April 16, 2011

it’s the most wonderful time of the year.

Wake up kids: today is the Christmas, birthday, and Valentine’s Day of the indie music world all rolled into one. Record Store Day is in its fourth year today, and you would be smart to head down to your local independent record store to celebrate the vibrant role they all play in keeping good music alive. There are also a slew of Record Store Day exclusives being offered today, so maybe break that piggy bank to take with you as well.

In the spirit of celebrating everything that’s right about Record Store Day today, Fuel/Friends has a special giveaway pack for one lucky reader.

To note all the excellent new releases that will be available today for the first time, the first item in the pack is the debut record from The Head and The Heart on vinyl. Sub Pop is releasing their album today, now remastered and with “Rivers and Roads” on it, with expanded liner notes / sweet art. You know by now why I like them; or you can read what I wrote for Sub Pop. Can’t wait to hear the record on warm, crackly vinyl.

The second item in the gift pack is to note all the re-releases coming out on vinyl today. For the first time, Matt Costa‘s 2006 debut record Songs We Sing is coming out on vinyl through the good folks at Brushfire Records. This is a sunny acoustic gem of an album that will serve you well all summer long, also one that will sound great on vinyl.

And finally, Fingerprints Records in Long Beach –a terrific independent record store– is contributing a signed poster from the in-store they are doing today with Brett Dennen. I bet your local record store is having musicians play amidst the stacks today as well.

Fingerprints is doing their part to keep music vibrant with excellent in-store performances (that sometimes spill out onto the street) and a top-notch selection of music.

To enter to win the Fuel/Friends RSD 2011 prize pack, leave me a comment telling me what you are doing today and why. I’ll pick one winner at the end of the weekend. I am in Chicago, so a whole new city beckons. I have my Reckless Records tshirt to guide me.


  • When I was in college, I regularly walked over to Schoolkids Records on a regular basis to pick up new music. I’m looking forward to heading back there today to buy some great music and hear some great live music.

    natthedem — April 16, 2011 @ 9:13 am

  • Also in Chicago, I’ll be waiting in line outside Laurie’s Planet of Sound this morning in Lincoln Square. Then I’m planning to head to Saki this afternoon to shop some more and catch some bands — maybe the 1900s.

    The Dilemma — April 16, 2011 @ 9:26 am

  • Today? I am listening to the soothing sounds of Mark Kozelek while writing a paper about the use of propensity scores to control for confounding(!!!). As soon as I get an acceptable amount accomplished, I am off to Newbury Comics to drain my wallet.

    Jeff — April 16, 2011 @ 9:45 am

  • I’m on the Caltrain headed from San Jose to San Fran to visit good friends, hike Mt. Tam, traipse around the Lower Haight, and probably convince myself to move to California. Pretty happy about it!

    Mallory — April 16, 2011 @ 10:10 am

  • I plan to burn a few calories trekking up a sand dune park here in LA, make a huge batch of waffles to freeze for my week’s breakfast, drop by the local library to check out some new books and help my friend with making her wedding invitations. Hoping it’ll be a productive day!

    Pamela — April 16, 2011 @ 10:17 am

  • I am on holiday in the Western part of Norway. Today we went by ferry to a little village placed on the edge between the fjord and the mountains to visit a friend. We had coffee and cake and then he played his newest vinyl for us – Jens Carelius: The Architect. Of course he had preordered the limited white version and was very proud. When we got back to my boyfriend’s parents’ place, I bought it myself on the internet. Fabulous album.

    astrid — April 16, 2011 @ 10:33 am

  • Record Store Day was yesterday in the UK, but today, I’m driving to London, to play in an Australian Rules Football game tomorrow. The soundtrack will be The Head and the Heart (all the mp3s that this site has provided) and Typhoon.

    Alasdair — April 16, 2011 @ 11:09 am

  • I spent the better part of this morning both waiting and frantically browsing at Antone’s and Backspin Records in Austin. Was really hoping to find the Head and the Heart vinyl (I saw them 3 times at SXSW including an intimate MTV Hive/Yours Truly video shoot), but neither shop got it. In the end, I managed to come away with a few other personally coveted items like the Fleet Foxes vinyl, New Pornos 7″ and Adele 10″. This is the first time I have experienced the RSD madness outside of Portland, and it was great to chat with fellow record collectors excited about the chance to get their hands on exclusive releases in the Live Music Capital of the World. Now I’m off to enjoy the sun at the UT-Austin baseball game!

