Now Hear This

How to Celebrate Record Store Day

I love a holiday.  I mean in all actuality…who doesn’t?  A whole day set aside for everyone to come together and honor or celebrate something, whether it be huge and important (your birthday) or small and silly (National Donut Day, anyone?) – holidays rule.  So it should be no surprise that one of my favorite special holidays is none other than Record Store Day, taking place all over the U.S.A. this Saturday, April 21st.  This unique day celebrates the importance of music and honors all the independent record stores across the country that have held out against the corporatizing and digitizing of the record selling industry.

Don’t get me wrong, I love the convenience and ease of downloading music from the comforts of my domicile.  I basically spend a couple hours every day using the wonders of the internet to increase my digital music collection.  That being said…there is still nothing like being able to physically hold a CD or vinyl record and having that tangible connection to a band you love.  You really can’t read the liner notes or truly experience the album artwork from a “digital booklet.”  I am one of those nerds that collects vinyl and thinks the act of listening to a whole album streaming out from what is essentially a sewing needle is the closet I will ever get to experiencing true magic.

Whether you have a record player or still listen to CDs in your car or are exclusively an iTunes shopper – everyone should get out to their local brick and mortar record stores and check out the one-day only awesomeness of Record Store Day 2012.  Hundreds of artists create special releases that are only sold during this holiday and they are usually some of the coolest rarities you can get your hands on.  Bands like Arcade Fire, 311, Foster the People, The Clash, M83, The Black Keys, David Bowie, Katy Perry and the Arctic Monkeys (plus a few hundred more of your favorites) have all crafted special singles or 7″ vinyl releases just for this occasion.  There’s always special merch on sale and even a bevy of stars doing day-of in-store performances at some of these local music meccas.

Check out the official Record Store Day website for a complete list of all the special things the stores will be selling as well as an interactive list to find your closest local independent record store.  I’m lucky enough to live in LA, where I get to spend my RSD at the King of all Indie Record Stores, Ameoba Records… but wherever you may lay your head at night, I guarantee there is a local shop fighting the good fight for your neighborhood music fans.  So, take some time this Saturday and show your support for Record Store Day by bringing your business to one of these fine establishments.

You might just be surprised how much better that song you wanted to download sounds after you’ve actually held it in your hands first.