Category Archives: A morning mix of news for the vinyl inclined

In rotation: 2/21/20

Here’s the List of Record Store Day 2020 Releases Revealed So Far: There are apparently exclusives from Neil Young, David Bowie, Gorillaz, Black Sabbath and more. Record Store Day is gearing up for its main 2020 event, and we are already getting an idea what exclusives to expect this year. While the official 2020 RSD list has yet to be revealed, several artists and labels have started announcing titles, while other rumoured releases have begun popping up online. To start making sense of it all, we’ve assembled a list of both the official and rumoured Record Store Day 2020 releases revealed so far. In large part, the list comes thanks to the dedicated vinyl fanatics over on Reddit, who have been slowly but surely putting this year’s RSD list together. As you’ll see below, the 2020 RSD list is still very much in its early stages, but there are already plenty of notable releases incoming.

Farmers Branch, TX | Josey Records To Become the Largest Record Store in Texas: The Farmers Branch shop is adding 10,000-square-feet to its already sizable footprint. Josey Records is taking over the 10,000-square-foot space next door to its 15,000-square-foot flagship store in Farmers Branch, making it the largest record store in Texas and one of the five largest record stores in the country. The shop plans to open its expansion for Record Store Day on April 18, 2020. Josey Records started in Dallas and has opened satellite stores in Lubbock, Tulsa, Kansas City, and Sedalia, Missouri, but it didn’t have any plans to grow in the DFW market until an opportunity presented itself. “The tenant next door used to be a motorcycle supply shop, and they moved out in the summer, so we thought we would just take it over and add more square footage to the store,” says co-owner Waric Cameron. “We have tons of inventory that we don’t have out on display that we keep in offsite storage, so this is an opportunity to bring all that to the retail floor.”

NJ | ‘An absolute nightmare’: How a distribution crisis is crippling N.J. record stores: Record stores across New Jersey are suffering from a problem that feels almost as vintage as the weathered shops themselves: their vinyl and CD deliveries are late — really late. “I just got in Christmas records — I ordered them in October,” says Susan Grimm, a manager at Scotti’s Record Shop in Summit. “We’re getting orders we placed two or three months ago, it’s an absolute nightmare,” says Princeton Record Exchange owner Jon Lambert, echoing a sentiment felt by stores throughout the Garden State, and beyond, who after years spent battling industry trends that have shifted away from physical media in favor of iTunes and streaming, now grapple with a new dilemma: a profit-hemorrhaging break in the supply chain…“We’ve had to take a significant percentage hit in our profit,” says another New Jersey shop owner, who asked not to be named. “… (Direct Shot) doesn’t know what they’re doing, and I don’t know what the endgame is.”

Jamaica Plain, MA | New Biz: Bakery + Coffee Shop + Record Store = Monumental Market: A unique business venture recently opened on South Street. Monumental Market is a joint venture between three different businesses: Lavender Bee Baking Co., El Colombiano Coffee, and Light of Day Records. The individual businesses are known entities in our area. El Colombiano Coffee and Light of Day Records are both regular vendors at the Egleston Farmers Market. While building their brands, the two businesses traveled to different businesses, including the Wake Up The Earth Festival. Light of Day sells new and vintage vinyl records. It joins a growing list of businesses that sell vinyl records in JP, including Deep Thoughts and Tres Gatos, which is also a tapas restaurant. Lavender Bee Baking Co. makes peanut and tree-nut free baked goods. Lavender’s owner Kelsey Munger was diagnosed with a peanut and tree nut allergy at the age of 6, and eventually started baking because it was hard to find baked goods that didn’t include what she couldn’t eat. This is the first brick and mortar storefront for all three businesses.

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In rotation: 2/20/20

Milwaukee, WI | Off The Beaten Path’s new South Milwaukee store is now open: Following more than six years on Farwell Avenue on Milwaukee’s East Side and just shy of three years on Howell Avenue in Bay View, Off The Beaten Path is on the move again. The independent record store now has a new home in the heart of South Milwaukee. The shop’s new location—its third site since the store’s 2011 start—quietly opened at 1219 Milwaukee Avenue last weekend. Off The Beaten Path’s last day in business at its Bay View shop was November 8 of last year. Originally expected to re-open its new space in time for Black Friday, the record store’s return comes after months of unexpected delays. However, owner Chris Kruse says he’s “especially looking forward to having some live music” in the store and that the new location will be worth the wait. Starting today, the shop will resume its regular hours of noon to 7 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. And yes, there will deep discounts on used records from time to time.

London, UK | New independent record store, Yo-Yo Records, to open in London: The store will break away from Cosmos Records London. A new independent record store is set to open in London. Placing a bigger focus on dance and reggae music, as well as 12″s and 7″ singles generally, Cosmos Records London – which originally opened back in 2015 – will re-launch as an independent store, Yo-Yo Records, in Hackney on 21st February. Posting on Instagram on Monday 17th February, owners said, “It is with a heavy heart that we would like to announce our upcoming split from Cosmos Records here in London as of closing time this evening, and we will reopen on Friday here at our same location on Hackney Road as a new independent shop.” They continued: “We have nothing but respect and admiration for Cosmos, and it has been an honour and a pleasure to represent the shop here in London for almost five years, but after my 20-year apprenticeship with Cosmos it is time we head out on our own.”

Loveland, OH | Loveland record label lands movie deal: Valentine’s Day was sweeter this year for a Loveland business who landed their part in the newly-released and very popular Sonic the Hedgehog movie. Adding to the love, Loveland-based Plaid Room Records, and their associated business, Colemine Records, a full-fledged record label with approximately 45 acts signed, celebrated their fifth year open here. The movie opened on February 14, stars Jim Carrey and had a $58 million opening weekend – finishing atop the weekend box office. With this movie release and other happenings, it’s safe to say Plaid Room Records co-owners Terry Cole and his brother, Bob Cole, would like to curl up into a ball and run at supersonic speeds, just like the iconic hedgehog from popular Sega videogames and depicted in the movie – just to keep up. “It’s a big deal. It’s cool,” Terry said.

