On April 22nd, Record Store Day will be celebrating it’s 10th anniversary. What began as a gathering and way to celebrate the unique culture surrounding independent record stores has now become an international event observed on every continent besides Antartica. Every year, musicians coming from different genres and marks in their career have the opportunity to either rerelease or debut music on vinyl. So far, we know that Record Store Day 2017 will be celebrated by over hundreds of artists, including Elton John, The Smiths, Animal Collective, Fleetwood Mac, and more.
This year, alt-rocker St. Vincent will serve as the official Record Store Day ambassador. The position was created in 2009 by Jesse Hughes from the Eagles of Death Metal. Since, the position was held by Ozzy Osbourne, Dave Grohl, and Jack White. St. Vincent will be releasing the highly anticipated follow-up to 2015’s self-titled record sometime this Spring. We’re hoping to at least hear a new single from the forthcoming record by the time Record Store Day rolls around, but either way, we’re happy to have St. Vincent as this year’s ambassador.
Though Record Store Day was created for and by independent record sellers and vinyl fanatics, it’s an event that can and should be enjoyed by every music fan. It’s the perfect time to splurge on music that is both new and nostalgic. What other time would Elton John reissue his pick for favorite live recording, 17-11-70, for the first time on vinyl? Or a limited edition, 7″ recording of The Beatles’ “Strawberry Fields Forever” and “Penny Lane”? Here is everything we know about Record Store Day 2017, from locations, to special releases, participating artists, and more.
If you’re not sure which independent record stores are participating in this year’s Record Store Day, you can check out the official store locator. In New York City alone, there are over thirty independent record stores who will be offering official Record Store Day releases. (A few suggestions: I personally enjoy the spacious, industrial vibes at Rough Trade in Williamsburg, or the classic vibe at Fifth Avenue Records in Park Slope, or the timelessness of Village Music World.)
You’ll probably want to get an early start on April 22nd, as you may have to hit up more than one store to grab the specific records you’re looking for. Be sure to check your store’s hours beforehand, as they may be extended to accommodate the Record Store Day crowd.
2017 Record Store Day Artists
You can check out the full list of musicians participating in Record Store Day here. Some of the highlights include seven hits from Prince’s incredible catalog. Santana’s Live at the Woodstock Music and Art Fair. New music from Animal Collective. Patti Smith’s Hey Joe. The list goes on. In preparing for Record Store Day, we suggest contacting your local independent record store(s), as each one will be ordering a unique inventory that may not match what you’re looking for. It’s a good idea to become friendly with your local record store anyways, as they are the best source for finding those rarer, more coveted vinyls.
Record Store Day his issued a full list of contributing artists, the title of the record and format of the record, and how many copies are going to be released on April 22nd. The list is divided in three parts. Exclusive Record Store Day Releases are only available on the day at a RDS specified store and will not be available anywhere else in the same format. Limited Run/ Regional Focus Releases will also be exclusive on Record Store Day at a store participating in Record Store Day, the difference being the quantity available. These records are extremely limited to 1000 copies and below, which made them deserving of this sub-list. ‘Record Store Day First’ Releases will be available on the day at participating stores only for the first six weeks before becoming widely accessible.
Not only Over the years, Record Store Day organizers have seen a dramatic increase in the number of artists who get involved in making this day amazing for the avid music listener. Not only has musician Jack White used Record Store Day to reissue his own music, but he’s become a key part in the independent record industry. His label, Third Man Records, is one of the only establishments of its kind. Both Third Man Record storefronts have a live music venue with direct-to acetate recording ability. Meaning, bands can enter the venue, perform, and leave with a fresh press of the show. Key players like Jack White give Record Store Day organizers hope that vinyl will remain relevant in the future.
Special Record Store Day Releases
Every facet of the music industry has a different way of celebrating Record Store Day, including the makers of those machines we use to play our favorite vinyls. Crosley, a well known company for making record players, is issuing a special release for the 40th Anniversary of Stars Wars. Yes, you heard correctly. The company’s well known Cruiser Deluxe turntable will now fashion a Star Wars design on the cover and the franchise’s official logo once you flip it open. The image is from Star Wars: A New Hope and its iconic movie poster. Even though this specific turntable doesn’t have the best Amazon reviews, it could be worth it for you Star Wars loving audiophiles. But don’t forget, along with other special record store day releases, you won’t be able to find this Crosley turntable at Urban Outfitters, you’ll have to pack into independent sellers like the rest of us.
Another special release coming in honor of Record Store Day is Slick Rick’s classic single “Children’s Story”, which will be reissued and turned into an actual children’s book. The song will be transformed into an 18-page storybook with Slick Rick’s lyrics reimagined with hand drawn tales. The book and reissued song will be released via Get Down Records, who put forth the following statement: “From the little boy who was misled to the tense police chase, to the unsure children hearing the story from their ‘Uncle Ricky,’ this is the most unique way the story has ever been presented.”
And perhaps one of the most exciting pieces of news regarding this upcoming Record Store Day is Dave Grohl re-recording the entirety of Nirvana’s famed album Nevermind, their famed breakthrough album that will be turning 25 years old this year. All songs and instruments are to be reimagined by Dave Grohl and produced by Butch Vig, one of Nirvana’s original producers. In a statement, Dave Grohl said, “17 years ago, Kurt, Kris and I entered a studio with our songs, our shitty instruments, and a burning desire to make a great-sounding album. We couldn’t have dreamed it would have the impact it did, but now as Foo Fighters continue to travel the planet rocking for people, some of the younger fans aren’t aware of the band I used to be in. Hopefully recording Nevermind again will help to introduce Kurt’s great songwriting and immense talent to some of the Foo Fighters fans who weren’t born.”
Check back for more news about this upcoming Record Store Day, and in the mean time, get acquainted with your local independent record store!