Record Store Day Roundup: 2024 Edition

CD, Record Store

Another Record Store Day has come and gone. Did you snag that coveted pressing of that album you had your eye on? Hopefully your experience was as good as mine was, and you were able to grab at least something on your list either in-person or online afterwards. In this article, I’ll be recapping things I noticed about the most popular titles going first, providing feedback on the pressing numbers for this year’s collection, and ways to keep vinyl fans engaged with their local record stores throughout the year.

Most Popular Titles

Across the board, it seemed that the fastest title to leave the record store shelves were the ultra-coveted 7 inch split between Olivia Rodrigo/Noah Kahan for “Stick Season/Lucy.” The single was pressed on a colored vinyl, and was limited to 15,000 copies. If you weren’t able to snag this title, the good news is that it’s labeled as “RSD First” title, meaning that it plans to get a future pressing.

Another title that was unique and in very limited quantities was a cool looking mini record player plus 3″ singles from a little band known as The Beatles. This Bluetooth-enabled mini turntable featured a Beatles-branded dust cover and was packaged with four mini singles of “She Loves You,” “I Want To Hold Your Hand,” “Til There Was You,” and “I Saw Her Standing There.” The cute set was limited to 2,300 units, and was partially responsible for the long lines during Record Store Day.

Another surprisingly coveted release was the ITEIAD Sessions by The Japanese House, which was limited to just 800 copies. This set featured alternate session versions of In The End It Always Does, including an alternative version of lead single, “Boyhood,” and a cover of ABBA’s “Super Trouper.” This “RSD First” title will get another pressing, but this 6-track EP pressed on white vinyl was a hot item on the secondary market.

The last “hot item” that I was lucky enough to get my hands on was the long out of print sophomore album by At The Drive-In called In/Casino/Out. This Craft Recordings “RSD First” exclusive was limited to 3,500 copies, and was a fast mover at record stores across the country. It was pressed on a cool, Purple/Green Smoke LP, and it sounds pretty damn dynamic to my ears on my turntable.

The Introduction of Discogs’ Record Store Day Afters

Another cool component of this year’s Record Store Day was the unveiling of an International Discogs database of RSD-exclusives from 13 countries. This is called the “Record Store Day Afters” website, and launches today at 3 PM (Eastern Time Zone) here.

Additionally, other stores across the U.S. released their Record Store Day stock on Discogs and their own websites, at retail cost, as early as the day after Record Store Day 2024. This greatly helped me, and thousands of other vinyl collectors, in obtaining those RSD exclusives without being scalped on Ebay and other secondary auction sites.

Recommendations for Improvements for Future Record Store Day Observances

While my experience was overwhelmingly positive, I have heard from others in the vinyl community that there is still room for improvement in the Record Store Day process. The lines are a tough situation to navigate, but I feel like our indie record stores are getting better at keeping the lines moving by having helpful staff determine which titles are gone throughout the day and assisting customers with finding their wanted titles in a timely fashion. Other suggestions would be to limit the “flip through” process of the RSD bins by having customers with their lists handy to ask if certain titles are in stock so they don’t hold up the lines searching for a title that isn’t there. Many great indie stores across the U.S. were up front and communicative about their RSD stock, and this transparency will help out customers in feeling a sense of community with their local shops.

The pressing numbers were fairly on point this year, with a few exceptions that I’ve already outlined. As long as Record Store Day continues to honor their “RSD First” titles with plans for future pressings, all fans should be able to eventually get their hands on their desired titles. The introduction of the Discogs international database also allows for fans to get their hands on titles exclusive to certain regions from brick and mortar shops that they may not have ever had an opportunity to interact with.

Add in the fact that a little artist known as Taylor Swift dropped a new album the day before Record Store Day ’24 to help drive traffic to local record stores, and everything clicked directly into place to get the hype to be at a fever pitch for this year’s observance. Taylor Swift even included an exclusive note “from the desk of Taylor Swift” to thank her fans for purchasing her new album at an indie record store. It was a nice touch from Taylor, whom didn’t have any exclusive RSD titles this year, to still make her presence felt during this year’s Record Store Day.

Record Store Day Countdown Posts

This past week, I also did deep dives into several key RSD titles, and you can check out those “Countdown” posts here.