Record Store Day - The Documentary, and Why Record Store Day Is for the Children



Y’all ready for Record Store Day? I know I love the holiday season. But I doubt I love it as much as filmmaker Jason Wilder Evans. His documentary Record Store Day — The Documentary (not to be confused with Brick and Mortar and Love — the RSD doc that screens tomorrow at the Nashville Film Festival and at Grimey’s during its big RSD bash) comes out at midnight tonight here, though you can watch almost a half hour of it up above.

Like Brick/Mortar/Love, some of this flick is filmed at Grimey’s. (Natch.) Skip to 11 minutes and 45 seconds to briefly see see Cortney Tidwell putting her John Hancock on a copy of KORT’s Invariable Heartache and Grimey’s co-proprietor Doyle Davis waxin’ wise about the retail rebirth of hot wax. Or skip to 5:55 and LOL at former (sniff) REM guitarist Peter Buck doing his damnedest to look like George Washington.

The extended preview also includes live footage of bouncy Seattle indie-rock-and-not-even-remotely-rap-metal-sounding duo Telekinesis, whose Michael Benjamin Lerner admits (on camera!) that the first record he “probably” ever bought was “the one With ‘The Nookie’ on it” by Limp Bizkit (clean version). Lerner, a ginger, looks evermore red-faced as he admits this. And I find myself rather embarrassed at how I twice mentally corrected him — noting that “The Nookie” actually appeared on da Bizkit’s sophomore LP, Significant Other, not [sic] Three Dollar Bills, Y’all (as he erroneously claims), the correct title of which is actually Three Dollar Bill, Yall$. I was never a fan, but I guess I watched enough MTV at the turn of the century to know that. And I am ashamed of it. I guess.

One point of personal biography I’m not ashamed of, though, is that unless you count the copy of Brian Adams’ Reckless that my sister bought a 5-year-old me at the mall in 1986 (hey, kids just wanna rock, right?), the first record (cassette, actually) that I ever bought was The Rolling Stones Decca/London Records singles comp Hot Rocks 1964-1971 (also on cassette). I’d like to say that means that I had impeccable taste from Day One, but that would require editing out how I also bought Bon Jovi’s 7,800° Fahrenheit in the same purchase. “But Bon Jovi videos were on Nickelodeon. I had only a second grade education at that point, and had not yet learned that 7,800° F was (and still is) the temperature at which rock melts,” I say to God as I go down on my knees and beg for forgiveness.

The reason I bring all of this up is because I fear and lament that, unlike Lerner and myself, many kids of today and tomorrow won’t ever get to have “first records" memories. “First MP3 I ever downloaded,” “First Spotify playlist I ever made” and “first iTunes purchase” just don’t have the same ring to them, regardless of their crisp, digital fidelity. But Record Store Day and the resurgence of the underdoggedly timeless vinyl medium that it celebrates give me hope for the children, as it cyclically redefines the term “first record I ever bought” to literally refer to the first flat, round, spiral-grooved, snappin’, poppin’, tangible plate of pressed polyvinyl chloride that someone ever buys.

Gone are the days of helpless kids harboring secrets of aural and mental abuse at the hands of bad musicians. And when I think of it that way, I kind of envy future generations. Instead of having to sheepishly cop to youthful indiscretions like popping their audiophiliac cherries with dreck like Limp Bizkit and Bon Jovi, they’ll grow up and be able to say something like, “My first record was Big Star’s Third (Test Pressing Edition). I got it on Record Store Day in 2011.” Of course, kids are never totally out of harm’s way — cross-generational instrument and audience abusers 311 do have a Record Store Day release this year. But fuck them, so do Lee Hazelwood, David Bowie, DEVO, T. Rex, The Clash and a sprawling list of others that you can check out here and that kids of all ages can snag tomorrow morning at brick-and-mortar record stores, wherever brick-and-mortar record stores are found.

Can’t get enough Record Store Day? Then surf over this-a-way to WPLN's site, where Scene contributor Randy Fox penned and podcasted a piece on Record Store Day and the resurgence of vinyl. Among Fox's interviewees are fellow Scene contributor Lance Conzett (who, with dusty fingers, is even shown posing proudly with his growing record collection) and, of course, Grimey's Doyle Davis. Enjoy and have a happy Record Store Day!

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