    Brittany — April 16, 2011 @ 11:27 am

  • I’ve thrown aside the endless process of writing and editing my thesis to stand in line outside of Slowtrain Records in SLC. The best little record store in the valley.

    Logan — April 16, 2011 @ 12:27 pm

  • i’ll be at ear wax in chicago blowing a paycheck on some new stuff and some gems i’ve been wanting for a bit. I plan on waking up early tomorrow, pot of coffee, read the sunday NYT and Trib and listen to each one. Nothing better.

    CJ — April 16, 2011 @ 1:23 pm

  • Today I woke up and headed down to Twist and Shout in Denver, but first went to Antone’s where things were a little less chaotic. I picked up the new Panda Bear, Wild Flag, Civil Wars, Nataniel Rateliff, Matt & Kim, Adele, and Beth Ditto. I had to wait in the check out line at Twist and Shout for almost an hour, but didn’t really mind because I got to visit with some old friends that I hadn’t seen in a long time. Now I’m going to ride the bike to a friends for a BBQ because it’s the perfect day for that.

    Stabba — April 16, 2011 @ 1:25 pm

  • This morning, I woke up at 6:45, stealthily trying to not make noise so I didn’t wake up my newborn daughter or sleeping wife. I picked up a friend and we waited for 2 and a half hours for Orlando, Florida’s Park Ave CDs to open up. We were like the 20th people in line, of what was eventually over 300 easily. I almost had a My Morning Jacket LP, but I did manage a copy of Syd Barrett, Karen Elson’s 7″ with the flowers pressed in, Tron, Regina Spektor and The White Stripes. Then I went back home to take over on baby duty. But now I have great new vinyl to listen to while feeding Elise bottles!!!

    Brandon Telg — April 16, 2011 @ 2:31 pm

  • It’s another snowy day here in the Northwoods of Wisconsin, so I will continue my day by going to a lecture by Eric Larsen (the Polar Explorer). The snow cancelled our Full Moon Paddling session for tonight, so I guess I’ll start packing and finish knitting my first plarn bag for Bag’kn It. (I’m collecting plastic bags, stripping them, and knitting them into longer-lasting bags.) I sure wish I could head out to a record store today, but unfortunately, we lack one in this relatively small town. I look forward to finding some new tunes anyway.
    I hope everyone’s enjoying their day!

    Allie — April 16, 2011 @ 3:13 pm

  • Woke up early, despite a hellish work week, to head over to Crooked Beats here in DC where I stood in a glorious line — despite the cold rain and wind — of at least 175 people waiting to get into the best record store in our nation’s capital. Scored the Kings of Leon, Fleet Foxes, and Phish record store day releases, as well as some other vinyl (Neutral Milk Hotel, Spiritualized, and the National). After dethawing — my pair of Chucks was soaked through and through — at my favorite local bar (which just got Bell’s Oberon on tap), I went to my local progressive church to get the necessary paperwork for my fiancee and I to get married this September. Off to dinner with good friends now — really couldn’t have been a better day, unless I win this contest and score The Head and the Heart LP, which was unfortunately not available earlier. Viva la vinyl. Hope everyone is spinning away tonight!

    Kevin — April 16, 2011 @ 3:42 pm

  • Turns out I’ll be downloading every Daytrotter Session today instead of buying anything, since Potsdam NY doesn’t have a record store anywhere within 2hrs+. Lucky me :(

    Amanda — April 16, 2011 @ 4:05 pm

  • You should go check out Bloodshot Records HQ while in Chi-town…..or the HideOut.

    I’m in Portland, where we are spoiled with great musicians, great record stores (Music Millenium), amazing micro-brews, food cart nirvana, and cheap public transportation.

    I’m just mindlessly working on the website for a wine project I am launching next month. It’s raining here, has been non-stop for about a month and a half now. They say we’re getting sun tomorrow. The anticipation is killing me. I could use a good dose of Vitamin D!

    Jeff V — April 16, 2011 @ 5:26 pm

  • Hooray for Reckless Records! A favorite CHI spot!

