Record Store Day, Milwaukee, 2012
I had to work and was not able to attend Record Store Day this year. My wife was nice enough to get up early and arrive an hour before the store opened to buy records for me.
Happy Fifth Anniversary, Record Store Day (RSD)! As it is the tradition, I headed to the Exclusive Company first. I arrived at 7 am (and a nice 33 degrees) and was 30thin line. You could tell who the seasoned veterans were – crumpled paper with list of what they wanted; the “flippers”- official RSD list with ultra rare items heighted and the newbies- no list, seasonally undressed, and arriving at five minutes to open with puzzled facial expression once they saw the line. The Exclusive Company team really knows how to run a successful RSD. They have in store performances and DJs throughout the day, a food drive for the local food pantry, and a very well set up display of all the items for the event. Those who had arrived early and waited patiently were awarded with going in right at store open and selecting their items first, before the rest of the crowds could shop. The majority of the crowd wanted Flaming Lips, Mastodon, Stax Box Set, Eddie Vedder, White Stripes and Phish. I was surprised on the selection at Exclusive Company. Even though they had small quantities, they had a lot of titles. Some of the items I picked up were records by Devo, Beach House, Destroyer, Pelican and Paul Weller. In the time I was in the store, many items were gone when I left.
Shortly thereafter, I headed over to see Dan and the gang at RushMor Records in Bay View. Shoppers were picking up Misfits, Black Keys, Pussy Galore, and Iggy Pop. I picked up the Lee Hazelwood that I was most excited about. Because the store is small, some releases were behind the counter. Several people would walk into the front door (it’s a small store) and say rather loudly “Do you have the Phish”, which they didn’t. Then the person would either walk out or ask to be put on the waitlist. Those made me laugh. At both locations, I heard a few aging hipsters complain about how RSD is “bogus” and “ruining things”. It’s not. While RSD pretty much happens in my home once a week, it’s a good day to remind people to shop their independent record stores and local businesses. I hope the Mayans were wrong; see you next year RSD 2013.