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The Essentials: Record Store Day 2022 (April Edition)
Round 1 of Record Store Day 2022 is upon us.
This Saturday, Record Store Day 2022 will take over the crates and shelves of shops across the country.
The first of three installments this year features literally hundreds of limited edition vinyl pressings, many of which are for albums that haven't been reissued in decades, while others are seeing their first-ever release on wax. Instead of sending you into the trenches without a map, we're once again surveying the release calendar for some particularly compelling prospects to seek out during your excavations. From compilations of ultra-rare funk and soul to conceptual mid-2010s R&B tapes to political post-bop essentials and well beyond, this year's list of must-cop RSD releases covers a whole lot of sonic and geographic terrain.
Comb through 10 hand-picked Record Store Day 2022 exclusives below and head over to the official list for the full slate of this weekend's drops. Check back for our next round of selections ahead of the June 18th edition of the crate-digging holiday.
Max Roach - We Insist! Max Roach's Freedom Now Suite
Initially released in 1961, the five-movement masterpiece We Insist! commenced a decades-long streak of politically potent post-bop compositions from seminal jazz drummer, Max Roach. Commemorating the album's 60th-anniversary (a year late, likely on account of industry-wide vinyl manufacturing delays) the album is getting a very limited reissue (of just 2,000 copies,) on clear wax, which will be a hard-to-find, but easy-to-play, accompaniment to the OG release, which will run you somewhere between $65 (for stereo,) and $150 (for mono) in the secondhand market and is probably best left stashed on the shelf for preservational purposes.
Source: Tamayo Records
Various Artists - Panama's Soul Gems
Founded in 1963, Tamayo Records was at the center of Panama's musical melting pot in the '60s and '70s. Across hundreds of releases, the label documented a fringe calypso-tinged funk and soul scene informed by sounds of the Caribbean and American pop music. On their new compilation, Tamayo presses 11 rarities culled from its archive to red, white, and blue vinyl, celebrating an overlooked history of inventive and infectious regional hits that deserve a second glance and will inspire many more.
John Williams - Lost in Space: Title Themes from Irwin Allen's Hit TV Series
Only a handful of composers (living or otherwise,) can claim to have been active and thriving for seven consecutive decades. John Williams is one of them. And some of the 90-year-old maestro's earliest work bookends and threads the cult '60s sci-fi series, Lost In Space. On the A-side of this upcoming quasi-compilation, you'll hear eight of Williams' arrangements for the show, while the back half is furnished with interviews with cast members and the show's creator, Irwin Allen. Pressed to purple wax and packaged with set photos and liners written by the show's producer, Kevin Burns, this cosmic collection of Williams' work is a must-cop for seasoned and novice fans of the series.
Source Luv N' Haight
The Pharaohs - In The Basement
Originally released on CD in 1996, In The Basement is a collection of songs recorded live in 1972 by The Pharaohs, a group that evolved out of Maurice White's college band, The Jazzmen. Led by White and several musicians that would join him in founding Earth, Wind & Fire, the towering 15-member ensemble only released one album, The Awakening, in 1971. Stewed in gritty funk vamps and ascendent fusion send-ups, the album serves as a jolting preamble to EWF's crossover years. Though it's rougher and far less produced, In The Basement, offers another intimate glimpse at White's early work and the jazz-anchored sound that defined EWF's first four albums. It's arriving on vinyl for the first time ever via Luv N' Height. At just 1,000 copies, you'll want to put this at the top of your most-wanted list.
Source: CAM Sugar
Bruno Nicolai - La Dama Rossa Uccide Sette Volte
If you've yet explore the wide and wild world of 1970s Italian film soundtracks, that's entirely your loss. But there's no time like now and perhaps no better entry point than Bruno Nicolai's lush and suspenseful treatment for the 1972 film, La Dama Rossa Uccide Sette Volte (The Red Queen Kills Seven Times.) Originally released on CD in 2005 (a copy of which will run you about $80,) the remastered audio from the score is getting its first reissue in seven years to celebrate the film's 50th-anniversary, adding two previously unreleased songs to the tracklist.
Source: Trojan Records
Various Artists - Treasure Isle Presents: Soul Power '68
Another stellar label compilation hitting shelves this weekend, Soul Power '68 is a trove of rare and notable rock steady singles produced by Duke Reid during a prolific streak at Treasure Isle and Doctor Bird Records. Recently discovered in an archive following Trojan Records' relaunch of Doctor Bird, the 12-track sequence is seeing a very limited first pressing this weekend. Make sure you keep an eye out for one of the only 900 copies hitting the shelves.
Source: Craft Recordings
Various Artist - Jazz Dispensary: Super Skunk
Jazz Dispensary never misses. With their latest compilation, Super Skunk, the reissue label explores the outer limits of jazz with a sequence of explosively vital selections from Cannonball Adderley, Gary Bartz, The Bar Kays, Woody Herman, The Pazant Brothers, and more. The album is cut to cloudy red waw and fit with cover artwork from GRAMMY-winning designer Masaki Koike to complete the package.
Childish Gambino - Kauai
Released in 2014, Childish Gambino's Kauai EP is a verdant and kaleidoscopic concept project that, at the time, signaled Donald Glover might just ditch rap and try his hand at the pop and r&b charts for prosperity's sake. Ultimately, that route wasn't taken, but it was teased on this polished and playful seven-track co-starring a young Jaden Smith, which was released along a day apart from, STN MTN (Glover's slept-on Gangsta Grillz tape,) and is set for its first official vinyl release on Saturday. And it happens to be amongst the more plentiful pressings shipping out this weekend. Pre-order your copy via Rough Trade today.
Source: Nature Sounds
Roy Ayers - Virgo Vibes
Long before pioneering fusion and soul jazz, Roy Ayers was deep in his straight-ahead hard-bop bag. His sophomore album, Virgo Vibes, is a glowing document of the vibrophonist's seering chops and the assembly of a prestigious backing band, featuring Joe Henderson on tenor sax, Charles Tolliver on trumpet, Buster Williams on bass, and a young Herbie Hancock playing under the psuedonym, Ronnie Clarke. It'll make a stellar addition to the collection, but if you don't manage to secure one of the 1,200 copies of the reissue, the OG pressing is still remarkable affordable at around $40 for a clean mono copy.
Source: Culture Factory
Larry Coryell - Fairyland
In 1971, Larry Coryell's Montreaux Jazz Festival set was comitted to wax as his debut for Mega Records. Backed by the legendary Bernard Purdie on drums and Chuck Rainey on bass, the jazz guitarist soars over an air-tight and esteemed accompaniment, slingshotting between subdued suites and full-on fusion freakouts. The 50th-anniverary reissue is pressed to marbled pink and white vinyl with the original artwork and a printed inner sleeve modeled after the original pressing.