Record Store Day // Interview // Rise Music // Cheltenham
I caught up with Ben from at my local independent record store, Rise music in Cheltenham, to find his thoughts about Record Store day.
Q. So Ben as someone who works at an independent music shop, what excites you most about Record Store Day?
Well its hard to a finger on it really. I guess it’s a combination of things. It’s the product itself as there are always fantastic releases out. It’s also the excitement of the day with the whole host of bands and djs we have perform in store on the actual day, makes for a really great day. It’s also great to see the store packed, the buzz on Record Store Day is always incredible and you can feel the excitement in the air.
Also Record Store Day is all about our loyal regulars, these are the people who come into the store week in week out and have supported us since we opened. It’s great to see them all so excited. It’s also great to hear about something positive in the world of music retailing, it’s a tough environment out there and events such as Record Store Day make people realize they can still buy music on the high-street.
Q. Lots of artists from the very big to the very small release special records on Record Store Day. Why do you think such a wide range artists get involved?
I guess for a lot of artists they grow up going to their local record store and attending events such as Record Store Day. So they know how much it means to the fans and the stores.
Also I think it helps that amazing artists such as David Bowie and Iggy Pop get on board with Record Store Day, they sing its praises and almost demand that people go along and they release things to help support the industry. Artists like this give Record Store Day the stamp of approval, which signals to other artists this is something with being involved in.
A lot of bands see Record Store Day as a really good cause as it helps bring attention to local record stores, shops like Rise. Independent record stores are more than a place to buy music, they a social place where likeminded people can meet and share their music tastes.
Also Record Store Day gives those big artists such a Bowie to produce something very limited, as they normally produce for the masses. Record Store Day also means artists can collaborate on unique tracks like Feist and Mastodon this year with their 7” Feistodon. Also another great thing about Record Store Day, is that when people come into the store they might be after a Flaming Lips 7” but they may also pick up something by a band they hvent really heard of but they give them a go.
Q. So which of this year’s Record Store Day releases are you most excited about?
I'm a huge bob Dylan so im really excited for the boxset as is a really special release.
There is also a track by Gregory Porter - 1960 What ? coming out .I’ve been after this single on vinyl for ages. For those of you that aren’t aware of Gregory’s work he makes really soulful, gritty jazz music and 1960 What? is a great track.
A band called the Oscillation are also releasing 2 brand new tracks for record store day.they have 2 albums out so far so it will begreat to hear new stuff from them.iys not just the big releases that im excited rsd its some of smaller ones too.
Q. There’s been a huge increase in the sales of vinyl recently. Would you say that Record Store Day has had a part to play in this?
Yes I think Record Store Day has had a huge impact on the sales of records, it really drives awareness and passion for the format. Independents have never really stopped selling vinyl but the number of people coming into the store to buy vinyl has definitely increased. Sometimes we can get 20 copies of a new release and sell them all really quickly, that would never have happened a few years ago
Also think that sales of could have gone up as more and more artists are releasing songs on vinyl. I think download codes have also contributed to the increase in sales. Download codes in vinyl’s means people can hold the physical format in their hands and treasure it but they also have the flexibilty to stick their music on their iPod and take it anywhere.
There's also been a huge resurgence of young people getting into vinyl. This whole new era of fans are buying new albums but on vinyl instead of CD or downloading.
Q. What would be your absolute dream Record Store Day release?
That's a tricky one. I would probably have to pick some of the sessions on the whole heap of tapes I have in a box somewhere at my Mum’s house. These are tapes filled with shows and sets I record off the radio; these were the days before iPlayer. The tapes are filled with bits from the Mark Radcliffe show and the Evening Sessions off Radio 1. I used to listen to these tapes over and over, they have so many memories.
To find out more about Rise music click here - they do vintage clothes too :)