Saratoga Springs, NY | Annual Record Riot offers music memorabilia for shoppers to explore: Record Riot returns to the Spa City this weekend with thousands of LPs, CDs, 45s and other music memorabilia for shoppers to explore. The event is scheduled for 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 23 at the Saratoga Springs City Center, located at 522 Broadway in downtown Saratoga Springs. Early admission begins at 8 a.m., for those who want to be the first to browse. This option costs $10. Admission during regular show hours is $3 per person. Skidmore students get in for free. Some lucky eventgoers will win surprise door prizes. Sunday’s event will feature about 25 vendors, who plan to bring a total of 40 tables filled with merchandise. Record Riot organizer Stephen Gritzan, who owns a small record shop in New Jersey, began presenting events like this about 15 years ago. Today, he organizes Record Riots throughout New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Connecticut, in “places that meet certain demographics of arts and culture,” he said.

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In rotation: 2/19/20

Lincoln City, OR | Output Music reopening in Lincoln City, owners make big plans for 2020: Output Music was a music community cornerstone for Lincoln County from 2005 to 2011. Now, 2020 will see Output reopening as Output Records. Lincoln City’s new again music store will sell vinyl records, turntables, music accessories and a curated selection of clothing, homegoods and accessories. The owners, Corrie and Taj Richardson, say they want to help the Central Oregon Coast get into vinyl records. “The music format has made a big comeback over the last 10 years; we’re selling turntables too, so if someone doesn’t have one already, we can get them set up with a turntable, speakers, and their first record for around $150 bucks,” the Richardsons said. Beyond selling records and goods, Output Records has a mission statement that focuses on building the music community on the Central Oregon Coast. “A big part of us wanting to reopen Output is to build up a music community that gets the kids involved with music,” the Richardson’s said.

Bury, UK | Vinyl frontier – Bury at forefront of record revival: …This renewed interest has also cultivated a renaissance in high street record shops, reversing years of decline and closures which saw dealers outside major cities almost go extinct. Last summer new independent record store Wax and Beans opened at The Art Picture House ­in Haymarket Street and proved in instant smash hit. Voracious appetite for vinyl has meant the outlet is already drawing up blueprints to relocate to larger premises to better meet the needs of Bury’s music lovers. Ben Soothill, Wax and Beans’ owner, said: “I think interest in vinyl has always been there, it’s just that it has not been completely accessible. “With the push we have given it on social media and the service we provide in store I think it has struck a chord with people. “They realise it’s there, and it’s a format they have loved, and it’s really taken off.

Boston, MA | Monumental Market: Jamaica Plain’s Antidote to Spotify and Starbucks: Ask anyone who’s scoured through endless rows of vinyl in subterranean vaults during the 90s and they’ll be the first to tell you that independent record stores in Boston are a pale reflection of a once robust heyday. Second Coming Records? Dead. Pipeline Records? Dead. Mojo? Long dead. Newbury Comics? Thankfully flatlining. Even the venerable Skippy White’s—whose six-decade longevity is one of the more unique phenomena to occur during the fray of the “death of independent music retailer” ballyhoo—announced its imminent departure in December. … In Your Ear, Planet and Nuggets have collectively endured close to a century’s worth of changes in both shopping habits and the music industry. The aforementioned specialty shops like Armageddon and Deep Thoughts continue to thrive specifically because of their appeal to otherwise marginal tastes. It’s not about resurgence, but an enduring need for the tactile.

Pittsburgh, PA | Us: Turntable Doctor hopes to keep vinyl spinning: Both guys liked things that go round and round. But when the two friends parted ways as business partners 47 years ago, one landed a job with the Hubble Space Telescope, which goes round and round 340 miles above Earth, while the other continued making sure that record albums continue rotating 33⅓, 45 and 78 rpm on turntables. Today we’re focused on Vince Bomba, 63, of Mt. Lebanon, who still repairs turntables at Galaxie Electronics in Squirrel Hill, a Murray Avenue business that shares a second floor with Jerry’s Records (which sells the vinyl albums that Vince’s turntables play.) Walk up those steps and — Biff! Ping! Bam! — you’re in a time warp. Nowadays most turntable repairmen are fossils. From 1990 until 2007, turntables teetered on the brink of technological extinction that claimed cassettes, manual typewriters and pay phones. But like Alec Baldwin, vinyl has a knack for resurrection.

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In rotation: 2/18/20

Burlington, VT | Soundbites: Lacking Lacquer? This week, multiple music news outlets reported a catastrophic fire at Apollo Masters in Banning, Calif. The facility produces “the lacquer used in the production of master discs, from which commercial vinyl records are made, as well as the styli used in the pressing process,” according to Consequence of Sound. The blog went on to report that “the loss could lead to a major delay or reduction in the production of vinyl records on a worldwide scale.” That got me thinking: Will this calamity trickle down to our local Burlington Record Plant? The word from the plant’s owner Justin Crowther is: maybe, but probably not. “At this time, I’m not really concerned, considering our size, but it’s too early to know for sure,” he wrote in an email. He explained that, of the two main lacquer cutting engineers used by the plant, one sources exclusively through MDC Master Lacquers, a Japanese company. Crowther says they are taking orders as normal for the time being…

Redditch, UK | Happy birthday to ya! Vintage Trax to host day of music and much more: Redditch retro record shop Vintage Trax is celebrating its fifth anniversary this weekend – and everyone is invited to the party. The independent record shop grew out of two pop-up shops in the Kingfisher Shopping Centre before finding a home on Birchfield Road, Headless Cross near the birthplace of Led Zeppelin drummer and famous son John Bonham. Now customers come from far and wide as well as locally to browse the racks of records and cassettes as well as CDs. “It’s not been an easy year by any means with rising costs and increased competition from record fairs and online sellers but we are holding our own,” said owner Ros Sidaway. “There is no better experience than coming into a record shop and digging through the crates of albums and trays of 45s, and finding something you’ve been searching for.”

Ashville, NC | TODAY: A benefit event for Australia held at Static Age Records: “The art show starts at 7 p.m. At 9:30 p.m., performances from local bands will start. The line-up includes Moves, Daddy’s Credit card, 13ag H3ad, and Mouth Breathers. All of these bands are local and coming out to support the cause. Owner of Static Age Records, Jessie McSwane opened his store 12 years ago, events like these happen often at his store. “It seems like every few months we have some type of benefit event going on,” McSwane said. He is excited about this upcoming event and hopes that students and locals come and participate… Static age is first and foremost a record store. In recent years, the store has expanded to musical events and art events. Static Age has about 20 to 25 shows a month, the charitable work associated with the benefit was something McSwane was interested in. He hopes this event helps bring attention to the foundation itself as well as the cause.“It seemed like an organization we could get behind,” McSwane said. While the owner of Static Age often hosts events such as this, to him it’s only the beginning.

