Record Store Day 2018

4 Record Store Owners On Making The Most Of Record Store Day

With Record Store Day 2018 fast approaching, we’ve connected with four record store owners from the USA and Japan to ask them about what makes Record Store Day such a special occasion to their record stores.
The answers are enlightening in different ways, and they also show how creative record stores around the world get for this day. If you’re a record store owner, it’s a fun read that’s guaranteed to resonate, and may help you create new strategies and activities to celebrate Record Store Day in your own store.
Thanks to Jackpot Records, Record Station, Shuga Records, and HMV Japan for taking time to answer our questions and share their thoughts for this post!

Here’s How You Can Make the Most of Record Store Day:

Jackpot Records (Oregon, USA)

Jackpot Records 1

Isaac Slusarenko (on the left) with Steve Turner of Mudhoney

Isaac Slurasenko of Oregon’s Jackpot Records is enthusiastic about Record Store Day, as it’s always a big day for the store. They put a lot of effort into making this day a great experience for their customers every year. This is what they have lined up for the upcoming edition of Record Store Day:

This year we would like to focus on what makes Record Store Day special in our store. Since 2012, we have created yearly Record Store Day exclusive records on our label Jackpot Records. In the past, we’ve released: Devo – Live at Max’s Kansas City 1977, Green River’s 1984 Demos, a box set of Jandek records, Ken Kesey’s Acid Test, and many more! Last year’s special RSD release, Gil Melle – The Andromeda Strain (Original Electronic Soundtrack LP) won the award for Best Vinyl Reissue Package. All our RSD titles are limited one-time pressings and they always sell out.

Record Store Day line

Focusing on what we will be doing for RSD 2018, we are releasing The Wipers – “Live at the Met December 31st, 1982” & Sun Ra – “Pine Street Theatre, October, 28th, 1988”.  Both titles were recorded at concerts here in town and have never been heard before. We also will be putting out a ton of used LPs from a collection of over 100,000 records we purchased.

We also love to do different activities each Record Store Day. This year we will have DJ sets from DJ Dollar Bin (Steve Turner of Mudhoney), Patterson Hood (from Drive-By Truckers) Derek Smith (KMHD Jazz Station) and Nate Carson (from Witch Mountain). We’re excited for the return of the Vinyl Clairvoyant: it’s a yearly tradition that we all look forward to. The vinyl clairvoyant will predict your next record purchase! We also will have free limited tote bags loaded with goodies and the local coffee company Courier Coffee will be providing free coffee.

Vinyl Clairvoyant

As you can see, it’s going to be a nice day at Jackpot Records!

Record Station (Tokyo, Japan)

Record Station is a small record shop in Shimokitazawa, Tokyo. Did say small? We mean cozy! They focus on imported used vinyl, covering Hip Hop, R&B, Disco, Soul/Funk, and Jazz. They have been participating in RSD Japan and they have shared with us what makes Record Store Day so special on their record store. If you happen to be far away from Tokyo, you can also order from them on their Discogs shop.

Back in 2014, we focused our efforts on getting a lot of exclusive vinyl releases. We were very lucky to be able to be the sole seller of a Stones Throw 45 single. The sale was limited to 30 copies in Japan. The same year, we created a blog post promoting Record Store Day in Japan, we used the opportunity to educate the record collectors about Record Store Day (since it wasn’t popular in Japan at the moment) and to announce the exclusive release our customers would be able to buy at the store that day.

On Record Store Day, we always open the store a couple of hours earlier than normal, and also offer a 10% for used items. And this won’t come as a surprise to most of your readers, but social media channels are always important in order to promote your store exclusives and activities.

Shuga Records (Chicago, USA)

Adam Rosen is the owner of Chicago’s Shuga Records. He has spent a lifetime selling records. Today, Shuga Records is Chicago’s largest online record store. Record Store Day at Shuga Records is a party you definitely want to attend. Adam explains what makes this day such blast:
Every year we do a limited edition craft beer glass with Emporium Arcade Bar and Lagunitas Brewing. These glasses are limited to the first 420 RSD sales of the day. Usually, those are gone by noon.  We also have a full day of live bands from 12 until 6pm and DJs from 7 until 10pm. We have free donuts and coffee, raffles for rare records, posters, turntables… As you can see, Record Store Day at Shuga Records is a party! But there’s more, we also do a limited edition T-shirt, slipmat and lighter for RSD.
Shuga Records
While facing Record Store Day, I think having a good team behind our store helps the success. Every year, the four managers and I order RSD together because everyone here sees different customers that come in and see what they are buying and talking about. So I think letting your staff help is a key to success. I try to make it a fun day for me, my employees, and my customers. It’s almost like being able to throw a huge party while selling a ton of wax!
If you’re in Chicago, you can attend Record Store Day at Shuga Records.

HMV Record Shop (Tokyo, Japan)

HMV Record Shop surely will sound familiar to most of our community. It’s one of the biggest music chain shops in Japan specializing in vinyl in the Tokyo area. For these stores, Record Store Day is a huge opportunity to share the love of music with all their audience. These are the tips they have shared with us:

The communication strategy is key to keep our customers informed about the Record Store Day news. At HMV, we create a landing page to keep our customers updated about all the news. We also use our social media channels to educate and nurture our community on the Record Store Day culture.

We always open the store one hour earlier than normal for Record Store Day. For the event, we also have in store a special used vinyl sale including rare and new used records. On top of that, live performances, DJs, and talk shows help us to create a more festive and dynamic experience for all our customers. Finally, we also release many RSD items produced by our own label that are worth checking!

Support your local record stores! Head to your favorite record stores for this Record Store Day!

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