On April 19th 2008 Metallica kicked off the first ever Record Store Day with a concert at Rasputin Records in San Francisco, CA. A "holiday" of sorts dedicated to celebrating and supporting independently own record stores across the US and the unique culture and scene that surround them. "This is the one day that all of the independently owned record stores come together with artists to celebrate the art of music."
The "About Us" on the official RSD website reads almost like a manifesto, promising promotional releases, merchandise, artists appearances and special concerts. Over the past few year Record Store Day has grown into an international sensation, reaching not just across the US but over the ocean to Europe as well.
This coming Saturday, April 17th marks the third institution of the holiday (celebrated annually on the third Saturday of April), and proves to be bigger than ever. The greatest number of special releases-from MGMT to Tom Waits-will be available in the US, while artists like Blur will be releasing a brand new track, only available in the UK. The Smashing Pumpkins will be launching their new album with an intimate concert in LA (just a few blocks from Amoeba Records), while The Pains of Being Pure at Heart will be performing at NY's own Other Music. So check the participating record stores in your area and figure out how you can celebrate this year!