April 25, 2012

In Review.

I know, I know. You're tired of hearing about it. But lemme just say one thing...RECORD STORE DAY 2012 WAS AMAZING! Started the day off by jamming some vinyl while catching up on things around the house, and then after lunch, we headed to Cactus Records! 

It was overwhelming, to say the least. 

I'd never been to this particular store (a record store in my city I haven't been to? What?) but I completely fell in like. Not in love like I was with Sundance (it really lacked that 'authentic/vintagey' feel, don't know how else to describe it) BUT it was still comfy, nonetheless. Their selection of new vinyl was huge but fairly disappointing (either the stuff I listen to sold out before I got there or they just cater to a different crowd)...and I felt the same way about their used LPs :( Which made me really frustrated and sad (especially since prices were surprisingly decent for the most part, save, you know, anything by the Beatles...or any other iconic band whose albums I’d kill to own, but that's to be expected); so much so that at one point I was just about ready to call it quits (which indicates the severity of the situation…I don’t just leave record stores. I will spend no less than 3.5 hrs foraging through bin after bin after bin. Obsessed). I’m looking around at all these people with stacks of records in their hands, thinking, "WHAT AM I MISSING HERE?!" 

There was a bright spot in my momentary RSD crisis, though. A guy flipping through the bin next to me recognized my Showbread tattoo (on my left foot) and that was pretty cool. He is now officially one of two people who have ever recognized said tattoo on sight, versus asking if I hate music/am anti-eighth notes. It was nice to find a fellow fan of what could very well be one of my favorite bands of all time. So thank you, guy in the navy deep-v with Zeppelin album in hand. Thank you.

It was around that time that The Boyfriend came to snap me out of my defeated, mindless wandering. He grabbed my wrist and we raced across the store, each aisle congested with music lovers of all ages. And then, at the far end of the store, in a dark corner in a quiet aisle, were boxes and boxes of $1 vinyl lined up on the floor along the wall.

There it was, my golden Record Store Day mecca.

My excitement was renewed with every box I went through (there were at least twelve, realtalk)…cardboard boxes of Half Price Books-stock vinyl (my local one stocks a pretty good selection, but the prices are a bit steep), MY kind of vinyl, for cheap! My foraging produced the likes of Paul McCartney, Billy Joel, Rod Steward, Dean Martin, Loggins & Messina, Smothers Brothers, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Styx; the list went on. There were even duplicates of albums I’d seen with the vintage LPs that didn’t make the cut because of a little sleeve wear and tear. Or they didn’t want to stock five copies of the same Jackson Browne album for $7, whatever. At one point an older gentleman happened down the aisle and, seeing the massive stack of LPs by my bag on the floor, asked us (with some amazement) if we had players to listen to all of this. He couldn’t believe that “kids our age” were this enthusiastic about an older music medium.

Um, kneeled over a box of records is where I want to live, sometimes.

Now I’m just being dramatic (but seriously). I DID end up shelling out some extra cash for one of the special limited-edition RSD-only releases: London Calling on 45 by the Clash…not my favorite song by them (all the Laura Marling, Ellie Goulding, and Mae albums were sold out) BUT I love the Clash like a no one else and have yet to own ANY of their stuff on vinyl, so I figured it was a great way to kick off my future collection (all of which I’ll have to buy online, apparently [sad day]).

Ok. I can ramble for ages about this stuff, but here’s how my RSD haul ultimately panned out (dollar bin guyz):
Streetlife Serenade- Billy Joel
Songs in the Attic- Billy Joel (I'm trying to complete my collection. Love him)
The Grand Illusion- Styx (this is my FAVORITE album by them, and I couldn’t remember if I already owned it or not)
For Everyman- Jackson Browne
Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour (HAD to)
Love on the Wing- Jesse Colin Young (no idea who this is but I want to frame the album art for my room, and who knows? The album could be awesome)
UK Limited Edition London Calling 7”- the Clash

The Boyfriend scored a brand new copy of Plastic Beach on vinyl…SO LEGIT. We listened to it later and the quality was phenomenal. Pretty sure it’s better than any other form of the album I’ve heard.
We ended the day watching Empire Records, what else?! Overall, RSD 2012 was a great success. I’ve made a list of small record stores in the far reaches of Houston that I haven’t yet visited (I haven’t lived here in two years, people) and hope to check them out over the course of 2012. When you walk into a shop like that, you never know what you’re going to find. And that’s the beauty of the hunt, I think.

How was your weekend? Did you celebrate Record Store Day? Any of you lovely people score some RSD limited-release stuff? 

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You're so sweet (: Thanks friend!


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