Editor’s Note: This story was originally published on defunct, Central Indiana arts website Sky Blue Window on September 26, 2014. Some content, style and formatting may differ from the original version.
By now, even casual music fans have likely heard of Record Store Day, the annual celebration of brick-and-mortar sonic purveyors and all things vinyl, which takes place on the third Saturday of April each spring. Listeners may be less familiar with the holiday’s younger sibling, Cassette Store Day, which returns for its second installment this Saturday.
On the surface, Cassette Store Day may appear gimmicky or misguided to those old enough to recall the frustrating process of reeling in a tangled ribbon of cassette tape with your pinky finger. However, the format has seen a minor resurgence in recent years as independent musicians seek to provide listeners with a tangible release at a fraction of the cost of vinyl or CDs. With cassette duplicators available at an affordable price point, musicians can produce a limited-run tape without bothering with the added cost of a third-party manufacturer.
Several local record stores will host festivities related to Cassette Store Day this weekend. LUNA Music has planned a sidewalk sale, a guest DJ set from Musical Family Tree’s Jon Rogers, and a pop-up shop from Little Super. Around the corner, Vibes Music will host live performances from local artists such as Chives, Hair Peace and Golden Moses, along with a DJ set from Jorma Whittaker. Both events are for all-ages.
For those unable to partake in Saturday’s festivities, Indy CD & Vinyl will host its monthly KIDS DAY this Sunday, featuring an all-ages performance from Mr. Daniel, better known as longtime local musician Daniel Paquette. All in all, this weekend offers a laundry list of reasons to hit your friendly, local record store.
Prep for your weekend sonic adventures with this video of Jon Rogers’ alternate persona Golden Moses from his recent album release party for Face Boot, which was held at Joyful Noise Recordings. The video was shot by BrainTwins.
Written by Rob Peoni
As is readily apparent, we are vinyl enthusiasts around these parts. As such, we’re excited about the annual Record Store Day 2.0, held as part of the retail behemoth Black Friday. Fighting off bloodthirsty mothers in search of 2012’s hot holiday toy may serve as an excellent exercise in shedding Turkey-day calories, but it proves dangerous and ill-advised. Instead, we recommend a stroll to the nearest record store for a friendlier Black Friday shopping experience. The holiday is marked by a slew of special, limited-edition releases that are sure to brighten any bookcase. Below, we’ve highlighted five can’t miss Black Friday exclusives.
Nirvana – Incesticide: 20th Anniversary Edition
Nirvana’s 1992 compilation release of demos, cover songs and radio performances has received a full remastering in honor of the album’s 20th anniversary. Incesticide is available on 180 gram vinyl at 45 RPM for the first time ever. The release features the Kurt Cobain’s artwork with lyric sheet art housed in a deluxe gatefold sleeve. Gold foiled, stamped and individually numbered. Watch a video for the album’s lone single, “Sliver” below.
Miles Davis – Miles Ahead
Miles Davis’s 1957 release Miles Ahead came on the back of his groundbreaking Birth of the Cool sessions, and represented the artist’s first foray into orchestral jazz in collaboration with legendary jazz pianist, arranger and composer Gil Evans. The duo would go on to record a string of veritable masterpieces for Columbia in the form of Porgy and Bess, Sketches of Spain and Quiet Nights. Listen to where the relationship drew its first breaths on 180 gram vinyl recorded in MONO. Both Porgy & Bess and Sketches of Spain are also receiving Black Friday reissue treatment.
The Velvet Underground & Nico – Scepter Studios Acetate
These rare 1966 recordings feature early, alternate versions of what would later comprise the legendary debut album The Velvet Underground & Nico. The sessions were recorded at Scepter Studios, housed within the warehouse space that would later play home to Studio 54. The album is available on limited edition, 180 gram vinyl, gold foil stamped and individually numbered.
Joe Strummer & The Mescalaros – Live at Action Town Hall
These recordings come from a 2002 live performance by the legendary Clash frontman and his backing band The Mescalaros. The concert – held as a benefit for striking firefighters – is notorious among Clash aficionados, as it featured Strummer on stage with former bandmate Mick Jones for the first time in nearly 20 years. By this time, Strummer’s musical tastes had ventured far from the Englishman’s punk rock roots, influenced heavily by the Afrobeat rhythms, jam bands and electronic music that had risen to prominence around the turn of the century.
Big Brother & The Holding Company – Cheap Thrills
Cheap Thrills was the sophomore LP from Bay Area psych-blues outfit Big Brother & The Holding Company and the band’s last with Janis Joplin as lead singer. In 1968, the album rose to number one on the Billboard pop charts, where it sat for eight weeks. The track listing features several of the songs that would define Joplin’s career, including “Ball and Chain”and “Piece of My Heart.” The album’s cover art was illustrated by legendary underground cartoonist Robert Crumb. Listen on 180 gram vinyl, recorded in MONO.
Written by Rob Peoni
On Record Store Day 2012, Ra Ra Riot released a 7” collaboration with Delicate Steve. Side A featured the two covering Steve Winwood’s classic “Valerie”, which you can stream below. I have to say, as much as I am a fan of the violin infused Ra Ra sound, the group has some seriously fabulous 80’s vibe flowing out of this track…so great that I wouldn’t be opposed to the group dabbling a bit more in this sound on future albums. Is this the way to go in the post Alexandra Lawn era?
Regardless, this song is just the thing needed to make your Wednesday just a bit better. So whether you’re hanging out in your cubicle tapping your foot or dancing in your living room, enjoy.
Written by Greg Dahman