The New Rules of Music Snobbery: Hulu’s High Fidelity reboot captures the end of elitist condescension and the rise of fervent eclecticism. …A less perceptive reboot would simply have made Ed Sheeran the new sentimental, tacky crap, but Hulu has gone beyond grafting contemporary references onto Hornby’s tale of 30-somethings who are more adept at sequencing mixtapes than at maintaining healthy relationships. The series captures a fundamental reorientation in listening these days: Elitist condescension about musical preferences isn’t cool anymore, but maybe—die-hard fans fear—obsessing and connecting over music are no longer cool either. Barry-types once used their taste to prop themselves above the less erudite, mainstream-minded listeners they mocked. Cherise, by contrast, just wants to chat about a song—and the consumer, cozy in a private digital bubble, decidedly does not.

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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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In rotation: 2/13/20

Santa Barbara, CA | Record shops allow a space for music lovers to find community: When I place a record on a turntable and the soft static begins to play through my speakers, I let my mind drift and begin reflecting on the role music has played in my life. My family instilled a love of music in me at a very young age. My father played classical music and began taking me to concerts when I was three. He would pull out his old acoustic guitar and play trios and mariachi, while my mother would play cumbia and reggaeton. For as long as I can remember music was a form of expression. It was my love language. My love affair with vinyl records, however, did not begin until October of 2017, when I purchased “Joy Division – Roots (Live at the Roots Club)” at Just Play Music.

Hamilton, CA | ‘It felt like home’: After 40 years as a downtown landmark Cheapies is closing: ‘It feels like part of Hamilton is leaving,’ says long-time customer Stephanie Silva. As Brian Jasson looked out over the crowded aisles of Cheapies on Sunday afternoon, he was transported back to the days when his store was packed this way every day of the week, with music lovers poring over albums and picking through records. Outside the shop the iconic florescent sign with the offering of “Music, Games, Video” still flashed above King Street East, just as it has for the past 40-odd years. But the massive front windows, traditionally festooned with advertisements for the hottest singles were papered over with big red letters announcing “STORE CLOSING.” For some, those two words explain why the store was filled to the brim with shoppers hoping to score a final deal before the doors close for the last time at the end of March. But, if you listen closely, there’s another reason why so many devoted customers are making the pilgrimage to the downtown staple before Cheapies Records and Tapes shuts down forever.

Nightmares on Wax celebrates ‘Smokers Delight’ 25th anniversary with album reissue, announces upcoming tour: Nightmares on Wax has announced a reissue of his seminal LP ‘Smokers Delight’ with new music and he will be giving special shows in North America and Europe. English DJ and record producer Nightmares on Wax has given fans a host of things to look forward to in 2020: the studio album ‘Smokers Delight’ gets a full reissue, never-before-heard tracks and select special shows in North America and Europe. The news comes in celebration of the seminal LP’s 25th anniversary. You can check the tour dates and tracklist below. ‘Smokers Delight’ was amongst the genre-defining albums that inspired generations of music that would follow, such as Massive Attack’s ‘Blue Lines’, Portishead’s ‘Dummy’ and ‘Maxinquaye’ by Tricky. The downbeat club album mustered all laidback energies of after-hours nightlife with smooth bassy grooves in a fusion of soul, hip-hop and dub for which Nightmares on Wax has become renowned.

Cleveland, OH | Don’t call it a comeback: Music Saves space to be revived as Cleveland Rocks Shop on Waterloo: With the recent openings of Pop Life and Six Shooter Coffee’s new location, Waterloo Road seems to be hitting a high note lately—and Beachland Ballroom owner Cindy Barber has big plans to keep it rocking and rolling. This week, Barber plans to announce an ioby fundraising campaign to mount the Cleveland Rocks Shop, a retail space showcasing local music and honoring its past, present, and future. Housed inside the former Music Saves record store (which shuttered in late 2017), Barber sees the Cleveland Rocks Shop as the next step in creating a campus of sorts as an extension of the Beachland Ballroom. “The whole idea is to energize our music economy in Cleveland,” says Barber. “When I was a kid, I worked at record distribution houses, and back then, we were one of the top record markets in the country, thanks to [legendary DJs like] Alan Freed, Bill Randle, and WMMS. I’m hoping in some small way to recapture and honor some of that rich history and energy.”

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In rotation: 2/12/20

Portland, OR | How Will the Fire At Apollo Masters Affect the Local Music Industry? Last Wednesday, news broke of a fire at Apollo Masters, the California-based business that was one of only two factories in the world that produced the lacquer used in the creation of master discs—one of the first steps in the manufacture of a vinyl album. While all the employees made it out safely, as the company posted on their website, their “manufacturing and storage facility… suffered catastrophic damage.” “We are uncertain of our future at this point,” the statement continued, “and are evaluating options as we try to work through this difficult time.” The repercussions of this blaze look to be massive and couldn’t come at a worse time. According to a report released via Billboard last month, vinyl records made up 26% of all physical albums sold in 2019. And record labels were already adjusting to the recent closure of Rainbo Records, the 80-year-old pressing plant that had been one of the largest producers of vinyl in the US.

Hamilton, CA | Hamilton’s legendary record store Cheapies is closing in March: The downtown fixture on King Street East has been around since 1980. It had to feel good — and bad, at the same time — “bittersweet,” as Brian Jasson likes to put it. Saturday afternoon, a lineup more than 20 people long at the cash register, and three or four times that many browsing through the store. They were riffling through records, bumping into old friends, discovering musical treasures they didn’t know existed. And saying goodbye. Last days at Cheapies. Sounds like a movie title almost. The legendary, long-lived record store on King Street East is closing. March 27 is the scheduled last day. “Friday, the lineup was right out the door,” said Jasson, who started selling records on King East in 1978, during the screaming apogee of punk rock. If you let yourself, you could almost imagine away all the taste and technical changes that have happened in our music-buying habits over the last decades and believe you had walked into the way we were.

16 Vinyl Records That Will Make You Want to Listen on Repeat: From Billie Eilish to Lizzo and Maggie Rogers, this past year brought us some musical gems that we’ll be listening to for a long time. If you’re a true music-lover, though, you know there’s just something about listening to a record on vinyl. Not only is it a cool experience altogether, but it also gives you a new appreciation for the artistry behind making music. If you thought you could only get older music on vinyl, think again! These 16 records belong in everyone’s collection, and they’re all available at Urban Outfitters. Are you as in love with Harry Styles’s new album as we are? Well, you can now buy it on vinyl. Listening to Tyler, the Creator on vinyl is about as cool as it gets, and Lewis Capaldi’s album is a masterpiece. No matter what kind of music you’re into, you can find something you love on vinyl, and these are the ones we’d recommend grabbing ASAP.

