LYNNWOOD — It’s the Black Friday of vinyl, only the annual rite is always on a Saturday.
People camp out on sidewalks to be ready to pounce when the doors open on Record Store Day.
Silver Platters stores in Seattle, Bellevue and Lynnwood are among the record shops participating in the annual worldwide event some call a holiday. Hundreds of new special release albums of all genres are up for grabs.
The Lynnwood store opens at 9 a.m., an hour earlier than usual.
People line up hours before. Some come the night before, said Steve Trett, manager of Silver Platters at Alderwood Village by the Lynnwood Convention Center.
“Essentially I tell them if anybody crowds or shoves I’ll throw your (he paused) out of the store,” Trett said. “Everybody has to be polite and nice and wait their turn.”
It’s a limit of one copy of each title per person. Most buy many titles.
“People spend a lot of money. Some over $1,000,” Trett said. “Mostly we sell out.”
Many albums are $20 to $25, he said.
“It’s almost all vinyl, either 7-inch, 10-inch, 12-inch. Most are 12-inch,” Trett said. “There are a few CDs, cassettes.”
Record Store Day started in 2008 as a way to celebrate the culture of independently owned record stores in the U.S. and internationally. Now there are participating stores on every continent except Antarctica. Bargain CDs, Records & Tapes in downtown Everett will be open as usual but is not taking part.
This is 2018, era of digital clouds. Why are people buying vinyl?
“A lot of people like the sound better,” Trett said. “As a company, we carry 50,000-60,000 titles.”
The Lynnwood store opened three years ago in a space previously occupied by a fabric shop. Now it’s 6,000 square feet of LPs, CDs and DVDs. Selections include classical, easy listening, jazz and metal. Aisles with ABBA to Zeppelin.
Record players are also for sale. And sleeves, needles, anti-static brushes and all that paraphernalia.
It’s not just Baby Boomer guys trying to relive their vinyl days by spinning Hendrix on the turntable.
Dakota Tice and Keith Hobbs, both 18, have joined the LP bandwagon.
“It’s an actual physical piece you get to hold,” said Hobbs, of Mukilteo. “It’s gotten bigger because of the whole hipster age that thinks vinyl is better.”
Tice, of Lynnwood, started collecting records a year ago.
“I find vinyls to be just better, the quality and aesthetic of them,” he said. “I try to find albums that aren’t big.”
He’ll partake in Record Store Day, for sure. “I’ll wait in line. Deals. You gotta get those deals,” said Tice, a 1970s throwback in denim overalls with a rainbow peace sign hand patch.
Hobbs can’t make it. He has to work making pizzas Saturday. Bummer.
Both Tice and Hobbs like listening to metal. “More instrumental than vocals,” Hobbs said.
Erik Larsen, 20, of Mill Creek, has about 200 albums.
“It’s another way to collect music and experience music,” Larsen said. “It forces you to sit down and really pay attention.”
He plans to come early to Record Store Day. “In the past when I’ve gotten here there’s not much left.”
Andrea Brown: 425-339-3443; abrown @heraldnet.com. Twitter: @reporterbrown.