“The four building blocks of the universe are fire, water, gravel and vinyl.” – Dave Barry
Kids, fancy a history lesson? In a land far, far away there was a time when the only way to listen to music was to remove huge frisby-looking objects from their well kept sleeves and to put them under a mystical looking player with the steadiness of a surgeon and hope you didn’t scratch it. There were no iPod’s, no Spotify and no earphones to aid you from talking to anyone. In the 1980’s there were more than 2,200 record stores in the UK, but the advent of music downloads on the internet has seen shops close, shutters pulled down and owners re-train. But that was then. Vinyl has made a comeback and risen out the ashes like a phoenix.
Record Store Day comes but once a year but thanks to a dedicated few, it is a ritual that the people of Liverpool can rejoice in whenever they please. Held on the third Saturday of April each year to celebrate the culture of the independently owned record store, the day brings together fans, artists, and thousands of independent record stores across the world. Here’s a list of places to visit and things to do this Saturday (22nd April) in Liverpool:
Enter Jacaranda, a cornerstone in Liverpool’s music scene that famously hosted The Beatles when they originally met. Alongside their reopening they’ve opened a record shop unlike any other in the city. It’s a coffee shop and a record store that also morphs into a drinking space as you get further into the evening. Jacaranda Records and Getintothis have combined forces to bring an array of awesome activities to the iconic venue for this years Record Store Day, on Saturday 22 April.
With the annual event for lovers of all things vinyl seeing plenty of huge acts release special one off items for fans to snap up, The Jacaranda’s all day extravaganza will see some of the brightest new talents around showcase their sounds. Jacaranda Records are giving everyone the chance to win £100 worth of official releases as well as a whole host of other prizes. Simply bring down your favourite record between 6pm and 9pm and let them play it in store. There’ll be exclusive record store day releases, live bands and DJ’s from 11am until 6. More info here.
Photo by mobilevirgin
Dig Vinyl’s inspiration to open up was to rage against the machine, to offer a physical record shop in a city steeped in musical history. It doesn’t have a shop front, you can’t just stumble upon this place, you have to be in the know. It opened its “doors”, so to speak, to the public on where else but Bold Street? They’re located in the basement beneath Soho and truly define what it is to be a hidden gem as well as ironically stocking a shed load of them. They are more than just a retail shop, they are a source of knowledge in their hub for those who love music in which they offer like minded souls a step out of the frantic world to discover new music.
Photo by Getintothis
When you talk about places with a cult following, Probe Records always come to mind. A compact music store, established in 1971, selling vinyl LPs and singles, CDs and T-shirts. Sounds normal, right? You’re so wrong. Throughout the decades, near enough half of Liverpool have a memory from Probe Records and more often than not is a fond one. It’s old school in Probe, and people like it that way. There might not be a big red ribbon to cut or some confetti to sling but any visit to Probe is special.
photo by Antonio Franco
Buyers Club is the definition of a hidden gem. So much so, that Google Maps didn’t even have a clue what we were on about when trying to find it. It is just beyond the Old Blind School, a narrow corridor of nothingness that doesn’t look like anything special. But, how often we’ve found that down these unassuming roads we come across the most special of spaces. To celebrate this year’s Record Store Day, they are collaborating with some of Liverpool’s best collectors, sellers and selectors across the day and evening on Saturday 22nd April. Entry is free to all from 12 Midday until well into the evening. More here.
Record Store Day 2017 is a nationwide event celebrating independent vinyl retailers. Now in it’s 10th year this promises to be the biggest and best. The premise is simple: hundreds of special releases are produced specifically for Record Store Day and are only available from your local independent record stores. With releases confirmed from David Bowie, Prince, Iggy Pop, Slaves, British Sea Power, Goat, Hawkwind, Julian Cope, and THE SOUNDTRACK FROM SPACE JAM. As if that wasn’t enough they’ve also organised live performances from Lucy Styles and Dan Wilson. More here.
The reason record shops are still important is that they are seen as a focal point for the followers of their chosen specialities. Opened in 1989, they caught the tail end of the acid house scene before branching into deep house, techno, electro, breaks, trance and hardcore. A place for budding and established DJ’s to huddle round the decks. The legendary record shop are fully stocked and ready for you from 8am onwards. Patrons can also expect a special in store acoustic set from Tom Hingley later in the afternoon. Tom Hingley shot to fame as lead singer of revered Manchester sixties keyboard-led heroes Inspiral Carpets, before turning his attention to a solo career.
Picture by Getintothis