I know some of you must be tired of buying the same old mp3's off itunes, or the same old cookie cutter CD's from any of the big box chains I refuse to plug here. There is a solution, and its called your local independent record shop.
There are 700 of these shops in the U.S. and they need your support. What most people don't realize, or take for granted, is the critical role these shops play in the community. In a world where digital rules, local music shops still do things the old fashion way. They deal in vinyl, used and new. They have in store shows with local musicians, and they have killer promotions and events on RSD. But thats not all, when you go in there, you will find that the friendly face that greets you is someone who enjoys music as much as you do. They are knowledgeable, and they live and work in the same community you do. Plus, when you spend your hard earned cash in one of their stores, you know the money is staying in the community.
Sure, you may be able to save a buck or two per LP if you buy online or at a big box store. But why take the chance? Have you ever seen how online stores ship their vinyl? Have you ever seen how big box chains store their vinyl? Well, its not pretty.
Why would you download horrible, shrill sounding mp3's when you could spend an afternoon at a Randy's or a Slowtrain. Music was never intended to be listened to on headphones, I don't care what anyone says. Music by nature is communication, and communication requires participants. Music is meant to be shared with people, and there is no better way to spend time with people who LOVE music than at a record shop.
Still not convinced? Try this: Next time you are at a big box retailer buying music, ask the employee if they prefer Neil Young's solo work, or his albums with Crazy Horse. Ask them how excited they are about The New Pornographers upcoming album. The blank look on their face will say it all.
With that said I urge all my readers to not only support their local record shops on RSD but throughout the year. For they are the hubs of the local scene, its where the free thinkers feed their ears, and who knows, you may run into a musician or two.