South Floridians will line up at record stores across the region Saturday in celebration of Record Store Day.
The annual retail holiday started more than a decade ago and draws many to their independent local stores across the world. Miami record store owner Lolo Reskin says vinyl records are “the enduring physical format for music.” Her store, Sweat Records, will be hosting all-day festivities in Miami Saturday, as will Shawn Kayes' store Radio-Active Records in Fort Lauderdale. Along with DJs and bands playing at the party, Radio-Active Records will host a panel discussion about the future of vinyl.
Reskin and Kayes joined Sundial to talk about Record Store Day and the vinyl music industry in South Florida.
WLRN: How important are in-store sales compared to digital in such a digital world?
RESKIN: To us we see vinyl as the enduring physical format for music. It's outlasted all the others. It's resurged like in a way that no one ever anticipated. It's been around for a while now..and now it's back in the mainstream. There's a record player for Captain Marvel (the movie). And so records are super popular and they've been that way since 2006 -- now that's sort of when they say the resurgence started. To us it's as enduring a format as books are for literature.
Shawn, how is your store doing it in a digital age?
KAYES: I think there's enough people out there who like to come to a physical shop and not be stuck at their computers. So it's so refreshing to walk to a good-old-style music shop where the people who work there like all kinds of music. I think that's one of the main attractions. In fact, when you listen to music on vinyl you're generally listening to it through speakers rather than through ear buds or headphones and so it's a more social way to listen to music.
Usually there's a party that goes on during Record Store Day. It's almost like Christmas, this is a big day for you guys. Tell me about some of the parties that you have going on.
KAYES: People start lining up about 4 o'clock in the morning or so. So at about 6 a.m. we've got somebody bringing coffee because these people are going to need it. We will have various DJs doing such an act and that's all day.
RESKIN: People line up really early because early people get dibs on the best stuff. (For Record Store Day) stores have to sign a pledge saying that we're going to abide by all the official rules. The rules say you can't open before 8:00 a.m., Eastern Standard Time. We've got DJs in the store all day, giveaways and fun stuff.
Shawn, you're going to have a panel discussion about the future of record retail for Record Store Day. What do you think is the future?
KAYES: Got to keep it going. People rejected vinyl because supposedly a better format, CDs, and what's happened throughout the history of music is that a better format comes out the older formats disappear. But vinyl records never truly went away. And about 2000, 2001 we started playing nothing but records ... and people seemed to see it and that's how we built our business: just trying to get people what they want to be on it which was to listen to more vinyl records rather than be trapped in their CD.