There are buds on the trees. Daffodils are blooming. And music nerds and record collectors are preparing for one of the biggest days of the year. Record Store Day is an annual celebration of all things vinyl, all things local, and all things music. In Cincinnati and our neighboring cities, we’re lucky to have so many local, independent record stores to choose from. Even more so, we’re fortunate that so many just… get it.
Plaid Room Records, in Loveland, has had a big 2019 - and it’s only April. Check out our piece from last year for some of the history of one Southwest Ohio’s newest spots for vinyl fanatics to get their fix. For this year’s installment, we’ve checked in with co-owner of Plaid Room and sister label Colemine Records, Terry Cole, to see what’s happened since last year. Turns out, quite a lot.
2018 and 2019 have been really transformative years for Plaid Room. Can you tell us about the decision to move into the newer space, and what kinds of changes that decision has brought to you and your customers?
Big changes to be sure! Towards the end of 2017, it was becoming apparent that both the shop (Plaid Room) and the label (Colemine) we're going to be needing more space as both were growing at a rapid rate. So last summer we purchased an 8000 square foot building in downtown Loveland to be the new home for our shop and label. For us, it was a very stressful process, but now that we are moved in it's been fantastic. Our shop now has four times as much usable retail space, which has enabled us to increase our stock dramatically. Our mail order business for the shop and label has a dedicated space for shipping and warehousing. Our recording studio now has a permanent home upstairs so that we can track new records whenever we want, where as before we could only record when the shop was closed. Plus we've also added a new business venture in Tupelo House upstairs, where Whitney Pelfrey is operating a coworking and event space. So although it's a big building, we're occupying pretty much every inch of it right now. And for our customers, it means more space to browse, better lighting, a better selection of records, and the return of our stage for in-store performances! It was the right time for us and we really think everything came together perfectly.
RSD is a BIG deal at Plaid Room, and has been since you opened your doors. What about this particular day is so important to you? Why do you think customers have responded the way that they have?
Well, when there's a day dedicated to your specific retail industry, you've really got to make the most of it, whatever that means! For us, record stores have always been a place of discovery and a place to find something that you love that you didn't even know existed. In this age of the internet and infinite information at all of our fingertips, it's still nice to just walk into a shop and ask for a recommendation. And from the shop side of things, there's nothing more fun that turning someone on to something they love!
You have some official RSD releases this year, right? Tell us about those!
We do! Colemine Records is releasing Soul Slabs Vol. 2 this year! It's a 3LP box set compilation containing 27 songs from 27 different artists pulling from our 7-inch releases over the last few years. Songs from Durand Jones & The Indications, Monophonics, The Dip, Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio, Ben Pirani, Jr. Thomas & The Volcanos, The Sure Fire Soul Ensemble, Orgone, and a ton more! We released Vol. 1 a couple of years ago and that was how a lot of shops came to discover us. Since then, the label has grown a ton and we've released a bunch of great 45s, so this box set is a great way to showcase the talent that we are lucky to work with on daily basis. We pressed 2500 copies and we think it's a release that's going to do very well for shops around the country!
What special plans have you come up with for RSD 2019?
It's gonna be a wild day! Here are the main highlights:
- Huge quantities of RSD Exclusives (the most in the midwest)
- Over 1000 freshly priced and cleaned used LPs hitting the floor
- Hundreds of $1, $2, and $3 LPs going out
- 30% of all "older" used LPs
- 15% off all non-RSD new LPs (including box sets)
- Limited edition RSD posters
- Limited edition pint glasses for RSD
Plus all of the local businesses are opening up early to serve food and participate in the madness! And as always, our current RSD inventory is always live on our website.
It updates as we continue to put items into inventory up until Friday night and will continue to update on RSD as items sell :) Cheers to all the local shops and we hope everyone has a great Record Store Day!
Thanks to Terry for taking the time to answer our questions and give us the lowdown on everything happening in the world of Plaid Room Records. Happy RSD 2019, friends!