the year 2000. The show, at recordBar downtown, doubled as a record release party for their new album Time Thief. This gig had been sold out since practically the moment it was announced. Drummer Michelle Bacon, who joined Frogpond right before the pandemic, was in high school during the band’s original heyday. “They were one of the only local bands I remember being played on the radio,” she recalls. So for her, becoming part of the band for this grand return was a revelation. “We all got up on stage just to check our instruments and people started screaming,” Bacon says. “And like every song, almost every song, people were singing along. I’ve never had that experience before.”

Fort Collins, CO | Truck smashes through wall of popular Fort Collins record store: A popular Fort Collins record store is on the mend after a vehicle crashed into the shop on Saturday (Dec. 4) night. According to a Facebook post from Bizarre Bazaar Books & Music, the incident occurred around 10 p.m., when a red pickup truck lost control on College Avenue and smashed through the southwest corner of the store. Thankfully, no one — including the truck driver and a passenger — sustained any injuries in the accident. The store noted that the driver had fallen asleep at the wheel and that they were not under the influence at the time of the incident. However, the crash did cause significant damage to the shop’s third room, which contains CDs, vinyl records, books, and a Darth Vader figurine. Members of Bizarre Bazaar’s staff came in on Sunday (Dec. 5) to clean up the third room and make it accessible to the public. A professional restoration team is currently working to return the store to normal. “Was quite a night. Glad that no one was hurt. Except Darth Vader,” said the store.

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