This past Saturday was the big event day for Indy record stores nationwide, and by all accounts traffic was up significantly in the days leading up to, and record crowds on the day itself. Our own Kerry Doole stood for several hours at a couple of stores in Toronto's hipper districts, shelling out several hundred dollars to acquire rare vinyl and curios.
Team Canada captain Tim Baker, operations manager for the Sunrise Records chain by day, writes us with his own assessment of the 8th annual.
"I can tell you that the 6 Sunrise locations even without the two Yonge Street stores came within 20% of last year's numbers. Biggest sellers were Metallica's No Life cassette, Foo Fighters, White Stripes, Bowie-Changes, Johnny Cash-Live in Prague, Citizen Dick, Jimi Hendrix, Mystery Artists' 7" (Husker Du and Ramones ("Sheena Is A Punk Rocker"), Doors-Strange Days in mono, Grandmaster Flash, Syd Barrett/r.e.m, Sam Roberts, and Kevin Kiner.
Continuing: "We had over 170 Independent stores participating across the country this year. Some stores reported late arriving shipments from some suppliers, but it wouldn't be Record Store Day without that "I'm shitting myself" feeling we've become accustomed to. The Majors did a very good job getting getting us what we needed. The Glass is full.
And in Ottawa, Compact Music store owner Ian Boyd reports much the same thing. "Record Store Day was the best ever by hundreds of units. I think all indies had strong days and I suspect cumulative totals in Ottawa alone to be over 100,000 sales."
Vinyl may be a niche market, but the fans are supportive, willing to shell out big dough and the event itself makes it a good news story for the music biz in general.