Atlanta, GA | High Fidelity takes over Criminal Records: Atlanta’s Little Five Points record store, Criminal Records, will be taken over in anticipation of the release of the new Hulu series, “High Fidelity,” starring Zoe Kravitz. Hulu has partnered with Spotify to create a “Love Anthem Generator” where you will swipe to find your unique “Love Anthem.” Join us Thursday through Saturday (1 p.m. – 7 p.m.) You might even walk away with some FREE swag! In conjunction with the takeover, Hulu has partnered with the local Atlanta chapter of the national music education non-profit, Little Kids Rock and will donate 50% of all gross sales made at Criminal Records during the three-day takeover. “High Fidelity” premieres Friday (2/14) at 10 p.m. EST exclusively on Hulu.

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In rotation: 2/11/20

Your Vinyl Record Collection May Have Just Tripled In Value: A tragic fire means that new pressing of vinyl records will decrease, world wide. If you’re the kind of person who loves listening to music on an actual record player, there’s good news and bad news. The bad news is that there might suddenly be a worldwide vinyl record shortage. The good news is that this may increase the value of the vinyl records you already own. Here’s what’s going on. On Friday, Pitchfork reported that Apollo Masters — a manufacturer of lacquer — had a fire that completely destroyed their facilities. This means that one of the only makers of lacquer in the world is not in a position to help create new records. According to Ben Blackwell (quoted in Pitchfork), “this fire will present a problem for the vinyl industry worldwide.” Why? Well, although the early 21st century has seen a spike in the vinyl record industry, the fact is, it’s still relatively niche. This means, beyond Apollo Masters, the only other major producer of lacquer is a company called MCD, based in Japan. And according to Blackwell, they had a tough time keeping up with demand even before this happened.

Denver, CO | Vinyl records strike gold in Colorado as sales poised to surpass CDs for the first time in decades: Vinyl outselling CDs. We love music in Colorado! Now there’s a blast from the past, that’s turning into cash for local record stores. For the first time in 35 years, vinyl records are expected to outsell CDs in the U.S., and Colorado is no exception. Paul Epstein, owner of Twist and Shout on Colfax, 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. Epstein said in today’s streaming age, people are coming back to the physical appeal and sound of classic vinyl. Records and record players are his top sellers.

Shibuya, JP | Second Bloody Angle Dougen Tong Vinyl Café Bar Opens in Shibuya: A café by day and a record bar by night. MC/Producer Ryuzo has opened a second “Bloody Angle Dougen Tong” vinyl café, located in a back ally of Dogenzaka street of Shibuya. Inspired by classic Japanese styled coffee shops, the location serves caffeinated beverages, hot sandwiches, spaghetti and other refreshments from 8 am to 8 pm. Then from 8 pm, the cafe transforms into a record bar where patrons sip alcohol while listening to carefully curated records. Many influential figures, such as Poggy, Verdy, and Kosuke Kawamura attended the opening of Bloody Angle Dougen Tong’s grand opening as well. The interior was designed by Japanese graphic artist Yoshirotten and features the store’s signature retro atmosphere, with contemporary red fixtures reminiscent of the Showa era. Customers can also find Bloody Angle merchandise such as tumblers, key chains, lighters, mugs, hoodies, T-shirts and more exclusively at this location.

Chicago, IL | Chicago Humanities Festival offers sneak peek of ‘High Fidelity’ series: Fans of the hit movie “High Fidelity” and the Nick Hornby book of the same name have the opportunity to get a look at the first two episodes of Hulu’s new “High Fidelity” television series. Chicago Humanities Festival will host a public screening of the first two episodes of the show at 7 p.m. Feb. 12 at Thalia Hall, 1807 S. Allport St., Chicago. A Q&A with Da’Vine Joy Randolph, one of the stars of the series, will be featured after the screening. Randolph, who appeared in the film “Dolemite Is My Name,” also starred as Oda Mae Brown in the Broadway production of “Ghost the Musical.” As film lovers will remember, the movie “High Fidelity” told the story of a Chicago record store owner, played by John Cusack, who sells vinyl records in an age where new technology is all the rage. He deals with a failing business, romance hardships and the uncertainties of life. In the new series, Zoe Kravitz is the record store owner and the locale is now Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Actress Kravitz is the daughter of musician Lenny Kravitz and actress Lisa Bonet, who starred in “The Cosby Show.”

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In rotation: 2/10/20

“Devastating” Manufacturing Plant Fire Threatens Worldwide Vinyl Record Supply: Third Man Records’ Ben Blackwell says the destruction of Apollo Masters’ California facility “will present a problem for the vinyl industry worldwide.” Apollo Masters—a manufacturing plant that supplies the lacquer used for making master discs, which are used to make vinyl records—suffered a fire on Thursday, February 6, at its manufacturing and storage facility in Banning, California, The Desert Sun reports. No employees were injured in the “devastating” blaze, which completely destroyed the facility. A note on Apollo Masters’ website reads, “We are uncertain of our future at this point and are evaluating options as we try to work through this difficult time.” Figures in the vinyl record production industry have expressed similar concern. “From my understanding, this fire will present a problem for the vinyl industry worldwide,” Ben Blackwell, co-founder of Third Man Records told Pitchfork in an email. “There are only TWO companies that make lacquers in the world, and the other, MDC in Japan, already had trouble keeping up with demand BEFORE this…”

Vinyl Record Industry Fears ‘Vinylgeddon’ After Fire Burns Down Apollo Masters Plant: The California plant is one of only two in the world that manufactures lacquers, vital to the production of vinyl records. The manufacturing and storage facility for Apollo Masters Corp. — a Banning, Calif.-based manufacturing plant that supplies the lacquer used for making master discs, which are then used to create vinyl records — has burned down in a massive fire, the company confirmed in a statement posted to its official website. “To all of [our] wonderful customers. It is with great sadness we report the Apollo Masters manufacturing and storage facility had a devastating fire and suffered catastrophic damage,” the statement reads. “The best news is all of our employees are safe. We are uncertain of our future at this point and are evaluating options as we try to work through this difficult time. Thank you for all of the support over the years and the notes of encouragement and support we have received from you all.” The fire, which was first reported around 8 a.m. PT Friday morning (Feb. 7), broke out while employees were inside the building, though all escaped safely, according to The Desert Sun, which first reported the blaze. But the loss of the plant — which, along with MDC in Japan, is one of only two worldwide that produces the lacquers needed to create vinyl records — comes as a difficult blow to the booming vinyl record industry.

