BK Music is one of my happy places. I could give you a slew of reasons why (Record Store Day acquisitions would definitely rank among them), but there’s a single, indicative vignette I want to share with you today:
Last Tuesday, I headed to BK on a mission. I found out via Facebook that the store had gotten in a “very limited quantity” of advance vinyl copies of Jason Isbell’s new album, Southeastern, and I wanted a piece of the action. Bad. Not only was this a chance to hear the album a week early, it was also a chance to own a one-of-a-kind version of it. These “Indie Exclusive” LPs don’t have the same glossy album art as the copies that are due out tomorrow; they’re more… rustic, I guess you might say. They have plain cardboard jackets, lettering that was applied via stencil and spray paint, and a hand-written number indicating which of the 500 copies in existence it is. I’m a sucker for quirky versions like this. (They actually represent an essential loophole in my elaborate and self-imposed record-buying rule system, which is the only thing standing between Mrs. YHT and me and certain bankruptcy.) In fact, I’d gotten something similar at BK when The Alabama Shakes’ debut full-length came out.
When I made to the BK parking lot, another car was pulling in just in front of me — an older couple in a Buick or Lincoln or something — and of course, because I’m me, I exited my Honda in an outwardly quiet panic about whether they were on the same mission. Did I want to rush to the door first and turn my back on the couple and every available shred of decorum and dignity? Yes, yes I did. Did I rush said door? No I did not. But boy was I relieved when the older man started heading in the direction of the wall of guitar strings, and I was even more relieved when, just a minute or so later, I had my hands on the store’s last limited-edition copy of Southeastern. Mission accomplished.
These victorious moments keep adding up, and they’re a testament to how wonderful it is when you find a place — could be a bookstore, restaurant, concert venue or anything else — that just seems to be on your same wavelength. I don’t know whether it’s the thought that someone out there likes the same stuff as you, or just that you have a streak of good experiences somewhere, but it certainly doesn’t happen every day, and when it does, it’s unmistakable and incredibly meaningful. Many thanks to BK for doing such a great job getting stuff like this in, and for making my trips to Midlothian Turnpike so consistently rewarding.
While I was there on Tuesday, I also found out about an exciting in-store performance they have coming up. Surfer Blood’s new album Pythons comes out tomorrow, and the band has chosen to spend a chunk of the release day at BK, with a special acoustic performance at 6 p.m. and a signing session directly afterwards. Check out Pythons track “Demon Dance” below and get ready for what’s sure to be a memorable Tuesday evening.