Record Store Day 2013 may have been the biggest ever

I took home a lot of singles on Record Store Day including Public Image LTD, The Stooges/The Black Keys, The Hold Steady, Pretty & Nice, PUJOL, The Thermals, O+S, Black Lips/Icky Blossoms and Free Energy.

Happy Record Store Day!

It’s like Christmas. Except instead of getting presents, we pay lots of money for records. In fact, it’s not much like Christmas at all. It’s more like the day after Thanksgiving when people line up outside stores and rush in to get the best stuff.

This morning, all three participating stores in Omaha — Homer’s Music, Drastic Plastic and Saddle Creek Shop — had lines outside. With a couple hundred in line, Homer’s definitely had the biggest crowd.

They also had coffee, doughnuts and an acoustic performance by eclectic Boston rock band Pretty & Nice.

Boston rock band Pretty & Nice played an acoustic set for the waiting crowd outside of Homer’s Music.

The band, which has a new album out on April 30, played four songs in the cold. With a small setup — two acoustic guitars, a tambourine and a bass — the band did “New Czar” and “The Frog” from “Golden Rules for Golden People” and “Dan’s Heart” from “Us You All We.” They also did an awesome cover of “That Thing You Do” from the movie from the same name.

“We’re not normally a cover band,” said singer Jeremy Mendicino. Later, he told me they worked up the cover for their short stint of tour dates with Jukebox the Ghost.

People seemed to dig the band as they waited in line, and the crowds weren’t let inside for almost another hour. The band had to warm its fingers between songs because the cold temps were making them stiff.

When the doors to Homer’s opened, the store was flooded with people.

Homer’s Music was full of Record Store Day customers looking to snatch up some vinyl.

Added to the hundreds of people in line were even more who arrived right at 10 a.m. It was crushing. The most exclusive stuff was grabbed immediately. The man who had the front spot in line (he and his friend arrived at 6 a.m., two hours before the store’s workers) told me he got everything he was looking for including the only copy of the very, very limited Dave Matthews Band, “Live Trax Vol. 1.”

I didn’t even go over to the 12-inch section. It was crushed with people and some waited for at least 20 minutes just to get over to the bin. I flipped through the 10-inches, found nothing I wanted and then grabbed some 7-inches.

Across the street at Drastic Plastic, about 20 or so people were lined up by 10 a.m. Drastic didn’t have quite the selection, but they did have a steady stream of customers. Drastic’s Neil Azevedo told me that one of the store’s shipments hadn’t arrived and they’d have more product available on Monday or Tuesday.

Down at Saddle Creek Shop, the selection was pretty picked over by the time I arrived. They had all of the Saddle Creek Records releases (and priced way cheaper than other stores) as well as several other items. When the store opened, the shop had a line down  the sidewalk all the way to Film Streams.

“I don’t know if it’s a testament to people knowing where we are now or to the popularity of Record Store Day,” said the shop’s Nate Welker.

All in all, it’s the most popular Record Store Day that I’ve ever seen. Even in the past, I’ve been able to get into the stores without much trouble and find a lot of what I was looking for. This year, I got a lot of items, but missed out on several that I was excited about.

My favorite so far is The Hold Steady’s single of “The Bear and the Maiden Fair,” which is a song from “Game of Thrones.” I also picked up all four of Saddle Creek’s releases, the Stooges/Black Keys split, a Free Energy single and a few others. I even grabbed Pretty & Nice’s RSD release, which the band had signed several copies of.

I guess next year I’m going to get in line at 7 a.m. Will it help? We shall see.



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