Since its inception, Black Friday has turned the day after Thanksgiving into the unofficial start of the holiday shopping season. Traditionally, Black Friday was about super-cheap prices, and for years was synonymous with being up super-early at chain and mall stores. In some places, that's what this is still about. But we really like the idea of a shopping season, especially when that shopping is, at its heart, a way to show the people you like that you like them. (And a way for them to show you. Gift-getting is awesome, too.)
We work year-round to shine a light on the independent businesses in your local community that sell you records and other things that make you happy, make you smile, make you sing, bring you comfort, bring people together. Everything you find at a record store would be a great gift for someone, so being part of that holiday shopping season, and the biggest shopping day of the year makes sense to us.
So we work with labels, artists, managers and distribution companies who feel the same, and put together a list of titles for that season that are available at participating record stores. They come out on Black Friday (11/23 this year) but may be available at record stores throughout the rest of the year, because record stores are the best place to go with a Holiday Wish List.
Record Store Day and RSD Black Friday are different events, and you can find out more about that on our RSD BLACK FRIDAY FAQ.
The list of special releases is below, in a Website form where you can search and get more information, and a PDF that you can print out and use as a Wish List or Shopping Guide. There are three categories on our list:
EXCLUSIVES: These titles are physically released only at indie record stores.
SMALL RUN/REGIONAL LIST: These titles are either regionally based and sold at specific stores, or are press runs under 1000, which means they may be harder to find at record stores around the country. (If a title is regionally based and is not available throughout the country, it will say that in the description. The majority of titles on this section of the list are there because they have a limited run.)
*Record Store Day does not give or sell the releases to participating stores. Each indie record store makes their own buying decisions and may choose to bring in some titles and not others.
*The titles on the Black Friday list are usually limited in number, as are most things that are created for special time periods or exclusive to certain retailers. This means a store may not get all the copies they wanted, or that a store may sell out of a release before you are able to purchase it.
*Record Store Day and Black Friday release titles are only sold in PHYSICAL participating record stores on the day of their release. After this, stores who have a regular, year-round online website or who sell through marketplaces at non-auction prices, under their store name, may offer the titles on this list for sale online. Always check to make sure you're purchasing from a record store, so you know you're paying a fair price and supporting an independent business.
*The list of titles may change. Titles may be added, titles may drop off, information may be amended.
*Black Friday, for better or worse, is an American "thing". Many other countries are celebrating the kick-off to the holiday season, though, and record stores in those countries may have some of these releases. They just probably won't call them Black Friday titles. Check with your local record store if you're not in the US.
Original author of this entire article: recordstoreday.com