Vinyl Alliance gains ground to ‘strengthen the position’ of records: The newly-formed group has the likes of Audio Technica and Sony Music as members. Vinyl Alliance is a new group that has formed to help ‘strengthen the position of vinyl records in a digital world’ – and it’s just made headway by appointing an executive board. The group has Audio-Technica, Pro-Ject, Sony Music, Universal Music Group, Analogue Foundation, GZ Media and Ortofon as members, and aims to ‘promote vinyl records as a modern way to consume music.’ Nike Koch of Sony Music Entertainment, and Audio-Technica’s Kurt Van Scoy are among the board members. An announcement regarding new memberships is expected to be made soon, according to Digital Music News. It’s early days for the Vinyl Alliance, but it’s been formed to nurture the vinyl industry, which has of course flourished since the ‘vinyl revival’ kicked off several years ago, and help boost consumers’ appreciation of the format in an increasingly digital world.

​Hamilton, CA | ​Hamilton Record Store Cheapies to Close Next Month: Long-running Hamilton record store Cheapies is the latest music retailer to shutter its doors. The King St. institution will permanently close in March. Owner Brian Jasson revealed the sad news with a social media post this morning. “It is with a heavy heart that I must formally announce, after owning and operating Cheapies for 40 years in downtown Hamilton, the store will permanently close on or before March 27th 2020.” Jasson purchased the store in 1980, which was called Record & Tape Warehouse at the Time. In recent years, the shop has sold new and used vinyl, as well as CDs, films and pop culture merchandise. It also served as the set for Arkells’ “11:11” video.

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In rotation: 2/7/20

Union City, NJ | Promoting local musical talent is shop owners’ cup of tea: Musicians Jonathan Rivera and Jay Herrera combined two of their passions a few months ago and opened one of Union City’s most singular stores, Arawax Records & Teas. Located at 601 11th St., just off Bergenline Avenue, the small shop offers vinyl records as well as a collection of organic teas, art, books and apparel. It also hosts DJ sets by local emcees and a video podcast called “Shop Sessions.” On Friday, Feb. 7, Arawax will participate in a tribute to the late rapper J. Dilla by sponsoring a free show at 414 38th St., Union City, with DJ sets and live music. “We decided to take everything we care about and turn it into this store,” co-owner Rivera said. “We’re really into vinyl and we both have our own collections. We just wanted to do something that reflects what we want to do with music as our careers. We’re just spreading the musical knowledge we have to the community.” But Arawax is much more than a record store.

Lafayette, IN | West Lafayette’s ‘new downtown’ plan panned by property owners who see city muscling in: The longer Jim Pasdach sat listening to city planners talk Monday night about a proposed West Lafayette Downtown Plan – one meant to shape the look and feel of the city’s Village and Levee areas over the next half-century – the madder he got. Halfway through what turned out to be an hourlong discussion in front of the West Lafayette City Council, Pasdach, owner of JL Records at 380 Brown St., said he’d had enough. “See that blue line?” Pasdach asked, on this way out of the makeshift city council chambers at the former Happy Hollow Elementary. The blue line was part of a grid of imaginary blocks superimposed over existing businesses and parking lots in the Levee Plaza meant in the proposed plan to give the area between River Road and the Wabash River more of a traditional downtown feel, on par with the layout of streets in downtown Lafayette.

A new book looks over the environmental toll of music consumption: An excerpt of Kyle Devine’s Decomposed: The Political Ecology of Music appeared in The Guardian this week. “…PVC contains carcinogenic chemicals, and the operation produces toxic wastewater that the company has been known to pour into the Chao Phraya River according to Greenpeace, which says TPC has ‘a history of environmental abuses’ going back to the early ’90s,” Devine writes, going on to note that stateside PVC manufacturing in the ’70s also led to illegal pollution including “exposing workers to toxic fumes, releasing toxic chemicals into the air and dumping toxic wastewater down the drain.” Online streaming, however, does not present a responsible alternative according to Devine: “[Streaming music relies] on infrastructures of data storage, processing and transmission that have potentially higher greenhouse gas emissions than the petrochemical plastics used in the production of more obviously physical formats such as LPs. To stream music is to burn coal, uranium and gas.

Questions for a Wedding D.J.: Monique Proctor, who changed her name to DJ Smiles Davis 11 years ago, talks about playlists, fees and her favorite wedding moments. Monique Proctor became known as DJ Smiles Davis 11 years ago. “My career as a D.J. happened organically,” said Ms. Davis, 35, who grew up in Grand Rapids, Mich., in the 1980s and was introduced to music at her grandparents’ record store there. In her early 20s, she began working at Amoeba Music, where she was in charge of organizing cassettes and doing inventory at one store. “I’d take home 10 CDs a day and burn them,” she said. “During that time, my neighbor had a turntable and I become obsessed with mixing vinyls. [DJ or not, the plural of vinyl is vinyl. —Ed.] It was stimulating and exciting. I started doing parties and that took off.” At 24, Ms. Davis left Amoeba to become a D.J. full time. By then she had amassed a collection of more than 100,000 songs. And during the last seven years she has worked at more than 200 weddings. In addition, she has been a D.J. for various celebrities, including Martha Stewart, Gwen Stefani and Bruno Mars, and has performed at Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival.

