Last Thursday some of the key players in the Los Angeles record store community gathered with a pair of bona fide music legends to celebrate the launch of this year’s Record Store Day, which will take place on April 19th. The press conference panel was hosted by Michael Kurtz, co-founder of Record Store Day, and also included representatives from Amoeba Music itself and the excellent Origami Vinyl and Vacation Vinyl, both located further down on Sunset Boulevard.
Local artists were represented by Samuel Lopez of the up-and-coming Tapioca and the Flea and Julie Edwards of Deap Vally. As for those legends… well, this year’s Record Store Day ambassador is none other than the legendary Chuck D of Public Enemy fame, and he was joined on stage by John Densmore of The Doors (arguably THE Los Angeles band), which led to a pretty sincere love-in.
Everybody chipped in with the reasons why Record Store Day is so important and why the ongoing survival of record stores is so crucial to a local community. Chuck D praised record stores as both cultural library extensions and meeting places. Kurtz spoke about how the obituary for the record store was written eight years ago, and yet in the last two years around twenty new record stores have opened in Los Angeles alone. It’s safe to say that the industry is in an unexpected state of rude health.
As for this year’s list of Record Store Day releases, there are some eye-catching collector’s items to look out for. The Velvet Underground’s album Loaded will be released on a pink, white, and black splattered vinyl, which sounds pretty amazing. Cult indie band Built To Spill will see the first ever vinyl release of their debut album, Ultimate Alternative Wavers, and I know I’ll be getting up early to ensure I can get hold of a copy of Husker Du’s Candy Apple Grey on grey vinyl.
For a full list of releases and to give yourself a chance to assemble your own shopping list for the day, visit the Record Store Day website. It’s also worth checking back to the site between now and April 19th for any possible news of in-store performances.