Photo by Mick Haupt via Unsplash.
Record Store Day 2021 Essentials: Black Friday Edition
A guide to this year's Record Store Day releases, featuring crucial compilations of hazed-out funk and soul rarites, bulked-up anniversary editions of classics, requisite reissues, revived live performances, and so much more.
Record Store Day returns this Friday for another run of limited-edition drops to cap the year.
Like all previous installments, the Black Friday 2021 edition of the crate-digging holiday arrives with a predictably extensive and unmanageable list of releases. But there's some crucial collection fodder stashed in that endless scroll and even some none-RSD heat from independent reissuers that are more than worthy of their time under the needle.
To aid your travels, we've sketched out a little road map to the more tantalizing Record Store Day exclusives, along with some titles that will stay on the shelves well past this weekend, including crucial compilations of hazed-out funk and soul rarities, bulked-up anniversary editions of beloved and/or unheralded classics, requisite reissues, and a handful of legendary live performances, some of which are making their debut on wax for the very first time this year.
Comb through our list of Record Store Day essentials for Black Friday below and head over to the flagship site to see a (mostly) full list of the day's releases.
Source: NowAgain Records
Various Artists - Tickets for Doomsday: Heavy Psychedelic Funk and Soul Ballads and Dirges 1970-1975
One of the more abundantly available titles on this list is a long-teased follow-up to NowAgain's 2009 compilation of blotted and brilliant small-press acid funk and soul oddities, introducing a new batch of excavations from a vetted and venerable collector and sample scholar. Pick up a copy via Rappcats today.
Tammi Terrell - Irresistible
The first and only solo studio album from the late Tammi Terrell is getting a limited-run on heavyweight 180g yellow vinyl. Released the year before her tragic death, Irresistible finds the Motown star backed by Hitsville hitters, The Funk Brothers, with supporting vocals from The Spinners and The Andantes. Check your local shops for stock.
Jackson Conti - Sujinho
Out of press for more than a decade, Madlib's cosmic 2xLP collaborative album with Brazilian polyrhythm maestro, Ivan "Mamao" Conti, is heading back to the racks. This time with an updated cover, featuring a B+ photo of The Beat Konducta from the very trip to Brazil that birthed the project. You can pick up a copy via Rappcats today.
Source: Legacy Recordings
Maxwell - Now (20th-Anniversary Edition)
Maxwell's chart-topping third studio album is getting a 20th-anniversary reissue on rich "root beer brown" acetate via Legacy Recordings, adding new liners with unseen photos and an essay from Nelson George. Check your local shops for stock.
Source: Get On Down
Bobby Digital (aka RZA) - Digital Bullets
On the sophomore outing for RZA's alter-ego, Bobby Digital resurfaces as a reformed hedonist. Celebrating the 20th-anniversary of the character's enlightenment, Digital Bullets is getting a small-batch 2xLP pressing on opaque yellow wax. Pick up your copy via Get On Down today.
Source: Legacy Recordings
Miles Davis - Live-Evil (50th-Anniversary Edition)
50 years and running, Miles Davis' Live-Evil remains a robustly-entrancing exploration of funk, fusion, and some of their earliest intersections with an Avengers-scale ensemble (featuring Gary Bartz, Keith Jarrett, Michael Henderson, Jack DeJohnette, John McLaughlin, and Airto Moreira.) For the album's silver anniversary, Legacy Recordings brings Live-Evil to a translucent teal double-LP, ripe for a curious (or well-versed) collector's shelf. Check your local shops for stock.
Thundercat - Golden Age of Apocalypse (10th-Anniversary Edition)
Thundercat is celebrating the 10th-anniversary of his introductory romp, Golden Age of Apocalypse, with a translucent red reissue, housed in a gorgeous gold foil gatefold with a holographic sticker of the Brainfeeder bassist's hallmark emblem. On top of the original tracklist (which features appearances from Erykah Badu, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, Kamasi Washington, two-thirds of the Sa-Ra camp, and the oversight of friend, collaborator, and labelmate, Flying Lotus,) the album packs in two bonus cuts on the B-side. Check your local shops for stock.
Source: Record Store Day
Larry Corryell & The Eleventh House - At Montreux
Larry Corryell's high-flying and fusion-forward Montreux Jazz Festival set from 1974 is heading back to wax with an impressive reissue package, featuring a single-sleeve jacket, a printed insert, an OBI strip, and an eye-grabbing "double-split" red and yellow color wax treatment.
Todd Rundgren - Healing
Stateside prog rock pioneer, Todd Rundgren, is issuing a 40th-anniversary pressing of his stellar ninth studio album, complete with the bonus 45 that originally accompanied it, featuring two additional tracks, "Time Heals" and "Tiny Demons."
Source: Legacy Recordings
Jimi Hendrix Experience - Paris 67'
A roaring live set from Jimi Hendrix is making its way to vinyl for the first time ever. Recorded at the iconic Olympia Theater in Paris for French national radio, the set eight-track performance has been a fixture in the bootleg exchange for decades. Pressed to fittingly French red and blue wax, this one will make a fine companion to other revived live shows from the late icon that have landed on wax in recent years.