If you think that this weekend’s Record Store Day Drop feels like a dribble, you’re not completely wrong. The June 18 event is an adjunct to the big collectors’ kahuna that happened back in April, with just under 80 exclusive vinyl titles being released for this bonus RSD, versus the roughly 400 shoppers got in mid-spring. The follow-up day is for releases that, mostly because of supply-chain issues, weren’t able to be shipped in time for the big day two months ago.
And the irony (or maybe just wry reality)? This weekend’s list a little shorter than originally announced, just because a handful of titles had to be bumped yet again, to the annual RSD Black Friday event the day after Thanksgiving. Patience, then — in a post-pandemic, pressing-plant-challenged world, all good Johnny Thunders albums come to those who wait.
But what this born-out-of-necessity RSD Drop deliberately lacks in quantity, it will make up for in quality, at least for buyers with very specific wants. Probably the three most coveted titles showing up in independent stores this weekend are a trio of Sony Legacy releases, from Prince, Pearl Jam and Miles Davis. All three are being manufactured in fairly hefty quantities, so there’s a good chance of picking them up Saturday evening or even Sunday, although everyone’s mileage at their local brick-and-mortar outlets will vary, of course.
Also on the agenda are reissues or fresh releases from Wilco, the Who, Nicki Minaj, Ray Charles, Fats Domino, Paul McCartney, Kali Uchis, Supergrass, Dio, John Williams, My Morning Jacket, Linda Martell, the Kinks, Peter Gabriel, Ralph Stanley, Slash, Tangerine Dream, the Jerry Garcia Band, Voivod, Brian Tyler and a few dozen more. (For more extensive details on all the titles, and a list of participating stores, click here.)
And of course there will be other items to search out once RSD has you in the door — like, also new this weekend, the Beach Boys’ brand new six-LP box set “The Very Best of the Beach Boys,” not directly related to Record Store Day but destined to go in the same bag for a lot of folks.
Ten RSD Drop highlights to look for:
Pearl Jam, “Live on Two Legs” (20,600 copies)
Pearl Jam releases are always pressed in such massive quantities for RSD that you think surely they will stick around in stores for a while … and yet the chance to pick one up always ends up receding quickly in one’s rearview mirror. This double live album did get a limited vinyl release back in ’98, the year of the tour it documented, but copies now go for $300-400. The price is now right, as is the clear vinyl pressing of the two LPs. Come for then-recent favorites like “Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town,” “Daughter” and “Better Man,” stay for the Neil-saluting “Fuckin’ Up” encore.
Prince, “The Gold Experience” (24,150 copies)
Original copies of this particular item had been going for $700-800, so, sorry to collectors who will suddenly see those seriously devalued. But now another 25,000 or so fans will get a fairly exact duplication of a promo edition of Prince’s album that went out in 1995 on gold double-vinyl. It replicates the original down to having the packaging for the two LPs consist of a single plain brown sleeve with stickers affixed to the front and back (the latter being a very long sticker reprinting a St. Paul Pioneer Press essay on Prince from that year). The second disc includes a whole side’s worth of “Hate U” remixes, perfect for gifting to the most beautiful girl in the world in your life.
Miles Davis, “What It Is: Montreal 7/7/83” (10,000 copies)
Davis’ camp has another substantial CD boxed set on the way, “The Bootleg Series Volume 7,” representing his sometimes polarizing ’80s work. But they’re previewing it with a big vinyl appetizer — and for vinyl-favoring fans, this may actually be the main course — by pulling out a 1983 show in Montreal for a singular two-LP release. The band, which included John Scofield, Bill Evans (the sax-playing Bill Evans), Darryl Jones, Al Foster and Mino Cinelu, was captured at the Theatre St. Denis in Montreal, Canada. A couple of tracks were included on his 1984 album “Decoy,” albeit in edited form, but the rest are premiering here. One reason not to wait for this to appear in the eventual CD set: one of the inner sleeves includes a lengthy essay by the late, great writer Gregory Tate, who completed the album notes not long before he died.
Wilco, “Cruel Country Pre-Release Limited Edition” (8,000 copies)
When Wilco’s excellent “Cruel Country” came out as a 21-track album some weeks back, there were some lamentations in Wilco-world that no physical edition existed at all, with either a CD or LP version said to be months away. However, a bargain has been struck, in that the band is putting out a CD version with the plainest, most bare-boned packaging for RSD as a “pre-release limited edition.” Now, 8,000 copies would be a lot for a finished edition to sell through these days, given the diminishing popularity of CDs versus vinyl. But if deserve’s got anything to do with it, these will be gone and the band can get on with pressing a proper release that will do well, too.