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In rotation: 2/6/20

Montreal, CA | Montreal record shops blame ‘archaic’ rule dating back to 1970s for lost sales: Phonopolis co-owner is glad city plans to allow longer opening hours, but he’s still stuck with hefty fines. On an average Saturday in Mile End, customers start trickling into Phonopolis record stores late in the morning or in the early afternoon. Co-owner Nick Kirschner said the shop’s peak hours are usually late afternoon, and people will happily shop into the evening. That’s why he was surprised to learn about an old rule on the books that forbids him from staying open past 5 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. It was on record store day — of all days — in April 2019 that an inspector walked into Phonopolis and informed staff of the rules governing opening hours. Kirschner later received $2,950 worth of fines in the mail. He​​​​​​​ said running a small business in Montreal is difficult enough, especially in a neighbourhood where high rents are driving out many commercial tenants. “These fines that we received for being open too late … are just an example of an endless list of issues that we deal with every day…”

Los Angeles, CA | Amoeba Hollywood is Moving: We are excited to announce the next home of Amoeba Hollywood will be at 6200 Hollywood Blvd! We are humbled by the massive outpouring of support throughout this search from our customers and the LA community. We aim to do you proud and continue on as your supreme source for music, movies, and so much more. We will bring that familiar Amoeba energy into this new space and you can be sure it will provide the “true Amoeba experience” as we will carry the same breadth and depth of selection. We look forward to seeing you at our new home on the corner of Hollywood & Argyle this Fall, and have provided more details for you below. Thank you for being a part of this journey with us. We’re moving to 6200 Hollywood Blvd! We’re going to take up a huge ground level space on the corner of Hollywood and Argyle in the new “El Centro” complex in downtown Hollywood. This is just 2 blocks east and 2 blocks north of our current location, and right next door to the Fonda Theatre so we’ll be easy to find!

Washington, DC | Grandmaster Flash poised to school fans on hip-hop history at U Street Music Hall: “…Back in the ’70s, we had no technology, no computers, no studios, no beat machines, no apps, no nothing,” Flash said. “So how would the music track be generated? We had to get duplicate copies of the record and pick the desired section where the drum solo was, which a lot of time was like 10 seconds, then cut and paste it and extend it for three or four minutes so the rapper would have a beat to speak on.” That meant voracious shopping in record stores to find the perfect drum break. “When I went shopping for records to find that drum break, we went shopping in the pop section of the record store, or the rock section, or the jazz section, or the blues section, or the funk section, or the R&B section, or the alternative section, or the Caribbean section, or the Latin section, just to find that drum break,” Flash said. …“When we go record shopping, it’s a crapshoot, but once you break the plastic, you buy it, like it or not,” Flash said. “So we would buy records on guessing. I’d bring the record home and play every cut trying to find that drum solo and it would all be crap, so that would go in the crap crate.”

Waco, TX | Vinyl records live on in Waco shop: Across the world, hipsters and collectors alike continue to support the decades-old industry of vinyl records. Despite being one of the oldest forms of recorded music, vinyls continue to make a way for themselves in the age of streaming. In recent years, vinyl sales have been on a continuous rise in the United States, according to Statista’s data recording LP album sales between 1993 and 2019 in the United States. During a time when you can stream any song imaginable within seconds, this continual growth is somewhat of a phenomenon. Vinyl album sales in the United States have shown consistent growth since 2006. By 2019, the industry was up by 14.5% from the previous year, having sold 18.84 million vinyl records, Statista reported. However, the United States isn’t the only country experiencing the resurgence of vinyl popularity. In 2017, the Japanese arm of Sony Music announced in a press release it would open its own vinyl record manufacturing factory in order to keep up with the demand of the Japanese vinyl market.

Record Executive Vicky Hamilton Talks Guns N’ Roses, Mötley Crüe, Her New Label, and More: The renowned music industry figure told her story in the book Appetite for Dysfunction. Vicky Hamilton came to Los Angeles from the Midwest in 1980 and cut her teeth working at a record store on the Sunset Strip and helping to promote Mötley Crüe’s early career. She then went on to propel Poison, Stryper, Guns N’ Roses, and Faster Pussycat into the spotlight, literally shedding blood (she once stapled her thumb to a picture of Vince Neil for a display she was creating in a record store) sweat, and tears to help support emerging artists that she felt had star power. Hamilton has been hailed by Forbes magazine as “one of the most successful music executives in the business.” She has worked on gut instinct that proved to be right time and again. To give it some perspective, as a Geffen executive, two projects she took interest in that the label passed on were the Goo Goo Dolls and Toad the Wet Sprocket. They undoubtedly regretted those decisions.

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In rotation: 2/5/20

Stoke Newington, UK | Thurston Moore Opens Pop-Up Record Shop: Ecstatic Peace Library will open for six weeks in Stoke Newington starting this week. Thurston Moore is teaming up with two friends to launch a new pop-up record shop in North London. Ecstatic Peace Library is the brainchild of Moore, underground comic artist Edwin Pouncey (AKA Savage Pencil) and record store and label owner Pete Flanagan of Soho Music and Zippo Records. It will function as a record store, bookshop, art gallery and underground newspaper outpost, stocking vinyl, posters, art, vintage t-shirts and music memorabilia. The shop will be based at 96 Church Street in Stoke Newington and will open every day from 11am – 6pm, starting tomorrow (February 4) and ending on March 14. Tomorrow’s grand opening will see the shop open until 9pm. In September of last year, Moore collaborated with East London record shop World Of Echo to sell more than 300 records from his private collection.

Scarborough, UK | Meet Paul Toole owner of Record Revivals – Scarborough’s longest-established record shop: His Scarborough shop may be called Record Revivals, but when chatting to Paul Toole it quickly becomes apparent that vinyl records have never really been away. There’s no doubt about it – record sales are on the up. Last year, around 4.5 million chart-eligible LPs were sold in the UK – a huge jump from 3.2 million in 2016. And it’s not just nostalgia for the glossy black disc which is driving sales – a YouGov survey showed that one in four 18 to 24-year- olds bought a vinyl record in the last month. Paul believes there are various factors that drive the love of vinyl. “In recent years a strange thing has happened. Young people who have grown up with downloads and streaming – not even CDs – have really embraced vinyl. They understand it’s something you have to look after,” he says. He also thinks that people love the fact that a record is a tangible object, adding: “There’s something about the imperfection in the sound that people really relate to on an emotional level.”

Vinyl Editions Of Spice Girls’ ‘Spiceworld’ & ‘The Greatest Hits’ Set For Release: …It’s been 23 years since Spiceworld has been available on vinyl. Now, finally re-issued on 180g black vinyl, Spiceworld retains all original artwork from 1997. It contains the No.1 smash hits ‘Spice Up Your Life’, ‘Viva Forever’ and ‘Too Much’ – their second Christmas chart topper. Spiceworld amassed more than 13 million sales worldwide cementing the Spice Girls as a cultural phenomenon. And if one wasn’t enough … released earlier this year as a picture disc to commemorate their unforgettable sold-out UK tour last summer, Spice Girls – Greatest Hits is back again! This time on 180g black vinyl with no less than nine No. 1 smash hit singles, including ‘Wannabe’, ‘2 Become 1’,‘Spice Up Your Life’, ‘Viva Forever’, ‘Goodbye’ and many more. It also includes the original artwork, this time as a single sleeve LP, with a printed inner sleeve to house the record. Both reissues come complete with digital download code.

