Record Store Day 2012: Ten essential releases to chase
What started as a little cry for help among a union of independent record retailers a decade ago has become in 2012 a roar: Record Store Day is upon us, and when it takes place April 21, an avalanche of limited-edition vinyl will arrive from many of the best labels and artists in the world.
Scouring the list is overwhelming, as each new item offers both desire and a pang of acceptance that acquiring it is going to take work, strategy and timing. Last year, the line outside Amoeba Music Hollywood stretched down the block, and similar traffic jams were reported both at Origami and Vacation Vinyl on Sunset. You can see the whole list of items by clicking here, but for a quick glimpse at some of the cooler offerings, see below.
The Civil Wars, "Billie Jean" 7". The hot folk duo covers Michael Jackson's classic. Limited edition of 1,000.
Carolina Chocolate Drops/Run DMC, "You Be Illin' " 7". Old-time geniuses cover old-time rappers, with the original on the B-side. Edition of 3,000.
The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwendz, double LP. Limited to 10,000 copies, this new Lips record features the Oklahoma psychedelic rock band collaborating with, among others, Kesha, Nick Cave, Chris Martin and Erykah Badu.
Mastodon/Feist split 7". The heavy-duty Atlanta metal band Mastodon and the Canadian singer-songwriter Feist struck up an unlikely friendship, which resulted in this single. Mastodon covers her "A Commotion," while Feist covers the band's "Black Tongue." Limited to 5,000.
Pharcyde, "Bizarre Ride II, The Singles Collection." The great L.A. rap group collects its early work on this seven-volume series of 7" put out by Delicious Vinyl.
Soundtracks to the films "Pretty in Pink" and "The Breakfast Club." Relive your youth with, respectively, pink and white vinyl copies of two John Hughes classics. Limited to 2,000 each.
Sarah Watkins featuring Fiona Apple, "You're the One I Love." Two friends from the Largo community team up on an Everly Brothers song. Limited to 3,000 copies.
Ralph Stanley, "Single Girl"/"Little Birdy" 78 rpm. Tompkins Square Records is pressing up a series of old recordings on its original format. In addition to this bluegrass classic, the label will also issue work by Luther Dickinson. Each limited to 750 copies.
Various Artists, "Never to Be Forgotten: The Flip Side of Stax." A collection of B-sides of the seminal Memphis soul label, issued by the experts at Light in the Attic Records, comes as 10 separate 45s in a magnetic flip-top box. Limited to 4,000.
-- Randall Roberts @liledit
Photo: Jimmy Fallon as "Tebowie." Credit: Lloyd Bishop / NBC.