Linda Hoover, “I Mean to Shine” (2,000 copies)
Here’s the kind of oddball discovery that keeps RSD fun for those who aren’t so much into repackagings. It’s a shelved album that includes a copious amount of never-before-heard songs by Donald Fagen and Walter Becker, written just before they first hit the streets as Steely Dan, production by future Dan helmer Gary Katz, and players like Denny Dias and Jeff “Skunk” Baxter. Fans of Fagen and Becker will of course recognize the title track as something that was also recorded by Barbra Streisand, which helped steal the thunder from Hoover’s own debut album coming out. Fifty-plus years later after the album release and effectively Hoover’s entire music career were set aside, any major dude will tell you that this is a must-add to Dan-heads’ collections.
My Morning Jacket, “Live From RCA Studio A (Jim James Acoustic)” (5,000 copies)
Many RSD releases are labeled as “RSD First” items, meaning they may be available later at all retailers, or repressed. This live album from Jim James is branded as an “RSD Exclusive,” however, so it’s not likely to suddenly reemerge after this edition sells out. James went into the most famous studio in Nashville to recut seven of the songs from My Morning Jacket’s self-titled album, as a solo artist.
The Who, “It’s Hard (40th Anniversary)” (6,000 copies)
Who albums from the late ’70s and early ’80s have been making their way onto RSD vinyl limited editions with bonus material. For its 40th anniversary, “It’s Hard” joins their company. There’s a half-speed remaster of the original album, but the biggest draw for fans in this two-LP set (pressed on orange and yellows slabs) may be a fourth side that includes four unreleased or rare tracks, including an “Eminence Front” that had Roger Daltrey trying out the lead vocal before Pete Townshend decided that one was his, and, conversely, a “One LIfe’s Enough” that has Pete singing instead of Rog.
Linda Martell, “Color Me Country” (2,000 copies)
Martell’s name has been brought up a lot in country circles over the past couple of years, as the extreme racial disparities in the genre have been highlighted and Martell brought up as the only Black woman to have any significant success in the format in the 20th century, or before Mickey Guyton, really — and even then, she barely cracked the limelight before disappearing. This debut album was also a swan song album, sadly, but, with its inclusion of her minor hit “Color Him Father” and 10 other tracks, it’s a chance to catch up on what could have been, 50 years ago, if the gatekeepers had been any more open then than they are today.
Various Artists, “50 Years of TV’s Greatest Hits” (2,500 copies)
Normally, having roughly 60 tracks spread across two LPs would be a mastering and probably listening nightmare, but as the title would indicate, it’s one quickie after another in this collection. Classic themes from “Star Trek,” “Alfred Hitchcock Presents” and “Peter Gunn” are represented; so are relatively modern ones for “Kids in the Hall,” “Sex and the City” and “Dexter.” Appropriate for such a sprawling, scattershot set, it’s on splatter vinyl.
Various Artists, “The Royal Tenenbaums (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)” (unspecified quantity)
Soundtracks always draw a cult-within-a-cult to RSD events. Much requested, long delayed and never previously available on vinyl, the score for Wes Anderson’s film includes Mark Mothersbaugh’s score and an eclectic song selection that includes Bob Dylan, the Ramones, Nick Drake, the Velvet Underground, the Clash, Emitt Rhodes, Elliott Smith and two Nico tunes. Its two LPs are pressed on sky (not royal) blue and olive green vinyl and come in a die-cut, gatefold jacket.
The complete list of available RSD Drop 2022 titles:
The Album Leaf Past and Future Tense Nettwerk 2xLP
Be Bop Deluxe Live In The Air Age Esoteric 3xLP
Billy Bragg Life’s A Riot With Spy vs Spy (30th Anniversary Edition) Cooking Vinyl
The Brand New Heavies Heavy Rhyme Experience: Vol. 1 [30th Anniversary] Craft Recordings LP
The Paul Butterfield Blues Band The Original Lost Elektra Sessions (Expanded) Run Out Groove 3xLP
Ray Charles Genius Loves Company Tangerine 2xLP
Collective Soul Disciplined Breakdown Craft Recordings LP
Creedence Clearwater Revival Travelin’ Band (Live At Royal Albert Hall, 1970) Craft Recordings 7″
