Music can be a passion, a hobby, a past-time, even a job. But mostly, music is a business. A few days ago the final listings for this year's Record Store Day, known as RSD, was announced.
For those who don't know, the RSD takes place every year in April and celebrates independent record stores all over the world with exclusive releases.
This year's ambassador is David Grohl. The guy who was in Nirvana and now is the sole tenant of every stadium with Foo Fighters. Yes the truth be told, David doesn't really embody the small record shop around the corner, right? I mean, why not pick someone like Dean Wareham, Ryan Jarman, Kim Deal or even Mac Demarco as ambassadors? At least these artists would mean something to the indie nerd waiting outside his favourite record shop at 5 in the morning. But David Grohl is a wise and safe choice and that's's where the problems with RSD begin.
RSD cannot and should not be a celebration of the past. At least I find these re-mastered re-issued records of the past boring and unappealing, anyway. An umpteenth David Bowie record, another Noel Gallagher 12"; do people still buy James records any more? Manic Street Preachers, really?
The problem is that RSD has lost it's independent purpose in order to become a major label commercial event. The average band which will play a semi acoustic gig in front of a hipster's coffee shop cannot make RSD that indie and alternative event it was supposed to be simply because they most likely won't even have a RSD record to release.
A very small amount of the releases are from new bands. Amongst them this year are Honeyblood, Hinds, Spectres, Lorelle Meets The Obsolete and Courtney Barnett.
The list is a small one. For up and coming band Spectres, which is supposed to release a split with Lorelle Meets The Obsolete, the labels have decided to release one record a day over a year, so 365 records in total. Read Sonic Cathedral's statement about the RSD.
So to the point. RSD will never really be if people keep on re-pressing the old vinyl which aren't necessarily sought after in order to celebrate an event which should be championing new music. Shouldn't the old and established put aside their dominance for one day, because they certainly aren't bringing anything new to the table nor is their presence on the list particularly relevant in terms of 'future music'.
It may be the ramblings of a sincere music fan, but I just want to give the new guys a chance and so should the organisers of RSD...after all that's what it was established for. I love David Bowie. Same goes for Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Genesis or Deep Purple. It's not that people shouldn't care, it's that people should care about something else this RSD.