April is a critical month for music, a special time between the doldrums of winter and the chaos of summer festival season. That time of year when you’ve forsaken any and all misguided new-year resolutions, such as trimming back your record collection, and submitted to the temptation that is bringing more tunes into your abode. Good move. Added bonus: Record Store Day 2017 is in a couple weeks, on Saturday, April 22, and with that all sorts of one-off releases and specials. Here’s a roundup of record stores in the East Bay:
1-2-3-4 Go! Records
420 40th St, No. 5, Oakland, 510-985-0325, 1234GoRecords.com
The Skinny: Popular indie record store with a ton of vinyl, and occasional live-gigs.
3435 International Blvd, Oakland, 510-533-2009
The Skinny: Your go-to for Mexican pop.
Amoeba Music Berkeley
2455 Telegraph Ave, Berkeley, 510-549-1125, AmoebaMusic.com
The Skinny: You know.
For Record Store Day: All the releases. Or, at least, probably the most. (There’s a downloadable PDF on Amoeba’s website with 10 pages’ worth of special RSD offerings.)
Champion Sound Records
1729 San Pablo Ave, Oakland, 510-712-7337, ChampionSoundRecords.com
The Skinny: Reggae, dub, dancehall, new and old
644 40th St, No. 104, Oakland, 510-891-1536, Facebook.com/ContactRecordShop
The Skinny: Check out their MacArthur Annex open house this Sunday, April 9, from noon to 5pm, with everything from taco pop-ups to vintage goodies — and beer.
Dave’s Record Shop
2634 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley, 510-666-0336, DavesRecordShop.com
The Skinny: New, used, and rare records.
Down Home Music
10341 San Pablo Ave, El Cerrito, 510-525-2129, DownHomeMusic.com
The Skinny: As the slogan goes, “Serving you roots music since 1976.”
Econo Jam Records
2519 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, 510-465-2559, Facebook.com/EconoJamRecords
The Skinny: New and used records, art gigs and more near Oakland’s Koreatown neighborhood.
For Record Store Day: According to Econo Jam’s Facebook page, Records Store Day 2017 will be a major blowout, including everything from free Black Spring Coffee and vegan donut holes (for those early shoppers) to tunes by DJ Earthquake. For those craving special RSD releases, look for the Bladerunner soundtrack and also used releases that the owners have been holding onto for the entire year to release on RSD.
5555 Claremont Ave, Oakland, 510-655-8400
The Skinny: Jazz-forward collection of used-records in Rockridge.
1734 Alcatraz Ave, Berkeley, 415-999-1139, HerculesRecords.com
The Skinny: New, used, occasional in-stores and events — including a block party on Tuesday, May 2.
2454 Telegraph Ave, Berkeley, 510-900-1563, MadMonkBooks.com
The Skinny: No electronics!
6328 Fairmount Ave, El Cerrito, 510-486-1880, ModLang.com
The Skinny: New and used records, with an emphasis on European imports and re-issues.
Park Blvd Records & Tapes
2014 Park Blvd, Oakland, 510-879-7952, ParkBlvdRecords.com
The Skinny: A place to buy, or sell, or trade-in music, with a focus on hip-hop and beats.
For Record Store Day: Nothing announced online yet, but email and ask: [email protected]
2401 Telegraph Ave, Berkeley, 510-704-1146, RasputinMusic.com
The Skinny: A major record-store presence in the Bay.
For Record Store Day: Stay tuned …
14 Glen Ave, Oakland, 510-808-5505
The Skinny: New arrivals and catalog vinyl releases.
Strictly Vinyl Records
1060 Solano Ave, Albany, 510-679-5040, Facebook.com/StrictlyVinylRecords
The Skinny: A mix of soul, funk, blues, jazz, 45s, and more used records.
331 19th St, Oakland
The Skinny: Vintage, vinyl, and vintage vinyl