How to Make the Most of Record Store Day Black Friday 2021 Online

Record Store Day is a celebration of the independent record store and its cultural impact, from hardcore collectors digging for rarities to vinyl newbies just starting their journey. Record Store Day Black Friday is the third and final event for 2021.

When is Record Store Day Black Friday?

Record Store Day Black Friday 2021 is scheduled for November 26, the Friday following Thanksgiving in the United States.

Historically, the main Record Store Day event falls in April. However, in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, RSD organizers planned two separate socially distanced drops in summer 2021 to accommodate smaller crowds (and keep you coming back for more). This year’s events on June 12 and July 17 both saw massive record sales.

How does RSD Black Friday work?

Since 2008, artists and labels have scheduled the release of exclusive new material or coveted reissues, which are coordinated by the Record Store Day organizers. Beginning in 2010, the team also arranges a Black Friday drop. “Independently owned stores, especially record stores, are fantastic places to shop for gifts, and we see our RSD Black Friday efforts to promote these places in the face of a shopping frenzy as part of our overall mission to bring record stores to the spotlight,” reads the RSD site.

The Black Friday list is shorter than a typical RSD list but comparable in terms of big-name artists and sought-after titles. Inventory will vary depending on where you live or shop. Your favorite record store will request items through the RSD team, but that doesn’t guarantee that the store will get enough for everyone who wants one.

For the first 13 years, the limited nature of the event often created lines outside of local stores. Nowadays, RSD organizers and shop owners are going to great lengths to ensure social distancing and safe shopping. If you plan on visiting a store in person, check their website and social media channels to make sure you’re prepared for their COVID-19 guidelines. As always, respect local public health recommendations and be considerate to your store clerks and fellow shoppers.

Where can I buy RSD Black Friday releases online?

Finding Record Store Day Black Friday releases online will be easier than in previous years. Starting in 2020, record stores were allowed to list their RSD inventory online on the afternoon of the physical drop.

The following suggestions will help you navigate RSD virtually:

  • Check your favorite record store’s website for an online shop and reach out to confirm when they will be listing RSD titles online.
  • If you are searching for a specific RSD release, the easiest way to find it online the day of the drop will be to search for it by name.
    • The perk of searching for your desired title is that you can discover a new record store selling online and still support the RSD mission even if you’re not physically in-store.
    • Marketplaces like Discogs support independent sellers around the world, including record stores. As the information on RSD 2021 titles is submitted by the Discogs Community to the Database, the items will appear on the list of RSD releases. Details on the Black Friday releases will become available on Discogs on the day of the drop. Independent sellers are also active on eBay.

How much are RSD releases?

Great question. The short answer? It depends. The long answer? The very nature of Record Store Day creates exclusivity. Since every item is limited-edition, naturally, the demand is going to be a lot higher than the supply. Depending on the release, the value will appreciate over time. However, the initial drop price is typically standard for what you would pay for a special format (like a picture disc), a box set (especially those collector’s versions), colored vinyl, or a beloved reissue. The cost tends to be more expensive for titles that have fewer copies or more goodies.

Where can I find record stores near me?

Discogs runs VinylHub, an online database of record stores around the world. Use VinylHub to find record stores near you and take a look at the list of record stores selling on Discogs. The interactive VinylHub map on Discogs makes it easy to locate nearby stores, see their Discogs inventory, and follow them on social media for updates.

More information on Record Store Day Black Friday releases:

Check out Record Store Day for more information about the Black Friday drop on November 26. Discogs is not affiliated with the RSD organization, but we agree with their mission of bringing more people into record stores.

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