Talking All Things Vinyl to Celebrate Record Store Day
It’s Record Store Day on Saturday, 23rd April – a celebration of record stores around the world and the vinyl culture they spawned and support. Think vinyl is dying out in this digital age? Think again. Vinyl sales are on the rise! The British Phonographic Industry claims more than five million vinyl records were sold in 2021 – the highest number for 30 years. And in the US, the Recording Industry Association of America reports vinyl sales of $1 billion for last year – a 61% hike.
We love the ‘black gold’. So to celebrate Record Store Day, we’re talking all things vinyl with some of our Ibiza Global Radio 95.3 UAE DJ family…
Jixo (Jixo & Danz)
The first vinyl record I bought was… Depeche Mode’s It’s No Good. It came out on the Mute label sometime in the ’90s.
The most valuable record in my collection is… Underworld’s Born Slippy. Released in the mid-’90s, this song is forever our classic tune. The original came out during one of the best eras for dance music.
The first record store I visited was… in our hometown in Lebanon, Beirut. Located in Hamra Street, it was called Chico and was founded in the ’60s. This place was so special.
The best record store on the planet is… Phonica in London. I haven’t visited many record stores but of the ones I have, I like Phonica a lot. This shop has a lot of awesome records.
The best thing about visiting a physical record store is… chatting with the owner or the staff. They usually have an encyclopedic knowledge of music and they know all the best tracks in their library. Also, there’s something special about crate-digging in a record store. It gives you a special feeling and you never want to leave!
If I owned a record store I’d call it… Studio 75
Support vinyl emporiums on Record Store Day and all year round because… they keep us alive and always support local artists.
The first vinyl record I bought was… Charly by The Prodigy. It was released in 1991 and was the first record I bought as a DJ a few years later. I still have it. Before that though my dad gave records to me. Things like Phil Collins, Mike Oldfield’s Tubular Bells and a Studio 54 record.
The most valuable record in my collection is… Shaka’s Red Like Blood with E-Nuff on the flip. It’s a very old jungle record from 1994. Not many were pressed up.
The first record store I visited was… in Northwich, Cheshire, in England. It was tucked around the back of Woolworths. I have no idea of its name but it stocked some good jungle and trance music.
The best record store on the planet was… Hard To Find Records, in Birmingham. I loved going there. I saved my money for months to spend on a fresh batch of vinyl.
The best thing about visiting a physical record store is… just going in and physically holding a record, flicking through the selection and waiting in line with about 20 records in your hand for the Technics booth to become free so you can have a listen. There’s nothing like it. I miss those days.
If I owned a record store I’d call it… Direct Drive Record Store. If you’ve ever played vinyl you’ll know why.
Support vinyl emporiums on Record Store Day and all year round because… vinyl is something to cherish. Music is so much more easily accessible now. It’s consumed differently and, I feel, not appreciated as much. Now you can stream, download and collect hundreds of tracks a week. When you picked records you’d choose very wisely.
Slink into the evenings with Clint’s Sunset Sessions, weekdays, from 4pm – 8pm, on Ibiza Global Radio 95.3 UAE.
Photo: Vladimir Proskurovskiy/Unsplash
The first vinyl record I bought was… the Marco Carola Remix of Chris Liebing’s Gassenhaur. This was the first record I bought myself as techno culture took hold. It’s such a strong track – incredibly clean and deep. I still have it but after hundreds of plays it’s a little crackly.
The most valuable record in my collection is… The Surgeon Remix of Rue East’s Birmingham. We played this tune to close our techno party sets and it became our kind of anthem back in the day.
The first record store I visited was… a good underground store run by Koldo Zapatilla, a well-known DJ and producer on the electronic music scene in the region. Close to San Sebastian, in Basque Country, it was a social club for electronic music lovers. We spent so many great afternoons there and found some incredible releases that we played so many times.
The best record store on the planet is… definitely SpaceHall, in Berlin. It’s the perfect place to get lost for a day – or two – of digging.
The best thing about visiting a physical record store is… just chilling out, taking your time, not rushing, diving into the music and finding surprises in every single box you dig into.
If I owned a record store I’d call it… Lost.
Support vinyl emporiums on Record Store Day and all year round because… we all need to keep the proper crackling analogue sound alive. The sound heals your ears.
Keep it locked on Ibiza Global Radio 95.3 UAE to catch Xavi’s Day Break show, every weekday.
Roberto Mermand (Mar+Mer)
The first vinyl record I bought was… Danny Tenaglia’s Music Is The Answer. It was released on the Twisted label in 1998.
The most valuable record in my collection is… the same record – Danny Tengalia’s Music Is The Answer. This record has sentimental value to me. It represents so many great memories and reminds me of the special times I had playing this track in the late ’90s and early 2000s. It also has great lyrics and a really positive message.
The first record store I visited was… Phonica Records, in Soho, London. It’s a great place to visit, hang out and buy amazing records and white labels. This store has a great vibe and the staff are also very cool and helpful.
The best record store on the planet is… Brooklyn Record Exchange, in New York. It has amazing vibes, cool staff and great location.
The best thing about visiting a physical record store is… crate digging and looking for unique records. This is what makes visiting record stores so special.
If I owned a record store I’d call it… Merman Records
Support vinyl emporiums on Record Store Day and all year round because… they support the independent and underground music scene that helps artists to thrive.
Tune into Live by Mar+Mer, every Thursday, from 9pm – 10pm, on Ibiza Global Radio 95.3 UAE.
Photo: Shadi Megallaa at The Flip Side by Jalal Abuthina
Venture to The Flip Side on Record Store Day
Did you know there’s a growing community of vinyl addicts in the UAE? They gravitate to The Flip Side, Dubai’s independent record store in Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz. Opened in 2017 by DJ and Ark to Ashes label boss Shadi Megallaa, The Flip Side is a great place to hang, check out a wide range of records and hear local DJs playing in-store sessions.
“I’ve always been a vinyl fanatic and always will be,” says Shadi. “For me, nothing beats shopping for music physically and putting the needle on a record for the first time. In a record store, you get to meet people, share recommendations and be part of the culture.”
The Flip Side is celebrating Record Store Day on Saturday, 23rd April, with in-store DJ sessions throughout the day. Expect special releases and maybe even a few bargains. Drop by and get involved!