Cat’s Music grooves into 6th Record Store Day
It’s an eventful day for music fans and record collectors seeking the sounds of crackles and hisses that only come from records spinning on a turntable.
Saturday marks the sixth-annual Record Store Day (RSD), an international happening when independent record stores sell limited edition vinyl singles, LPs and CDs.
There is no set demographic or age. Cat’s Music Manager Billy Metts says every year kids and parents flock to seek out the tunes that mean so much to them.
Metts said this year there is an abundance of exciting RSD-only special releases. As of Wednesday morning about 70 special releases had arrived and he expects to have about 100 by the time doors open at 9 a.m. Saturday.
“It’s the most I’ve ever seen or had for a Record Store Day,” Metts said. “It keeps getting bigger. Every year as far as the stuff coming it keeps getting better. You’re talking 100-some releases . . . that’s big business.”
At some record stores, such as at Cat’s sister store Monster Music in Charleston, lines form long before the store opens. Certain records immediately fly off the shelves. Many of the records have never been released on vinyl or are reissues of those that have gone out of print.
Metts predicts this year the release that will vanish quickly are Coheed and Cambria’s “The Afterman: Descension (Big Beige Demos),” Phish’s “Lawn Boy” and David Bowie’s new single “The Stars Are Out Tonight.”
Metts’ personal favorites of the RSD-only items are The Misfits/Lemonheads split single of “Skulls,” the Husker Du’s “Amusements” single and Jason Isbell’s 45 rpm covers of Townes Van Zandt’s “Tecumseh Valley” and “Pancho and Lefty.”
Cat’s will feature the live music from 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. The Lungs start things off with what Metts calls post-punk indie, then singer-songwriter Joshua Jarman, followed by classic sounding hip-hop man Infamous C and Rik Billz, who is flying in from Detroit to perform, Metts said.
“Record Store Day is my New Year’s. I see people I haven’t seen in years, people who didn’t know there was a record store in Summerville.”
Record stores are a community gathering place for music fans and musicians looking for records that likely won’t be found. Conversations about an old band, a current local band or an anecdote often lead to laughs and sometimes “aha!” moments.
On the Wednesday gearing up to RSD Metts answered questions from customers looking for a certain song or DVD release as The Who’s debut album “My Generation” played over the PA and eventually come to an end.
“When in doubt, play ‘Jailbreak,’” Metts says of the Thin Lizzy album moments before he pushes play on the store’s house CD player as he smiles about the Irish hard rock band that he says has great ballads on their albums.
On Saturday Cat’s will have a sidewalk sale with cheap used CDs and records along with other discounts. “You can pull some real gems out of there.”