April 14, 2009

Customer: Hi, do you have the song “I Just Called To Say I Love You?” It’s for my daughter’s birthday.
Barry (Jack Black): Yea we have it.
Customer: Great, Great, can I have it?
Barry: No, no, you can’t.
Customer: Why not?
Barry: Well, it’s sentimental tacky crap. Do we look like the kind of store that sells “I Just Called to Say I Love You?” Go to the mall.
(High Fidelity – 2000)

Remember when you used to plan your week around a visit to the local record store? Most music fans had a regular routine of saving some cash and heading down to a local shop to sift through dozens of bins of albums (and later CDs). You might have had six or seven artists you wanted to check out that day, but inevitably the record store guy would throw on some new vinyl that would blow your mind. And you would just have to have it. Most of us didn’t make a lot of money in those days (not unlike today!), but I’m sure every available dime I had was used for new music. To the guys at Electric Fetus in St. Cloud, I might have been just another regular back for a weekly fix. But they knew what I liked – early Clash, rare U2 singles and anything by The Replacements, R.E.M. and Trip Shakespeare. But it wasn’t until High Fidelity came out that I realized what an easy target I was. You might recall the following scene with John Cusack:

Rob (John Cusack): I will now sell five copies of “The Three EPs” by The Beta Band.
Dick: Go for it.
[Rob plays the record]
Customer: Who is this?
Rob: The Beta Band.
Customer: It’s good.
Rob: I know.

I’ve been that customer hundreds of times in my life.

So why the nostalgia trip? Saturday is National Record Store Day, and it’s a day we shouldn’t let pass without recognition. Most music casual listeners have rarely set foot in a local record store. They do all their music buying online (and we’re all guilty of this). But the opportunity to discover the next Beta Band while rhythmically clicking through a bin of Jesus and Mary Chain CDs might be passing us by. In the Twin Cities alone we have lost some incredible shops in the last couple of years – Northern Lights on Hennepin, Let It Be on Nicollet and Oar Folkjokeopus on Lyndale, to name a few. So yeah, were a bit nostalgia today. But it’s all about the music, right?

We hope you can join us today for Great River Radio. We’ll try to fill that music discovery role this afternoon when we play some new tunes by Conor Oberst, the Honeydogs, Jessica Lea Mayfield, Bat for Lashes, Andrew Bird and the Doves. We’ll also use the “Way Back” machine and hear from Llloyd Cole, Aztec Camera, Warren Zevon and the Del Lords. Sounds fun, huh?

You Shook Me-Muddy Waters
Sabali-Amadou and Mariam
Kiss Me Again-Jessica Lee Mayfield
How The Day Sounds-Greg Laswell
Daniel-Bat For Lashes
Now We Can See-The Thermals
Fiber Optic Paramour-Honeydogs
Nicorette-Conor Oberst
The Sharpest Thorn-Elvis Costello and Allen Toussaint
Tipitina and Me-Allen Toussaint
Rules of Travel-Rosanne Cash
Pink Moon-Beck
Irish Blood, English Heart-Morissey
The Night Starts Here-Stars
Desperados Under the Eaves-Warren Zevon
The Art Teadher-Rufus Wainwright
A Nervous Tic Motion of the Head to the Left-Andrew Bird
Are You Ready to Be Heartbroken?-Lloyd Cole and The Commotions
Oblivious-Aztec Camera
Sugarfoot-Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears
Kingdom of Rust-Doves
What’s So Funny About Peace Love and Understanding?-Nick Lowe
Hard Times-Gob Iron
How Can A Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live-The Del Lords
Best of You-Stereophonics
I Feel A Change Comin’ On-Bob Dylan


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