When high-profile record stores began going out of business in the mid-2000s, the press deemed records a dying medium.
But now, the resurgence of vinyl has contributed to the popularity of record stores and music culture’s vibrancy today. Since 2007, Record Store Day has emerged to acknowledge the success of hundreds of independently-owned stores around the country.
Saturday is this year’s iteration of the celebration, and events big and small will be happening at record stores around the world and right here in the Twin Cities.
At The Electric Fetus in Minneapolis, store manager Bob Fuchs expects the crowd to surpass the approximately 3,000 people that showed up for last year’s event.
The Electric Fetus is hoping to draw in customers with exclusive releases and live music from BNLX, Greg Grease, Ghostband, Rupert Angeleyes, They Might Be Giants, Erik Koskinen and Frankie Lee — not to mention grub and libations from Glam Doll Donuts and Peace Coffee.
In addition, Dangerous Man Brewing is developing a special brew for the occasion.
“They wanted to create a spring brew that reminds customers of the powerful smells of fragrance and incense you get when walking into the store,” Fuchs said.
Each store participating in Record Store Day will sell titles from an extensive list of albums ranging from major to indie labels. Customers will wait in line in the wee hours of the morning to snag these titles, along with special local releases.
Fuchs is psyched about the event but also about the future for music in and out of the Twin Cities.
“I think the music community is as good as it’s ever been, and it’s only getting more diverse. It is a fantastic place to grow in not only music but art, film and food,” Fuchs said. “It’s been incredible; in the 25-plus years I have been here, it’s the strongest it has ever been.”
Carrie Colliton, manager of the Record Store Day organization, said the longevity of a store depends on the passionate, knowledgeable people that keep music culture alive. Another component to keeping record stores alive is the consumers who appreciate shopping local.
“I think a good store is one where lots of people can feel comfortable. I don’t think it has to do with the type of music you sell or how large your store is. It all has to do with the people,” Colliton said.
Colliton said society is shifting toward digital music consumption, but it will never eradicate the mediums that music lovers know and love.
“People are gravitating toward physical things like books and records, things they can interact with. Humans don’t want to spend all of their time in front of the screen, and that’s not going to change anytime soon,” Colliton said. “Human interaction will never go away.”
What: Record Store Day
When: Saturday, April 18
Where: The Electric Fetus, 2000 4th Ave. S., Minneapolis, various other stores around the Twin Cities