Tomorrow brings us once again to Record Store Day, the seventh annual celebration of record shop culture and local music. In the years since its founding, RSD has become a full-fledged movement, providing year-round contests, prizes, and promotions to affirm a way of life that continues to be threatened with extinction.
This Saturday, record shops across Houston will take part in the fun with live music, DJs, free beer, special releases, and sale prices all day. Here’s a rundown of Houston’s record shops, and a preview of what they’ll be up to this Saturday:
cactusmusictx.com • 2110 Portsmouth St.• 713-526-9272
Cactus Music is a hub of Houston’s music scene, featuring a broad selection of records catering to most interests. Their environment is welcoming, and they regularly offer free shows, free beer, and special events.
Cactus kicks off RSD with three DJ sessions: from 10 a.m. to noon, Wally Farkas will be spinning 45s on classic record players, followed by Clint Broussard until 3 p.m., then Bagheera, who will be giving away 100 of his RSD 7”s. There will be free Saint Arnold beer and Katz’s Coffee during the day, and giveaways include many autographed posters and a guitar signed by Robert Ellis.
heightsvinyl.com • 3122 White Oak Dr. • 281-974-1234
The staff at Heights Vinyl is very friendly and knowledgeable—they clearly love what they do, and they're happy to help with purchasing decisions, even when you’re not buying from them. In addition to selling and repairing vintage equipment, their music selection includes lots of weird old rock, punk, hardcore, and experimental records.
This Saturday, Heights Vinyl will be serving up Karbach beer, along with generous helpings of live music: Journey Agents at 1 p.m., Bury the Crown at 2:30 p.m., Shotgun Funeral at 4 p.m., and a special debut performance by Tightn’ Up at 5:30 p.m.
sigslagoon.com • 3622 Main St. • 713-533-9525
Sig’s Lagoon is a tiki-themed hole-in-the-wall record shop sandwiched between Double Trouble Coffee & Cocktails. Unsurprisingly, they carry a selection of music that matches the retro, divey aesthetic of the lower Midtown block around them.
vinaledge.com • 239 W. 19th St. • 832-618-1129
With whole bins of undiscovered gems, Vinal Edge (sic) is a music nerd’s paradise. Their selection ranges from the weird—an album of Timothy Leary’s LSD talks, a section of soundscapes, and whale sounds—to more traditional genres, like rap, house, rock, and punk. They also carry stereo equipment and new turntables.
Befitting its reputation as a serious record shop, Vinal Edge will spend Saturday focused on selling records. They’ve been setting aside lots of “real gems” for months, and on Saturday they’ll put these out for sale alongside a buy-one-get-one-free deal on CDs.
Black Dog Records
blackdogrecordstx.com • 4900 Bissonnet St. #102 • 713-522-6001
Black Dog Records in Bellaire is named for the owner’s dog (R.I.P.) and carries lots of interesting rock rarities and imports. If your vinyl wishlist has a few hard-to-find albums on it, Black Dog is definitely worth the trip.
Like Vinal Edge, Black Dog’s focus this Saturday is on the records. This year they’re featuring a customer appreciation sale, in which records and box sets will be marked down by 50 percent. They’ll be posting specific deals on their Facebook page leading up to the event.
soundexchangehouston.com • 1846 Richmond Ave. • 713-666-5555
Sound Exchange is located in an old house in Montrose full of turntables, equipment, and bins of records. These guys are purists, and they have the old-school website (complete with a rant against Tower Records!) to prove it.
This Saturday, Sound Exchange is inviting some of their regular customers with huge record collections to guest DJ alongside some well-known Houston personalities like DJ Rosa from KTRU’s punk show Mutant Hardcore Flower Hour, DJ Flash Gordon Parks, and DJ Sun.
What are you up to on Record Store Day? If we missed something, let us know in the comments!