Record Store Day

Before the existence of the Internet, or digital music, your local record store was the one place to find a copy of your favorite album. Waiting for the new big album to come out and then going to the store to actually buy a physical copy was a big deal, and always very exciting. You couldn’t turn on your computer and download or stream the music you liked. You’d have to make sure you had enough money, walk, or drive up to the store (or ride a bike) and purchase the piece of music you wanted. For many, record store day was a far more fun and fulfilling way to purchase music, although not convenient or instantaneous.

The ease of downloading music to your MP3 player with the click of a button, unfortunately results in more, and more, record stores closing up shop every year. You can always buy CD’s at places such as WalMart or Target. Most of the time, the stores only carry popular albums compared to actual record stores. Your choices are pretty limited. Of course, you can’t deny that digital music is a pretty cool thing and makes finding specific albums a lot easier. However, digital music has destroyed the profits of record stores around the world. Depending on where you live, locating a record store is gradually becoming harder and harder.

In 2008, a holiday for people who truly appreciate music enough to go out and buy the physical copy was started. The third Saturday of April every year is known as “Record Store Day.” Every year, thousands of music fans flock to record stores in April to purchase their favorite music on CD, Cassette tape, or Vinyl. Music fans hope the money they spend can help keep their local record stores open. The third Saturday of April has become a day loved by customers, and store owners.

The first record store day was kicked off by Metallica, who were that year’s “unofficial ambassadors.” Every year a different musical act plays the role of ambassador for record store day. Another really, cool aspect of record store day is every year there are quite a few “special releases” specifically for record store day. Even if you’re an extensive collector of music and there’s nothing else for you to buy, come record store day there will be a lot of material you don’t own on the shelves. Not only are there special releases, there’s special appearances where musicians and bands of all types show up at different stores around the country to sign autographs, give out free merchandise, and maybe perform live.

Now, April has arrived and record store day is right around the corner. This year record store day falls on the 20th. Instead of spending your money on digital music, why not take a trip to the nearest record store? Support not only the musicians you love but the store owners who struggle every day to provide you with the music.