    Matt Hart — April 16, 2011 @ 5:46 pm

  • Zoe Muth & the Lost High Rollers new cd, Starlight Hotel, pre-released at Silver Platters in Seattle? Done! She even autographed it for my parents so they can start listening to better music…. Happy Record Store Day.

    earl — April 16, 2011 @ 8:34 pm

  • Headed over to Vintage Vinyl here in St. Louis today. Super low on funds this month, so I was actually just planning to browse and check out the live entertainment. Instead I left with the Dharohar Project and Fleet Foxes. Would LOVE to win The Head and the Heart on vinyl. Gonna see them here in the STL in June. Can’t wait!!!

    Nick — April 16, 2011 @ 11:45 pm

  • i was up in the San Juan Islands this weekend for my wife’s birthday. It was a fantastic time, except for missing RSD – especially since The Head and the Heart were playing an in-store at my favorite local record shop :(

    Daryn — April 17, 2011 @ 12:31 am

  • Today (which is a day after the RSD, sorry for the late reply) I’m recovering from last nights wonderful events with a show by Håkan Hellström being the highlight. Right now I’m at my home in Norrköping, Sweden, enjoying the lovely weather and drinking coffee (thank god for coffee). I plan to take a walk with my girlfriend and then just let the day seize me.

    Gustav — April 17, 2011 @ 5:15 am

  • Today will be a beautiful and slow day. I will go to my lovely church where sun will stream through the stained glass and make me think back to when I was a kid, when I believed when a ray of light burst out of the clouds, that was God coming down to Earth. One of my mentors from my master’s program will be there today. Seeing him there is the pew with be both strange and pleasing. I’ll sing with the choir, my voice melding with ten others to become one voice, one instrument.

    I’m hoping they’ll invite me out for brunch and we can have mimosas and quiche and talk about literature and all of the places we have yet to see.

    Later I’ll do more corrections on my thesis. I’ll study for my comprehensive exams. I’ll drink some chai on my porch and discover that the trees on the top of the mountains have begun to sprout leaves. I’ll listen to some music while I cook dinner; I’ll dance and sing in my socks. It will be a good day. Yes, a very good day.

    Brianna — April 17, 2011 @ 7:03 am

  • I headed to a few local shops, first Sound of Norristown, then Mad Platter CDs, and finally Bert’s in Wilmington, DE. Did most of my purchasing at Mad Platter, including some vinyl. Mostly I rummaged through the used CDs and found some gems, including the Damnwells and Damien Rice. Next year I’m going to get up early so that I can get some of the RSD exclusives.

    Greg — April 17, 2011 @ 9:11 am

  • I went to the Leechpit in Colorado Springs and picked up 6 LPs. They had and awesome buy 2 get 1 free deal going. Then biked over to the Saison and Farmhouse Ale festival at Trinity brewing. Finished the day with a Justin Townes Earle / The Decemberists show at UCCS. An exhausting, but perfect Saturday.

    Bryan — April 17, 2011 @ 10:03 am

  • Today, I’m sitting in front on my record player cataloging my collection while listening to all of yesterday’s bounty. Yesterday, woke up at 7, biked over to Twist, found my 15-20 albums I wanted, saw the checkout line, realized I’d never make it to work in time if I stayed, put all those albums back, went to work, cried (not really) and pouted (really), went back to Twist after work, and still managed to score almost all of those albums (minus Ryan Adams, White Stripes, Will Whitmore, Pink Floyd and Mississipi John Hurt). Winning!

    Koan — April 17, 2011 @ 11:02 am

  • Today will be spent with much rest after a hectic but fun Saturday. Managed to be second in line out of many people who showed up in Lexington KY, and thus succeeded in getting a lot of great records, as well as getting one of those records signed by My Morning Jacket who made an in store appearance.

    Record Store Day is awesome.

    chad — April 17, 2011 @ 11:22 am

  • I finished with the taxman Thursday & Friday – Uncle Sam left me just enough for a small spree – then put the pre-sleep mantra into my brain – “If I wake up before 5:30, I’ll go queue up at The Electric Fetus…” Of course that was enough to wake me up, so there I stood in the spitting rain/snow mix like a fool – 14th in line, just behind the three guys who brought a portable generator to run their coffee maker and waffle iron!

