Hippo Records and Underdog Records, two of the Triad’s notable vinyl shops, are coming together to present the 1 st Annual Record Fair at the Blind Tiger.
What can you expect to see at a record fair? Aside from the obvious (records), expect more than 30 vendors, some traveling from out of state, as well as local wax hustlers searching for the best copy of whatever album they are looking for.
Unique events like this are great for the music community – both in networking and consumerism. Hippo Records owner Patrick Lemons thinks that with the lack of record events in the Triad in recent years, this will be a momentous occasion and one that really gets the ball rolling in the wake of vinyl’s resurgence in the music community.
“The first (event) is always the one you worry about because you don’t know the response,” he said. “Having people come from out of town to Greensboro is great for commerce here.”
Lemons tapped Winston-Salem’s Underdog Records to co-promote the event, mainly because it helps create buzz in the neighboring city, and because he believes Underdog’s owner Jonathan Hodges is doing positive things in the music community.
“With the record resurgence, I think it’s going to be a great platform for people to get exposed to (records)…drag you friend to it that doesn’t want to go,” Lemons said.
Lemons added that if it does well it will help bring Greensboro back to where he sees how it used to be, which was being known for its music scene.
The hard part about records, though, is the market. With digital sales now taking most of the business, buying tangible goods – i.e. records – is harder. However, Billboard counted more than 6.5 million units sold so far in 2014, which accounts for 3.5 percent of overall music sales, according to Nielsen Soundscan. Not bad for an industry that most refer to as antiquated, and what Nielsen also reported as being only .2 percent of the industry 10 years ago.
Lemons and the vendors at the Record Fair are hoping to up that number just a little bit more, and with the current buzz, it seems that won’t be an issue.
The event will be held Sunday at The Blind Tiger, and Lemons said that there are still open vendor tables for those interested. Tables can be rented for $25, and the event is free to all ages. The bar in the Blind Tiger will also be open. !