Every April, record stores across the globe celebrate Record Store Day, with limited edition releases, in-store performances and other celebrations of all things vinyl.
But this month, record stores across the U.S. and U.K. will host Cassette Store Day
in honor of the humble cassette tape. On Sept. 27, stores will offer dozens of special cassette releases
from Circle Jerks, Cloud Nothings, J Dilla, They Might Be Giants, R. Stevie Moore, Weedeater and Townes Van Zandt, among many others.
(3301 Chartres St., 504-947-4348) hosts the New Orleans event from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. with songwriter Phil the Tremolo King
, who is releasing his cassette of post-Hurricane Katrina recordings dubbed 4 Track Adventures
. Folk-punk band Blind Texas Marlin
and country outfit Wasted Lives
also perform at the event (and have tapes for sale). Admission is free.
Cassettes are affordable, easy to produce, and, yes, undeniably nostalgic artifacts, but they're a perfect (and cheaper than vinyl) antidote to easy access streaming services and digital downloads, and give artists a relative anonymous distance from the hyper-branded "biz." They also have a built-in, low-budget "warm" sound. Labels like California's Burger Records
have released dozens of new tapes, and there are countless small labels releasing tapes from bedroom-recording artists as well as more established bands. (Among recent local tapes: Heat Dust's demo cassette (with a pretty great cover of Devo's "Gut Feeling")
and minimal electronic pop duo Pretty Bleak
's posthumous full-length Happiness