Record Store Day: The Movie set for worldwide cinema release

Posted on 27 August 2011
By Richard Lewis
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After the huge success of Record Store Day 2011, the official film of the event is being given a limited release at cinemas worldwide.

Sound It Out, made by documentary maker Jeanie Finlay focusing on a record shop of the same name has just gained a UK cinema release following success earlier this year across the Atlantic. Check out the trailer.

Described as ‘High Fidelity with a Northern Accent’ by its director, the film was originally screened to great acclaim at South by Southwest film festival in March.

Director Jeanie Finlay grew up three miles from the shop’s location in Stockton, Teeside.

The equivalent of Nick Hornby’s Champion Vinyl record shop is Sound It Out in Stockton, ran by Tom Butchard.

The store is the last surviving record shop in the region, bucking the trend against downloading and Amazon.

The film follows the buying obsessions of the shop’s customers, Tom’s own thoughts on music and his banter with shop regulars.

Shop owner Tom admits to being surprised why his shop has endured while others haven’t.

He told the NME, ‘It’s a poor area in Stockton so I don’t really know why it’s the only record shop in the area to have survived. But people want to come in and see what isn’t in the charts.’

Tom was advised to sell records that were more commercially successful but insisted on stocking niche and independent releases, a practice he believes has ensured the shop’s survival.

The film, released to commemorate Record Store Day 2011 marks the most successful year of the venture yet, with vinyl emporiums selling out many of the exclusive releases.

Figures released in July showed a huge spike in vinyl sales due to Record Store Day with classics old and new selling strongly.

Held on April 16th, at Liverpool’s Probe Records there were scenes of people queuing outside the shop before opening time.

Queues of 100 people deep snaked out into the street as record buyers snapped up limited edition releases and re-issued rarities.

3B Records also reported extremely brisk trade, with both shops making their first foray into the event in 2011.

Adding to the triumph over adversity theme of Sound It Out is that the film was funded entirely by fans.

The film was funded by over 250 members of the public, who put forward enough money for the documentary to premiere at SXSW in Austin, Texas.

MSN Movies said of the film, ‘Gorgeously shot, loaded with ace tunes and full of real people you come to know and like, Sound It Out was the unexpected pure pleasure of this year’s indie documentaries at SXSW.’

Despite this transatlantic success however, Tom is keen for Sound It Out to remain in its present location.

The shop owner said, ‘I want to carry on as we are. People have been coming here for 20 years so I wouldn’t relocate, Stockton is home!’

Sound It Out is available now on DVD, with a re-issue on DVD and Blu-Ray including bonus footage to follow later in the year.