Norfolk music lovers to mark 10 years of Record Store Day

Danielle Welham-Smith at Lewks record shop in Downham Market, is preparing for the 10th Record Store

Danielle Welham-Smith at Lewks record shop in Downham Market, is preparing for the 10th Record Store Day at the weekend. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

Fans will queues from dawn to get their hands on hundreds of rare releases on anniversary of event credited with helping independent shops and reviving forunes of vinyl records.

Lawrence Welham and daughter Danielle Welham-Smith at Lewks record shop in Downham Market, are prepa

Lawrence Welham and daughter Danielle Welham-Smith at Lewks record shop in Downham Market, are preparing for the 10th Record Store Day at the weekend. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

It's not often you see queues outside record shops these days but tomorrow thousands will be up at the crack of dawn to get their hands on limited editions from their favourite acts.

Record Store Day, the annual celebration of indie record stores, is this year marking its 10th anniversary on April 22 and there are more than 400 special releases up for grabs.

Since launching in the UK in 2007, it has become a hugely anticipated date for music lovers and has been credited with helping to revive the fortunes of both independent music shops and sales of vinyl albums.

Participating stores in and around Norfolk include Soundclash in Norwich, Holt Vinyl Vault, Lewks in Downham Market and Vinyl Hunter in Bury St Edmunds.

Paul Mills, owner of Soundclash in St Benedict's Street, prepares for the annual Record Store Day wi

Paul Mills, owner of Soundclash in St Benedict's Street, prepares for the annual Record Store Day with some of the album releases. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: Archant

Turning up from the crack of dawn buyers will be desperate to get their hands on rare releases such as live album Cracked Actor by David Bowie, reissues of seven classic Prince singles and a live recording of Bruce Springsteen's first ever British gig at the Hammersmith Odeon in 1975.

Other releases include a previously unheard version of The Smiths' Boy With The Thorn In His Side, a box set of The Ramones first 10 singles, a completely new version of Fleetwood Mac's Alternate Mirage and a Pink Floyd near 15-minute single not heard since 1966.

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But the day is about than just collecting with special events and live performances.

At Lewks in Downham Market, which opened in 1973 making it one of longest established independent music retailers in East Anglia, previous years has seen the queue form at midnight to be first in the doors at 8.30am. This year they are hosting live music from When Rivers Meet at 8am and Dick York & The Originals at 9am.

Queues of music fans eager to get their hands on rare releases will gather from dawn outside Soundcl

Queues of music fans eager to get their hands on rare releases will gather from dawn outside Soundclash in St Benedict's Street, Norwich. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: Archant

The Vinyl Vault in Holt will mark the end of the day with a DJ set by Postmaster Flash of the music of Prince from 10pm.

The day is also a social event says Paul Mills, owner of Soundclash: 'Every year it's an amazing day, there's a great atmosphere that develops in the queue – friendships are forged and loads of really special records are taken home by very happy music lovers.'

Amongst Paul's must-buys this year are Without You I Am Nothing by Placebo featuring David Bowie, Solid Gold Punk Bangers by The Slaves, Young, Dumb and Full of ... by Cabbage and God Save Sex Pistols, the first configuration of the band's seminal Never Mind The Bollocks album, with slightly different versions of key tracks and completely different artwork.

All are on vinyl which is enjoying an unlikely revival amongst young music buyers who are increasingly preferring the physical format over digital downloads.

Will Hunter and manager Ross Alderdice at The Vinyl Hunter shop as part of last year's Record Store

Will Hunter and manager Ross Alderdice at The Vinyl Hunter shop as part of last year's Record Store Day. Picture: Gregg Brown - Credit: Gregg Brown

'In the last few years there have been more and more young people getting into vinyl and building up record collections alongside their downloaded music collections, they appreciate how much better music that they love sounds when it's played on a record player.'

Record Store Day has been a catalyst behind the unlikely vinyl revival. In 2007 there were just over 75,000 vinyl albums sold in the UK. A decade on sales reached 3.4 million last year, representing 14% of the physical albums market.

The annual event has also been a factor in the turnaround in fortunes for independent shops. There are now over 380 independent record shops in the UK, over a third of which have opened their doors in the past decade.

In order to maintain their position on the high street, many are diversifying and combining music with different lines of product including cafes, books, merchandise, events and clothing.

The Vinyl Hunter in Bury St Edmunds is one of a new generation of record shops that are thriving by

The Vinyl Hunter in Bury St Edmunds is one of a new generation of record shops that are thriving by mixing selling vinyl records with things like coffee. Picture: Gregg Brown - Credit: Gregg Brown

William Hunter, aged only 19, opened Vinyl Hunter in 2015 which combines coffee and vinyl in Bury St Edmunds.

He said: 'A shop and interaction between people is hard to replicate online and we believe the future of record stores is to create a social environment for people to meet and share their love of music and vinyl.

We love meeting the collectors from new vinyl buyers to collectors of days gone by who are dusting down their vinyl collection and coming to us for a turntable to play them on and to explore new genres.'

• Visit www.recordstoreday.co.uk for a full list of releases and shops.

Needle on the record — vinyl revival in numbers

3.2 — Vinyl records (million) sold in UK in 2016, up 53%

2.6 — % vinyl sales account for in the overall music market

54K — Bowie's Blackstar sold, 2016 the biggest vinyl seller

17 — Record pressing plants left in the country

400 — Exclusive Record Store Day discs on sale this Saturday

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