Conceptualized by a group of like-minded friends in 2007, the very first Record Store Day didn't take place until last year, when Metallica (they are, if nothing, big fans of all music purchased in stores, not online, afterall) kicked off the inaugural day at Rasputin Music in San Franscisco. Now, each year, we can mark our calendars on the third Saturday of April with a sharpie and proclaim "Huzzah for the shopkeep!"
Record Store Day is a one-day celebration for the independent record store — which is, according to founders, "a physical retailer whose product line consists of at least 50% music retail, whose company is not publicly traded and whose ownership is at least 70% located in the state of operation." So no Borders, no Sam Goody's, no Virgin Records (well, nobody's going there anymore anyway). It's a day of going to your neighborhood store and bonding with that liberal arts major behind the counter. What will you get out of it? Well, besides some local economy stimulus, you'll also be handsomely rewarded with live in-store performances by local bands, give-aways, grab-bags and special releases available only if you put foot to pavement and visit a participating store on Saturday. Each store decides its own activities, and every store is different. So if you're in Chicago, and you hit up multiple stores on Saturday (like many of the Transmission staff plans to do) you'll likely walk away with a veritable cornucopia of delights.
Check here for a list of participating Illinois Record stores.
What we've heard back from some stores in the area regarding their planned celebrations include the following:
Beverly Records, 11612 S. Western Ave, Chicago. They've planned a pizza and pop party from noon to 3pm and anticipate having some new vinyl 7" releases which are being released for RSD.
Dave's Records, 2604 N. Clark, Chicago. Besides having many exclusive vinyl only releases (which will be listed on the store's myspace blog on Saturday morning by 8am so that people will know what's in stock when they open), they will have a "Give The DJ Some Love Sale" (25% off all 12" singles, both new and used). They will feature 15 New and Reissue pieces chosen by Dave himself that will be 20% off for Record Store Day. Free Record Store Day T-shirt for purchases of $50, 1 RSD Shirt and 1 Dave's Records T-shirt Free for purchase of $100. (T-shirts will also be on sale for $12 or 2 for $20.) Also for purchases over $50 we will have a Record Store Day LP put out by Sony records.
Dusty Groove America, 1120 N. Ashland Ave, Chicago. They'll feature a Numero Group DJ set from noon to 2pm, a free CD to the first 25 customers, free prizes for every purchase, refreshments and special surprises along with lots of special merchandise available in limited supply.
Hard Boiled Records, 2010 W. Roscoe, Chicago. Hard Boiled will have an in-store performance by Radio Ballad at 4pm and there will be giveaways and food all day.
Jazz Record Mart, 27 E. Illinois, Chicago. Will host special performances by Jason Adasewicz's Rolldown 11am with Keefe Jackson, Josh Berman, Jason Roebke, and blues performer Dave Specter at 1pm. They're also selling two special vinyl reissues of Magic Sam West Side Soul and Roscoe Mitchell's Sound. Plus, they'll have 20-50% sale specials on select vinyl in the store.
Laurie's Planet of Sound, 4639 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago. Laurie's will have in-store performances including Azita playing live at 12 noon, and DJs all day long including Dave Roberts and Kristine of Planet Earth, LeRoy Bach, Jim Cooper of Detholz/Baby Teeth and employees past and present. They will also give away Planet of Sound record tote bags with a vinyl purchase of $25 (while supplies last) and lots of free schwag from various labels.
Permanent Records, 1914 W. Chicago, Chicago. Permanent will feature: an all day sale with 10% off of every purchase, a drawing to win a prize including a package from Southern Lord Records, 2 live in-store performances: Helen Money 3pm (experimental cellist) and Marisa Nadler 4pm (dreamy, folk pop). They're also sponsoring a "Zaireeka party" at 7pm for which they're asking folks to bring a boom box. From Sam, "We do this every year in honor of our store kitty Zaireeka who's named after the ultra cool, 4 channel, concept album the Flaming Lips released back in 1997. For those who never experienced this now's the time! We'll set up multiples of 4 boom boxes and do our best to sync up our playing time. We also have the Zaireeka video footage compiled by the band for the 10 year anniversary reissue of the album that we'll be projecting. It's a really amazing experience."
Reckless Records, multiple Chicago locations. In-store performances by the likes of Lair of the Minotaur (3161 N. Broadway, 4pm), TBA "a well known & much liked Chicago punk rock band" 3pm, and Disappears 5pm (1532 N. Milwaukee) Dylan Posa & Three Cheers For One Dead Man at 1pm, Coins at 2pm, Mark Solotroff/Bruce Lamont/Right-Eyed Rita at 3pm, (26 E. Madison). Reckless has a long list of its Record Store Day special limited edition releases on its website. In addition, Steve Krakow, AKA Plastic Crimewave, will be doing "rock 'n' roll caricatures" for $5 apiece at the Wicker Park location
Record Breakers, 2109 S. State Street, Chicago. They'll have in-store performances from noon till 7pm by the likes of The Projection, Friday Night Boys, Organic Groov, Anison, Gabriel Lyon & the Notary, the Banner Year, 2 Fresh, and Dessa. They'll also have a storewide 20% off sale (cds/lps/dvds/tshirts/posters/stickers/etc.) and free food/drinks and giveaways.
Even labels have gotten into the spirit! Chicago label Thrill Jockey plans a seriously cool limited edition (900 copies) "Records Toreism" LP which will feature a drawing by Post typography on one side and a photo silkscreen by Crosshair on the other. It will be available at Permanent, Reckless, Dave's, Dusty Groove, Jazz Record Mart, Laurie's and Hard Boiled Records. Full details at the TJ website.
And bands are definitely sharing the love, the Dandy Warhols released a special megaremix [mp3] available in select participating stores on Record Store Day, or for a very limited time online.
Keep an eye out here at Transmission on Sunday, the 19th, for some highlights from our staff's adventures around Chicago on Record Store Day. And if you score something really sweet, write us, or take a picture and submit it to our Transmission Flickr pool for all to see (please add the tag: "Record Store Day 2009").