Embrace to reissue early albums on vinyl for the first time: Indie heroes Embrace have announced their first three albums will be reissued on vinyl for the first time since their original release. The titles—The Good Will Out, Drawn From Memory and If You’ve Never Been—are available through UMC on March 6th for the UK, with the latter two being released through Craft Recordings on March 20th for North America. The vinyl format of these have been long out-of-print since their original release, making them in-demand for collectors and fans alike. This reissue also marks the first-ever digital release of Drawn From Memory and If You’ve Never Been in North America; beginning today (January 30) both titles are available to stream or download in the U.S., Canada and Mexico

TV Review: High Fidelity: …Like the original, this Hi-Fi focuses on the owner of a record store called Rob (short for Robin), played by Zoe Kravitz. The series begins with a breakup and Rob reflects on his Top 5 Hearbreaks, setting the tone for the series to do exactly what the movie and the original novel did. Using frequent breaks on the fourth wall, Rob uses music as a coping strategy while trying to determine what happens with it, which constantly leads to romantic failure and depressive consequences. Where John Cusack’s Rob had a Top 5 populated by girls of his life, Rob de Kravitz has a list that includes both sexes, as well as his most recent boyfriend, Mac (Kingsley Ben-Adir). The scenario is also changed from Chicago to New York and the entire series feels transported to 2020 despite the fact that the soundtrack still covers the entire range, from the old days to contemporary bands.

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In rotation: 2/4/20

London, UK | FOPP – If Aladdin’s Cave was a record store: Fact: This record shop in the buzzing Seven Dials area is dangerous for the wallet. I have never left here empty-handed. What’s not to love about a store selling brand new oldies for as cheap as £5? If you are also coming to the end of your current read, have a browse through their excellent range of books as most are as cheap as £3 each or two for £5, again all brand new. And if you choose to pay the extra pence for a plastic bag it comes as a see-through carrier so you can show off your latest musical finds when wandering around town. The basement has an equally impressive choice of DVDs but that’s less my cup of Rosy (Lee = tea). Show some support for record shops and swing by here. FOPP is owned by the guys behind the precarious HMV high-street name and I always say a little prayer when these owners appear in the news for their latest closures and just hope that this outpost does not fall victim.

Glasgow, UK | Herald Diary at Large: Why vinyl will never die. The year is 1993. The venue is Sony Music Studios in New York City. The band is Nirvana. Fans will later remember this MTV Unplugged performance as one of those rare TV moments that provide a jolt of dissonance, disturbance and drama to the established music scene. Like the Beatles’ first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show. Or Live Aid, when rock became the new religion; a globalised evangelical church sermon, saving us all from our sins. Although this particular evening in 1993 is low key. Stripped of hubris and hyperbole, yet quietly momentous all the same. Facing his young audience of rock disciples, Kurt Cobain hunches in a chair. A surly toad lumped on a lily pad. The cardigan he wears is the colour of dreich; knitted from wool that could easily have been sheared from a Scottish sky. His lank hair drizzles down his neck; its liquid limpness also redolent of Caledonia at its rain-raddled best. What won’t have any echoes of Scotland, however, are the songs Cobain is about to sing. They promise to be freshly-minted American classics, written by Kurt himself, a native of Washington state. Songs like Heart-Shaped Box and Smells Like Teen Spirit.

Augusta, GA | Out There…Somewhere: Big game of music, not going to Kansas City: San Francisco and Kansas City getting ready to rock, it’s almost time for the big game. “Not much of a football fan,” said Evan Grantski, of Grantski Records The game is being played in Miami at Hard Rock Stadium, and at Grantski Records they know about rocking hard. So when comes to classic vinyl, who wins…Kansas City or San Francisco? “I think musically it would have to go to San Francisco,” said Evan. It’s a hard journey to get to the Superbowl, and Journey has from that city by the bay. So does Jefferson Airplane, and Creedence Clearwater Revival left its heart in San Francisco. And Oy Como Va…it’s Santana. Somebody call a time out. Running up the score, another San Francisco band: Metallica. Sly & the Family Stone called San Francisco home, and Huey Lewis & the News, The Grateful Dead, The Bay Area Band is still huge at the record store “Oh yeah, can’t keep them in stock,” said Evan.

Lake Lanier, GA | Take a trip down memory lane at Moe’s: Moe Lyons was 16 when he purchased his first vinyl record in 1974. “It was ‘Rufusized’ by Rufus featuring Chaka Khan,” says Lyons, who owns Moe’s Record Shop on the east end of Flowery Branch’s Main Street, near the shores of Lake Lanier. “I still have the original at my house, but we have a couple of them here in the store.” As far back as the late ’70s and early ’80s, Lyons had dreams of opening a record store. By 1985, he was hired as Christmas help at a Record Bar store in his home state of Kentucky. Most recently, he retired at age 60 from Hall County Water Treatment after 18 years. He opened the store in April 2019. “I guess you could say I have a music addiction, but I really like to share music, especially on vinyl,” he said. Lyons has been collecting albums for years and now has more than 6,000 albums at home in addition to the 4,000 to 4,500 in bins at the store. Located in the former location of Lakeside Market, the store is filled with bin after bin of vinyl, sorted by genre and alphabetized by artist. Ask him about almost any artist who has recorded an album and he can walk right to the proper bin and quickly pull out an assortment.

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In rotation: 2/3/20

One Company Now Owns The Only Record Store Chains Left In US, UK and Canada: One company is single handled trying to save chain record store retailing, and so far they seem to be succeeding. This week, Sunrise Records announced that it was buying FYE, America’s last remaining nationwide record and entertainment retail chain from Trans World. That means that with the exception of a few much smaller operations, a single company now owns the only major record stores chains left in the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. FYE currently has 206 stores scattered across America and employs more than 2500. Sunrise already owns 114 HMV record stores in the UK and 85 namesake Sunrise stores in Canada bringing total record store owned 405. Sunrise chief Doug Putman said in a statement: “The addition of For Your Entertainment fits with what we are doing with HMV in the UK and Sunrise Records in Canada. There is a space for retail brands that can cater to a new audience of entertainment-hungry consumers.”

