Vinyl records and turntables are certainly perplexing technology. Unlike the CD, which was entirely cast aside as soon as digital downloading became a thing, records have always possessed an essence of ‘coolness’ around them. Maybe it is something to do with the quality of analog sound, or the album cover art which is bigger than your face, or maybe it is the retro romance of it all (especially if, like me, you were born in the 90s). But vinyl records are still intrinsically hip, and I have a sneaky suspicion they will far surpass the fad that is the resurgence of the cassette tape.
Inspired by the US’s “Record Store Day,” CAPIF (Cámara Argentina de Productores de Fonogramas y Videogramas) has set up the 10th edition of la Noche de las Disquerías on Thursday, November 8th that celebrates record stores and the extensive treasure troves that they contain. The evening celebrates music in all its glory, and the organizers offer special in-store discounts and live shows from the likes of Nito Mestre and Marcela Morelo.
In the last ten years, more than 400 artists have performed live, and 50 record companies are involved all over the city. Staggeringly, in 2017 more than 40,000 different people embarked on the music equivalent of a “pub crawl” from shop to record, shop hunting down the deals and connecting with fellow melómanas. Record store sales are so high that more often than not, they surpass those made around Christmas.
For extra excitement to commemorate the decade of music appreciation, this year, for the first time, the movement is not just restricted to the hubbub of Capital Federal, as “La Noche” will also hit La Plata, Rosario, Santa Fe, Paraná, and Córdoba. This means that up and down the country, artists will be performing live shows, giving the opportunity to Argentine citizens to come face-to-face with their music icons, and then buy their records as a tangible souvenir. Unlike other concerts and opportunities to meet the artists, entrance to the gigs and stores are completely free and available for any music fanatic.
Get ready to spend your hard-earned pesos in finding your perfect record, as it is time to appreciate this classic technology and the people behind them in the industry. In the words of Fat Mike from punk band NOFX: “If it wasn’t for independent record stores, I would be a San Fernando Valley real estate agent.” What a worrying thought.