Last Stop CD Shop on 10th Street is holding an all-day “Celebration of Local Artists” to mark this year's Record Store Day.
Record Store Day is when retailers around the United States and the United Kingdom come together to celebrate and raise awareness of independent music stores on April 21. Only “a retailer whose main primary business focuses on a physical store location, whose product line consists of at least 50 percent music retail, whose company is not publicly traded and whose ownership is at least 70 percent located in the state of operation” are able to participate, so in other words you won't see it at Best Buy or Wal-Mart.
The day was created by Portland, Maine record store employee Chris Brown (no, not that one) as a way to promote his local store, and it has grown to include over 1,000 record stores in the U.S. alone. Any stores participating can celebrate in their own way.
“We really want to make it a local event,” manager Josh Johnson, AKA Beardless Last Stop Employee, said. “We reached out to a bunch of people, told them what was going on and asked them what they wanted to do.”
An art show/reception will be held in the morning from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., after which a fashion show featuring the styles of Bambi Knutson (founder of local clothing company Label) will take place. Afterwards a rotating stable of over a half-dozen local musicians will play until 8:30 p.m. The full line-up includes Hello Signal, JR Kaufman, More Than Enough, Todd Jeremtowski, Mike Devaney, Lee “El Dub” Walsh, Darin Kaihoi, The Tinder Box, The Hired Hands and Infaux.
Those playing, like Infaux's Chris Steinstra, still hold a place in their heart for record stores. “I used to live in Mitchell, and I would go to the record store there after school. It's a good place for people to meet and see what shows are going on,” Steinstra said. “I think what record stores are good for has changed over time, since people a lot of people don't buy albums anymore. There's fewer of them, and the ones that have evolved have stayed open.”
This is the first time Last Stop CD Shop has participated, but the event is in its fifth year. Major record companies like EMI and Warner Bros Vinyl are official sponsors, but since the stores are independent, they set their own specials and/or sales. Artists including The Black Keys, Mastodon, Switchfoot, Arcade Fire and the Red Hot Chili Peppers are planning releases to coincide with the unofficial holiday. Artists playing at Last Stop CD Shop will have their merchandise out as well.
“We'll have our albums there, and our bracelets,” Steinstra said. “[Our albums] are really cheap anyways, like four bucks.”