Manhattan, KS | Throwback: Local store feels the rise of vinyl sales: According to an article from Rolling Stone, vinyl sales have grown tremendously. The article claims that “CD sales were declining three times as fast as vinyl sales were growing.” Sisters of Sound, a local music store, has taken note of this trend. Sarah Cunnick, co-owner of Sisters of Sound, said they started their shop with 50 percent vinyl and 50 percent CDs. She said she noticed that vinyl sales began doubling around 2010. Although she agrees with Rolling Stone’s research, she believes the numbers may be more than they’re claiming. “The way they figure out how many sales happen, they’re only counting new vinyl,” Cunnick said. “There is hardly a way for them to track old vinyl. The reporting only takes place with the new vinyl.” Cunnick has been doing her own research throughout her store and noticed that for every one new vinyl purchased, nearly ten used vinyl records are purchased. These used vinyl records aren’t tracked when research is being done, which is why she believes the statistics are under representing.

New York, NY | With Vinyl Making A Comeback, A Treasure Trove Could Be On Your Shelf Or Packed Away Somewhere: On Sunday night, millions of people watched some of the best artists in the world honored on the Grammy Awards. Their records might even be worth a fortune someday. But music lovers might already have a treasure trove of valuable vinyl stashed on shelves or in boxes, CBS2’s Dick Brennan reported. Record stores are seeing a lot more action these days. Vinyl sales reached nearly a quarter billion dollars last year. But certain collectors have an eye out for the rarity, valuable albums re- discovered for resale, like a 1963 Bob Dylan, recorded with four unreleased tracks. “There’s only two known copies and I’m the proud owner of the first one. They insured it for $100,000. I’ve been offered as high as $80,000 for it, but I value it more than that,” said David Eckstrom, owner of the Forever Young Store. It’s an extreme example, but there’s more 12-inch treasure out there. But there’s a catch.

Canoga Park, CA | It’s A Shame, But Vinyl Manufacturer Rainbo Records Has Closed: Artists, record labels, and music trends come and go, but an unseen backbone of the music industry since 1939 has closed – vinyl manufacturer Rainbo Records. Rainbo has been the place to go for indies since there was such a thing. This was not only for artists trying to get their initial break like Husker Du, NWA, Kacey Musgraves, and Childish Gambino, but indie labels like punk stalwarts Epitaph and SST; rap imprints Death Row, Priority, and Sugar Hill; early dance labels Moonshine, Mushroom and Thump; and Concord Jazz, Rhino, and American as well. Along the way the company pressed records for the U.S. War Department for messages from home to servicemen overseas, to General Mills for records built into Wheaties boxes, to Disneyland to describe its attractions. That’s why it comes as a huge surprise that Rainbo has gone out of business. Even as vinyl has seen a healthy resurgence, that hasn’t been enough to offset the upcoming 40% rent increase that the company had to endure on its Canoga Park (a Los Angeles suburb) facility.

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In rotation: 1/31/20

AU | Executive changes at AMRA & Record Store Day: Changes are afoot at the top of the Australian Music Retailers Association (AMRA) and one of its main initiatives, Australian Record Store Day. AMRA CEO Ian Harvey and head of membership Sara Hood, are stepping down to follow other pursuits. They have run AMRA for 20 years and Record Store Day for 11. “The general plan is to keep it running as it has,” says AMRA president Blake Budak, who operates the long-running store Landspeed Records in Canberra. “Sara and Ian have put a lot of mechanisms in place and done a lot of groundwork to establish Record Store Day in Australia in such a good way. “AMRA wouldn’t be where we are today without them.” It’s little wonder that Record Store Day plays a vital role in AMRA’s operations. “We do as much trade on that one day as we do in the four days leading up to Christmas,” Budak explains. The event returns this year in April. Last year 195 stores were involved, drawing around 85,000 customers.

Dallas, TX | After 46 years, Hit Records will close, take its final spin this weekend: Say goodbye to Hit Records at a two-day closeout sale this weekend. Hit Records was anything but a one-hit wonder. The record store in the Casa View Shopping Center will close after 46 years in business. Owner Ron Ross said on Facebook that the store’s lease is up, and he doesn’t agree with the new terms. He would rather sell than try to move, according to the post. A two-day closeout sale will take place from 3-8 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the record shop at 10253 Ferguson Road. “Come see Ron and buy a piece of record store history,” the Facebook post said. Ross began working at Hit Records in 1974, and bought the store in 1986, CultureMap reported. Over the years, rock bands, such as The Ramones, AC/DC and Aerosmith, have come through its doors. Every inch of Hit Records is covered in memorabilia, from Chuky dolls to baseball cards to a pair of Chuck Taylors signed by Marky Ramone. Oh yeah, the store sells records too.

Eastbourne, UK | Eastbourne record store announces it is closing: An Eastbourne record store has announced it will be closing in March. The owner of Pebble Records in Gildredge Road said the decision was made due to ‘tough conditions’ on the high street taking its toll. Michael Kerton said, “It’s been great fun to do it. We have met lots of lovely people and made new friends. “It’s really hard on the high street at the moment. It’s inevitable change.” The online side of the business will continue trading at pebblerecords.co.uk, but the shop itself will shut by the end of March. Michael said, “There’s the social part of it you miss when shops close. That’s what we are losing.” But he said, “It’s been great, we have had a great time doing it. No regrets, it’s been fun. “It’s come to an end. Thank you for the supporters of the shop.”

Minneapolis, MN | Tes de Luna and Jason Hughes: The Curators: Tes de Luna and Jason Hughes’ introduction sounds straight out of an indie-rock rom-com. The owners of south Minneapolis record store/art boutique Rock Paper Scissors Goods initially crossed paths in Seattle, where de Luna was a regular at Hughes’ Sonic Boom Records. After hitting it off at an Elliott Smith concert in 2000, they went on their first proper date. Eventually, they would run small businesses next door to each other, get married, and have kids. De Luna, a Minneapolis native who graduated from MCAD in 1999, wanted to move the family back home. So they sold their Pacific Northwest shops and opened Rock Paper Scissors in 2018—a shop that combines their shared love of art and music under one roof. “We just wanted to use the knowledge from our former shops to start something new,” de Luna says. “Starting small in a new city made sense, and we hoped that creative folks would appreciate both art and music.”

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  • SUPPORTING YOUR LOCAL INDIE SHOPS SINCE 2007


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