National Record Store Day is Upon Us

The Core Belief

Not too long ago, records stores both corporate and independent were like neighborhood bars: they could be found all over the place. I could run down to 6 blocks to the Virgin Megastore on Union Square or 16 blocks to Tower Records on West 4th and Broadway if Virgin didn’t have the LP or CD I was looking for.

However, I frequented the indie record stores most of the time. Academy Records on 18th Street, Other Music on West 4th Street were serious stores that seemed to step off the pages of High Fidelity and on to the streets of New York. They replaced St. Marks Music and Bleecker Bob’s as my usual haunts to find those rare, unreleased and just plain wacky albums I didn’t really need but was always looking to buy. I not only listened incessantly to these hard to find slabs of horrible yet joyous noise and blare but found new ways to clutter my apartment with stacks and stacks of new/old music.

Tower closed in 2005 and Virgin last year, victims of the rise of MP3’s, Napster, iTunes and the internet. The Independent Record Store operator, long threatened with extinction by the rise megastore, has managed to survive. They now face extinction from the same forces that put the corporate giants out of business.

However, this time there is something those who geek about looking for old Pere Ubu LP’s new released on CD or the original vinyl single of the Cyrkle’s Red Rubber Ball: National Record Store Day. This year, NRSD is tomorrow 4/17/10.

I’ll be shopping at both of Phoenix’s Indie record stores: Stinkweed’s (Central and Camelback) and Revolver Records (2nd and Roosevelt.) Make sure to go to your favorite independent record store and throw them some love and some business. Not only will you be helping keep some well needed small business operators from the dustbin of history, but you will be helping twisted nerds like myself who need to go into a store and need to feel the CD, look at the artwork and wonder if I can bargain the price down a bit.

Oh the things I learned from Harvey Pekar.

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