It’s happening. This Saturday, April 22, is Record Store Day. If you aren’t familiar with Record Store Day, it’s an opportunity for the music world to give love to the saints who still shop, work, and thrive at independent record stores. The event got started in 2007 as a way to call attention to the essential role that record stores play in the music scene in general, and music discovery in particular. Since then, it’s grown into a behemoth of an event with record stores all around the world participating. I called around to a few shops in the Twin Cities to get the skinny on what might be in store from the jazz world, and I hope to see you out at a couple shops on Saturday!
Before You Go:
Be prepared for long lines, and be prepared for awesome hangs. There are going to be lines on Record Store Day. That’s just a fact. But, there’s also going to be amazing people, fellow music enthusiasts, extra treats, and great energy. Every time I’ve gone shopping on Record Store Day, I’ve just been overwhelmed by the spirit of the event.
In the immortal words of Mick Jagger, “You can’t always get what you want.” Physical media is a beautiful thing, but it’s a finite thing. Records will sell out, records won’t arrive, things happen. Be ready to pivot, find something else that works for you, and keep it moving. Even if you can’t grab your first choice on Record Store Day, I guarantee you that your record collection will be in much better shape when all is said and done on Saturday night.
Minnesota Record Stores and What They’re Hoping to Have In Store:
Cheapo Records – locations in Saint Paul, Minneapolis, and Blaine
When I reached the music buyer over at the uptown shop on Nicollet, he was getting excited for the new Bill Evans and Larry Coryell releases. He hoped that all the Cheapo’s would have those on hand for Record Store Day, but, as mentioned, it’s never a certainty.
Note, they only pressed up 1500 of that Larry Coryell piece, so I imagine those will move fast!
Barely Brothers – Saint Paul
I knew I was in good shape when Adam Linz picked up the phone. While he puts in some hours over at the shop, he is best known as one of the most celebrated bassists in Minnesota, and a legendary part of the group Fat Kid Wednesdays. He cautioned me that they never know exactly what they’ll have on hand, but there were a couple of releases he was optimistic about. The Albert Ayler Box Set, The new Miles Davis Turnaround, and some live Art Blakey from 1970. Good stuff. Thanks for picking up the phone, Adam.
Down in the Valley – Locations in Golden Valley and Maple Grove
Scott from Down in the Valley gave me the update about what they’re hoping to be offering on Saturday. Roy Ayers, Walter Bishop Jr., and many more. Scott called special attention to the music and story of Harry Whitaker and his album, Black Renaissance: Body Mind and Spirit. You can read more about that particular release in this article from the Village Voice.
Mill City Sound – Hopkins
The team over at Mill City Sound was already working away prepping for Record Store Day, but a clerk was nice enough to dig into some of the jazz releases that they’re hoping to have on hand. They brought up the aforementioned Bill Evans and Miles Davis releases, but also said they were hoping to have some of the newly released Eric Dolphy in store.
Agharta – Saint Paul
When I asked Dylan over at Agharta if they would have any jazz on hand for Record Store Day, he told me that this was “the best Record Store Day yet for jazz,” and said he was so excited for the releases. If all goes as plans, Dylan and co. hope to have the Ayler, the Miles Davis, the Bill Evans, plus some sounds from Chet Baker and Max Roach with Archie Shepp. Thanks, Dylan.
Urban Lights – Saint Paul
Tim Wilson, proprietor extraordinaire of Urban Lights, had plenty of jazz to talk about, including the new Samara Joy on vinyl and some new Raye on vinyl, as well.
My biggest takeaway: enjoy Record Store Day. Enjoy the company of being around fellow music lovers, and throw some business to the incredible record stores that make our scene buzz every single day! And even if you are busy this Saturday, make your way to one of these record stores in the coming weeks and give them some business! – Sean McPherson
Special Note for Record Stores: If you want to share some jazz-centric information about your Record Store Day offerings send an email to email@example.com
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