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Independent music retailers in Aberdeen celebrate Record Store Day 

Nick Duthie is taking part in Record Store Day at Red Robin Record and vinyl cafe.
Nick Duthie is taking part in Record Store Day at Red Robin Record and vinyl cafe.

Two independent retailers in Aberdeen are taking part in Record Store Day, an international celebration of music makers, sellers and buyers.

Over 260 independent record shops across the UK are using the event to highlight their unique culture.

Special vinyl releases are made exclusively for the day in what’s become one of the biggest annual events on the music calendar.

Red Robin Records and Chameleon @ Holburn Hifi are the two taking part in Aberdeen.

Nick Duthie preparing for Record Store Day on Saturday 23 April.

Nick Duthie founded Red Robin Record and vinyl cafe, offering a selection of new records and coffee with a cool vibe, on Correction Wynd in 2019.

He gave up a career in oil and gas after being made redundant and decided to follow his dream inspired by his love of music – just in time to be hit by lockdowns during the coronavirus pandemic.

“It hasn’t been easy – the first year was tough then we went straight into lockdown,” he said.

Nevertheless the shop has continued to thrive despite the challenges.

Mr Duthie said: “It’s been difficult to get going because of where we are located – we don’t get a lot of passing trade so we rely on returning customers. We have a really good following now.”

He added the store’s independent ownership was a key attraction.

“Although the high street has died a death, the response I get is that people want things that are a little bit different.”

His customers range from “teenagers at school right the way up to 80 years old”.

“I’m a coffee roaster as well so I offer coffee, vinyl records and I’ve good good tunes playing. It’s really a place for everyone.”

Taylor Swift poses in the press room with the award for album of the year for “Folklore” at the 63rd annual Grammy Awards. Photo by Jordan Strauss/AP/Shutterstock

Over 300 new music releases are only available in-store in Record Store Day shops.

Mr Duthie said one with the greatest of interest so far is a 7 inch single by recording artist Taylor Swift, the American singer songwriter with several platinum records to her credit.

The event has increased in popularity along with sales of records. Vinyl record sales in 2021 were the highest they’ve been in 30 years according to music industry bible NME, as buyers young and old reject digital and streaming formats.

“The day was set up originally in America 15 years ago and it was basically the resurrection of the vinyl record – and every year since sales have gone up,” said Mr Duthie.

“Only independent stores that sell vinyl can take part, and you have to physically go into a store and buy.”

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