Today is National Record Store Day and to do my part as a citizen of Vinyl Nation, I went to the new Origami Records shop on Sunset in Echo Park (right next to Two Boots Pizza and the Echo) and bought my first, in years, new –as in not-used– vinyl record: The Greatest by Cat Power.
Kicked off last year in San Francisco and now officially observed the third Saturday of every April, several other Los Angeles record stores are participating in this year’s National Record Store Day, including my favorites Freakbeat in Sherman Oaks, Rockaway in Silver Lake and, of course, Amoeba. Over 700 indie record stores nationwide, and some international ones too, are participating. Special performances, limited edition releases on LP and CD and carnival-esque events are a part of the mix too. Think of it as the anti-Coachella (although they have a presence there too.) A complete list of participating stores and additional info are on their site.
How I joined the Church of Chan after the click-click, pop, hiss…
Regarding Cat Power, I’m a latecomer to the Chan Marshall fold. In the past, I always found her a little too much of a needy-girl whiner. I like my women of rock to be more in the mold of Patti Smith, Debbie Harry, Chrissie Hynde — that is, until I heard Jukebox when it was released at the beginning of last year. It has since been a constant on my life soundtrack, something that I listen to in its entirety, not a-song-here-a-song-there like kids these days like to do thanks to Apple’s dim sum approach to consuming music. I want the whole damned meal and I even saved room for dessert (extra-tracks EPs and special editions.) That’s the beauty of LP vinyl, a format that demands, and rewards, more than a one-song attention span.
Chan Marshall had a fleeting role in the last year’s movie Blueberry Nights (Norah Jones had the lead) and she looked just like she sounds in her songs– beautifully ravaged and wearily wise. She’s the only thing I remember about the movie, in fact.