    After hanging out in the cold making new friends-in-music, I was able to get into a warm queue inside where the great staff at The Fetus had things well organized with more coffee & treats, prize drawings and the air of a carnival midway, minus the rides. I was able to secure my three most-sought items: the Mumford & Marling Dharohar Project EP, Crowded House’s North American Travelogue 2010 & the split 7″ from Villagers/Charlotte Gainsbourgh. I also made an impulse purchase of the Dylan in ’63 LP and a sweet gift for a certain nephew who happens to love a particular punk band. The only drawback was I ended up completely unmotivated to head back to The Fetus to catch any of the live music. They had a slew of great local artists at noon, then Low did a set at 4:00 but I only left the sofa to take in a few minutes of the festivities at Hymie’s Records – a wonderful vinyl shop a few blocks up the street.

    All in all, it was a great day!

    jimbo — April 17, 2011 @ 11:40 am

  • I spent Saturday afternoon eating my way through Hillcrest in San Diego and listening to summer jams on my iPod! Then headed over to M-Theory, but sadly I went too late so they had already sold out of everything I wanted =(

    But it was sunshiny and happy in San Diego, so it wasn’t too disappointing.

    Katherine — April 17, 2011 @ 1:52 pm

  • Although far from a record store here in rural Pennsylvania, I was tearing through my Jackson Browne records while catching up with Foals, Bright Eyes, and more on the Coachella feed!

    JD — April 17, 2011 @ 2:08 pm

  • I flew 3276 miles from New England to my Mom’s house in the foothills of the Scottish Highlands. It’s her birthday, and spending this sunny weekend with her is a better present than any tchotchke I could ever get from Bed Bath and Beyond.

    Gordon — April 17, 2011 @ 4:15 pm

  • Yesterday, I thought about venturing to the record store but it was hailing and there was a tornado warning. Instead, I looked over the short videos my friend took of the Joe Pug concert we saw earlier in the week and got excited for all the shows we are going to see in the future.

    Kennan — April 17, 2011 @ 5:42 pm

  • In 1979, the same year I came to Evanston for graduate school, Vintage Vinyl of Evanston opened. A great time for music, then and now, and the store has kept going in the same small location, with lots of fans. Went there yesterday for RSD and the owner noted that he had not “seen me in a while.” Too true. Too much downloading, not enough tactiling. Wonderful Kate Bush, Syd Barrett, Televison–then and now–but also now Mumford & Sons, The Civil Wars. Big deja vu smiles, all around.

    Jim H — April 17, 2011 @ 8:37 pm

  • Hope I’m not too late! I was at Easy Street Records in Seattle last night to see The Head and the Heart. What a great show! The store was packed and they really rocked it. I hope to see them at another show next week, but it was sweet to be part of the energy of RSD and welcoming THATH back to the NW.

    Easy Street was sold out of the record when I got there and although the band brought some more to sell after he show, I wasn’t able to stick around to get one.

    Allie — April 18, 2011 @ 12:03 am

  • Well, it rained (and rained and rained and rained and rained) on Saturday so, for the automotive disadvantaged like myself, Record Store Day was a wash.

    Today is much better. However, I will be forced to spend a grand total of two hours in line at the Post Office. It will be terrible but, thankfully, you posted a spring mix just in time.

    Jay — April 18, 2011 @ 2:24 pm

  • ok, first of all: y’all are AWESOME. seriously.

    i loved reading all about your days, and the ways you were finding and consuming good music and loving life. it made me really happy.

    the winner is JD because i felt sorry for him not living near a record store, and he clearly loves vinyl. congrats JD! i will email you for an address to send your prizepack to!

    viva la record store day. i got the frightened rabbit/twilight sad demos cassette (!), the nada surf 7″, and the new CD from numero group (i was in chicago so i figured it was appropriate)!

    browneheather — April 20, 2011 @ 3:14 pm

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

"I love the relationship that anyone has with music: because there's something in us that is beyond the reach of words, something that eludes and defies our best attempts to spit it out. It's the best part of us, probably, the richest and strangest part..."
—Nick Hornby, Songbook
"Music has always been a matter of energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel."
—Hunter S. Thompson

Mp3s are for sampling purposes, kinda like when they give you the cheese cube at Costco, knowing that you'll often go home with having bought the whole 7 lb. spiced Brie log. They are left up for a limited time. If you LIKE the music, go and support these artists, buy their schwag, go to their concerts, purchase their CDs/records and tell all your friends. Rock on.

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