It’s easy to get pulled into the excitement and hype surrounding Record Store Day, that annual ode to the culture of independent record shops.
Not that you’re going to show up at your favorite record shop at 3 a.m. (seven hours before it opens) just to get first crack at one of the hundreds of exclusive albums being released for the day. Not that you will drive from San Francisco or Los Angeles to an out-of-the-way place like Fresno or Visalia, thereby increasing your odds at one of those limited-run records.
Tower District Records is hosting an album cover re-creation contest. You’ll have 15 minutes to re-create your favorite album cover for a chance to win $200.
But others do, and will, for this year’s Record Store Day, Saturday, April 16. Local record shops are gearing up with day-long celebrations, in-store giveaways, live performances and, of course, plenty of vinyl.
As a primer, here are 10 Record Store Day releases to get excited about, chosen with help from those in the know at Tower District Records, Dynamite Vinyl, Rasputin Music and Velouria Records in Visalia.
▪ Creedence Clearwater Revival, 1969 Box Set
CCR had a bumper year in 1969. The band released three Top 10 albums, four hit singles and had three B-side singles on the charts. Here, collectors get three LPs, three CDs (of each of the above LPs), and three 7-inch vinyl discs, plus posters, a concert ticket and more – all reflecting that one year.
▪ NOFX, “Sid & Nancy,” 7-inch
Maybe the most sought-after title on this list. It features two demos that will likely be on the band’s new album later this year.
▪ Notorious B.I.G., “Mo Money, Mo Problems,” 12-inch colored vinyl
Hip-hop came of age in a mostly post-vinyl world. The fact we’re seeing hip-hop at Record Store Day proves the continued popularity of the genre – and records. This one is aptly pressed on “money green” vinyl.
▪ The Doors, “Live at the Aquarius,” triple LP
This is a recording of the Door’s first live performance; night one of a two-night stand at the Aquarius Theatre on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood. There’s a track called “Tuning” to give you an idea of what to expect.
▪ Bee Gees/Faith No More, “I Started a Joke,” 7-inch color vinyl.
Part of Rhino’s “Side-By-Side” series,” which has two artists playing one song. In this case, the song is 1968’s “I Started a Joke,” originally done by the Bee Gees (side A) and covered by freak-out metal band Faith No More (side B).
▪ Bill Evans, “Some Other Time: The Lost Session From the Black Forest,” double LP
A newly discovered Bill Evans studio album that was recorded five days after his legendary performance at the 1968 Montreux Jazz Festival with bassist Eddie Gomez and drummer Jack DeJohnette. It’s the only studio album from this trio.
▪ J Dilla, “The Diary,” LP
A lost vocal album from the legendary rapper producer, released on the 10th anniversary of his death, in conjunction with Nas’ Mass Appeal Records.
▪ Sex Pistols, “Never Mind the Bollocks Here’s the Sex Pistols,” 12-inch picture disc.
A new pressing of the 1977 punk classic. This version features reverse colors of the U.S. release of the album. For the most hardcore collectors and Sex Pistols fans.
Clearly the greatest rock ’n’ roll band of all time. Besides I am collecting all pressings of this record. Ugh. The disease.
Dynamite Vinyl owner Paul Cruikshank, on the release of another Sex Pistols picture disc.
▪ Deftones, “B Sides and Rarities,” double LP.
The Sacramento metal band is playing in Fresno in August, so Deftones are top of mind with local fans. Plus, the band tends to sell well locally. The band’s just-released album “Gore” was gone within a half-hour of being put in stock at Velouria Records.
▪ RSD mystery record.
For the adventurous collector/fan. These 7-inchers come totally unlabeled, so you won’t know what you’ve got until you play it.
Where to go for Record Store Day
- Tower District Records, 302 E. Olive Ave. 9 a.m. New releases and RSD exclusives, plus food trucks, an album cover re-creation contest and five bands. 559-478-4034
- Dynamite Vinyl, 1476 N. Van Ness Ave., 8 a.m. Hundreds of RSD exclusives, plus eight bands. 559-266-7865
- Rasputin Music, 5611 N. Blackstone Ave., 11 a.m. Large selection store days of RSD exclusives. 559-435-7245
- Spinners Records, 639 E. Olive Ave. 8:30 a.m. New inventory for the day, including some from the owner’s personal collection, hidden among the bins and ready to be found. 559-441-1525
- Velouria Records, 109 E. Main St., Visalia. 10 a.m. New inventory, plus RSD exclusives, T-shirts and posters and official early-bird specials. 559-625-8000