Daughtry Dearly Beloved Dog Tree Records 2xLP
Miles Davis What It Is: Montreal 7/7/83 Legacy 2xLP
Dio Double Dose of Donington BMG 12″ Single
Fats Domino Here Comes… Fats Domino Reel LP
Sam Fender Alright/The Kitchen (Live) Interscope 7″
Field Music Plumb Memphis Industries LP
Flash & The Dynamics The New York Sound Craft Recordings LP
Richie Furay In The Country BMG Rights Management (US) LLC LP
G.B.H. City Baby Attacked By Rats BMG LP
Peter Gabriel Live Blood Real World 3xLP
Jerry Garcia Band Ragged But Right Round 2xLP
Billy F Gibbons Hardware [Deluxe Edition] Concord CD Box
The Go! Team Proof of Youth Memphis Industries LP
Parry Gripp For Kids About To Rock Oglio LP
Steve Hackett The Tokyo Tapes Esoteric Antenna 3xLP
Halestorm Back From The Dead Atlantic LP
Bobby Hamilton Quintet Unlimited Dream Queen Now-Again Records LP
Home Boy and the C.O.L. Home Boy And The C.O.L. Tidal Waves Music LP
Linda Hoover I Need To Shine Omnivore Recordings LP
Freddie Hubbard Live At Studio 104 Maison de la Radio, (ORTF), Paris 1973 WeWantSounds 2xLP
Hasaan Ibn Ali Retrospect In Retirement Of Delay: The Solo Recordings Omnivore Recordings 4xLP
Jetstar Records The Soul Sides Jetstar Records LP
Otto Kentrol No Mistakes Modern Harmonic 2xLP
Calvin Keys Full Court Press Tidal Waves Music LP
The Kinks Waterloo Sunset EP BMG 12″ EP
Madness Baggy Trousers BMG 12″ EP
Esther Marrow Sister Woman Craft Recordings LP
Linda Martell Color Me Country ORG Music LP
Paul McCartney/St. Vincent “Women and Wives” Capitol 12″
Nicki Minaj Beam Me Up Scotty Republic 2xLP
My Morning Jacket Live From RCA Studio A (Jim James Acoustic) ATO Records LP
Night Beats Live at Valentine Cooking Vinyl
Pearl Jam Live on Two Legs Legacy 2xLP
Prince The Gold Experience Legacy 2xLP
The Rationals The Rationals Prudential Music Group LP
The Residents Warning: Uninc – Live And Experimental Recordings 1971-1972 New Ralph 2xLP
Keith Richards Talk is Cheap / Live At The Hollywood Palladium BMG 2xCassette
Slash Live At Studio 60 BMG 2xLP
Ralph Stanley & The Clinch Mountain Boys The Bluegrass Sound Reel LP
Sun’s Signature Sun’s Signature Partisan Records 12″ EP
Super Furry Animals (Brawd Bach) – Rings Around the World BMG LP
Supergrass Moving Echo 12″ EP
Surfbort Keep On Truckin’ Inner Freak Records LP
The Sweet Platinum Rare VOL 2 Prudential Music Group 2xLP
Tangerine Dream Alpha Centauri Esoteric 2xLP
Tangerine Dream Live At Reims Cinema Opera (September 23rd, 1975) LMLR 2xLP
Brian Tyler The Fast And The Furious: Tokyo Drift (Original Score) Varese Sarabande 2xLP
Kali Uchis Sin Miedo (Del Amor y Otros Demonios) Interscope LP
Various Artists Big Night (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) Varese Sarabande LP
Various Artists You Can’t Sit Down: Cameo Parkway Dance Crazes 1958-1964 (U.K. Collection) ABKCO 2xLP
Various Artists You Got The Power: Cameo Parkway Northern Soul 1964-1967 (U.K. Collection) ABKCO 2xLP
Various Artists Greensleeves Ganja Anthems VP Records LP
Various Artists Love Is All I Bring Trojan Records 2xLP
Various Artists Go Ahead Punk…Make My Day Craft Recordings LP
Various Artists Song Confessional Vol 1 Good Taste Society LP
Soul Jazz Records Presents 100% DYNAMITE! Ska, Soul, Rocksteady & Funk in Jamaica Soul Jazz Records 2xLP
Soul Jazz Records Presents STUDIO ONE CLASSICS Soul Jazz Records 2xLP
Various Artists Sweet Relief – A Benefit for Victoria Williams Legacy 2xLP
Various Artists The Royal Tenenbaums (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) Hollywood 2xLP
Various Artists 50 Years of TV’s Greatest Hits LMLR (French Import) 2xLP
Viktor Vaughn Vaudeville Villain Get On Down 2xLP
Virgin Prunes Pagan Lovesong (40th Anniversary Edition) BMG 12″ Single
Voivod Nothingface Real Gone Music LP
Wailing Souls Firehouse Rock Deluxe VP Records 2xLP
Warrior Soul Odds & Ends Prudential Music Group LP
Mike Watt + Larry Mullins Fun House ORG Music 7″ Vinyl
Gerard Way Hesitant Alien Reprise LP
Barry White No Limit On Love Reel LP
The Who It’s Hard (40th Anniversary) Polydor 2xLP
Wilco Cruel Country Pre-Release Limited Edition dBpm 2xCD
John Williams Lost In Space: Title Themes from the Hit TV Series Spacelab9 LP
World Party Seaview Records Presents: World Party – Curated By RSD Seaview LP
Young-Holt Unlimited Young-Holt Unlimited Plays Superfly Liberation Hall LP