Since 2008, Record Store Day has grown into the world’s largest single-day music event, shining a light on the culture of the indie record store across the globe. In 2020, that world is different, so Record Store Day will be too, and is now scheduled to be celebrated with special, properly distanced release dates on Saturdays in August, September and October.
The titles on the RSD 2020 Official List, launched on March 5, will be released at participating record stores on one of these three RSD Drops dates: August 29, September 26, and October 24. A new version of The List, including all three RSD Drops will be announced on June 1.
Record Store Day 2020--originally scheduled for April 18 and rescheduled for June 20 before the plan for three “socially distanced” RSD Drop dates came about--was bound to look and feel different from any of the previous twelve. Prior events have been as much about the gatherings, parties, concerts and “group hang” element of a celebration as the special releases, but in this unprecedented global situation, the focus of these RSD Drops dates is on bringing revenue to the stores, as well as to the artists, labels, distribution and every other business behind the scenes making record stores work.
The good news for customers and fans of record stores is that this financial relief comes in the form of exciting exclusive releases. Organizers are working with artists, labels and distribution companies to determine the new release schedule and make sure that each RSD Drop date has an exciting mix of artists and genres. A new version of “The List” will be launched June 1 on https://recordstoredaycanada.ca/ with newly assigned RSD Drop dates.
Record Store Day organizers have looked at numerous possible dates and various ways to re-work an event that takes place at thousands of record stores around the world, taking into consideration the varying circumstances any store or territory might find themselves in at any point this year. This current plan to spread the release of Record Store Day titles over several months was made with as much available information as possible, and gives the largest number of stores a chance to participate in the strangest Record Store Day ever, following their local mandates, and using the guidance of government and scientific experts to make these RSD Drop dates socially responsible as possible.
RSD Black Friday is still being planned and is scheduled to take place on November 27. Fingers crossed for the return of the biggest party of the year on the third Saturday of April 2021.
Record Store Day was conceived in 2007 at a gathering of independent record store owners and employees as a way to celebrate and spread the word about the unique culture surrounding nearly 1400 independently owned record stores in the US and thousands of similar stores internationally. The first Record Store Day took place on April 19, 2008. Today there are Record Store Day participating stores on every continent except Antarctica.
This is a day for the people who make up the world of the record store—the staff, the customers, and the artists—to come together and celebrate the unique culture of a record store and the special role these independently owned stores play in their communities. Special vinyl and CD releases and various promotional products are made exclusively for the day. Festivities include performances, cook-outs, body painting, meet & greets with artists, parades, DJs spinning records, and on and on. In 2008 a small list of titles was released on Record Store Day and that list has grown to include artists and labels both large and small, in every genre and price point. For several years, 60% or more of the Record Store Day Official Release List came from independent labels and distributors. The list continues to include a wide range of artists, covering the diverse taste of record stores and their customers.
Check out the list