Category Archives: Record Store Day 2013

No Ordinary Day–Record Store Day 2013

It is the day after Thanksgiving here in America.  Many, many people were either out late or really early hoping to catch some amazing deal during a “Black Friday” sale.  The Friday after Thanksgiving is referred to as Black Friday here as countless people go out and shop, which kicks off the winter holiday purchasing season.  Now, I typically avoid anything to do with shopping on this day.  I am not a big fan of crowds like that where there is little room to move and everyone is impatient and quite possibly, rude.  No thanks.  Not for me.  I would rather shop online, thank you very much!  This year, however, I did have one reason to get off the couch, face the cold (It was nine degrees here this morning.  Br…) before noon on a day off.  What was that reason?  Simple.  It is Record Store Day.  The purpose behind the day is to celebrate vinyl and independent record stores.  How is it celebrated?  New, often limited edition, vinyl is released, which can be purchased in these record stores.  Usually, it is in April as was the last one, which a blue edition of Is There Something I Should Know was released to celebrate its 30 year anniversary.  Anyway, this year, one of the new, limited edition vinyls was one from Duran Duran called “No Ordinary EP”.  This EP features three songs performed live at Tower Records in Hollywood, California, on May 15, 1993.  The three songs are Come Undone, Notorious and Hungry Like the Wolf.  This limited edition is the first time these live tracks have been released on vinyl.  How limited is it?  5000 copies were made.  What else is cool about it?  It s a 10″ on white, opaque vinyl.  I admit it.  I really like colored vinyl.  Can’t help it.  I’m a sucker that way.

In planning my weekend, I knew that I was going to go visit my local record store to purchase this.  I knew that they would have it as I check a few weeks ago.  That said, I had no idea how many copies

there would be so I figured it would be good to err on the side of caution and go early.  I also figured I could blog about it, too.  To that end, I was out the door by 9:30 this morning.  My local record store, Strictly Discs, is located on a fun, little street that features many small, independent shops.  I always enjoy going into this record store for a couple of reasons.  First, it reminds me of my childhood.  How many of us remember going to the record store to buy a brand new album from a favorite band?  Thinking back, I remember riding in the car twenty minutes to the nearest “mall” to get my copy of Notorious, when it came out in November 1986.  For me, these trips were special.  At this point, there was no local record store in my small town.  No, trips to the record store required planning and convincing on my part.  I had to prove to my parents that it was worth their time and gas money.  I distinctly remember the excitement bubbling inside as I walked through the doors to the small mall to increase my pace to the record store.  Of course, I knew exactly where it was and nothing ever distracted me from hitting that shop first.  Then, I would walk in and see people milling about, looking, listening, chatting with enthusiasm.  It always seemed like a fun, cool place, even though, this record store of my youth was nothing special and matched countless others like it around the country.  I still loved it and everything I could and did purchase from there.

This current record store is very different.  It is cool.  It has style.  While it sells CDs as well, the basement is filled entirely with vinyl.  Walking down there is like walking into a treasure chest of sorts.  It requires looking for one’s favorites but always feels worthwhile.  This leads me to the second reason that I love going to that store.  It shows me that vinyl is still alive and well.  It also shows that people still do love buying a whole album.  While there have been many changes with how people purchase and consume music, some constants, one of the important ones, remain.  I arrived at my local record store to find a crowd of people inside.  There was such a line of people paying for their purchases that I struggled to get around them to head to the basement of vinyl.  Downstairs, The Record Store Day albums were place in the center of the room.  Just like when I was a child, I was focused on getting exactly what I came for.

Where is Duran Duran?  Where is the EP?  I am excited but also anxious.  What if they didn’t really have it?  What if someone bought all of the ones they were getting in?  Should I just ask?  I had to remind myself to relax and enjoy the search.  In reality, it didn’t take me long to find today’s prize.  I knew what the cover would look like and could identify it immediately.  I grabbed my copy, held it close to me and did some more searching, just in case other finds awaited me.  What is really funny about this is that 1993 isn’t my favorite era.  I don’t really need a live version of Come Undone or even Hungry Like the freaking Wolf.  Yet, there is something to be said for going into a record store and getting something NEW from Duran Duran.  No matter what it is from them, it still feels exciting.  The fan in me bursts through and can’t be denied.  Then, of course, I come home and hop online.  My Facebook and Twitter are both filled with friends holding up their purchases, their copies of the EP.  That makes me smile, too!  It may not be an ordinary day but it is a good day to be a Duranie.

-A

Record Store Day Update

Just a quick update on the release for Record Store Day.  As I’m sure many know, there will be a blue vinyl release of Is There Something I Should Know.  In my very humble opinion, this seems like an easy sell to any fan.  Is There Something I Should Know did very well on the charts, and blue vinyl?  Who wouldn’t want that??  I know that I was very excited to hear that I could buy my favorite song on vinyl of my favorite color.

Until about a week ago, when I started noticing that it was nowhere to be found on any of the release lists for the US.  Duran Duran then put out their own news byte on duranduran.com yesterday, announcing where the record could be purchased.  The US is not on this list, and so it will not be available.

I won’t pretend to understand the music industry or the business side of the band. I am fully aware that there are many moving parts, and a lot of it – I couldn’t possibly care any less about. That said, I don’t understand the decision NOT to have it released here. I don’t know who or what company is in charge of such decisions, but quite frankly it’s one of the more bewildering things I’ve witnessed as a fan.

Let’s just recap a bit here – the song was released in 1983 and shot to #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts here in the US.  It sold over a million copies here in the states. Last I checked, the band had a substantial amount of fans here in the US…and I would venture to guess that many of them have in fact heard of Is There Something I Should Know, and would probably want to own this version on vinyl. I have no idea how much business can be expected on Record Store Day, but I do know that in order to go and buy something on that day – I would have needed to be up and at most of the stores in my area at around 7:00am to line up.  Yes, lines really are that long, and people really do snap up the copies of whatever limited editions are being offered.  I’m not going to assume that everyone would run for Duran Duran first, but I have no reason to believe my fellow Duranies in this area wouldn’t have bought copies as well.  Perhaps I’m missing the point.  In fact, I’m sure of it.

Moreover, I don’t know what it actually takes to release something like this – a special “record store day” edition, but I can’t imagine it’s any harder to press copies and ship them out here than it is to do the same for other countries such as: Hong Kong, Korea, Croatia, Serbia, Slovenia, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic & Hungary, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Austria, Greece, Italy, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, UK, Israel or Russia….and even MORE curiously, they are going to ship this thing to New Zealand but not Australia??  It’s going to Hong Kong, but not Japan? What?? Again, I really don’t understand the industry, but you have to wonder what goes through the heads of the people who plan these things. Don’t you?

Sure.  I could probably find a friend to buy an extra copy and send it to me – I would gladly pay for the record and shipping of course. This is definitely not the end of the world, I am not calling for the immediate downfall of Duran Duran, nor am I going to say nasty things about DDHQ – that’s unproductive and completely ineffective. Again, I have no idea how these things are decided or why. 

I just don’t have to always LIKE the end result.

-R