As we noted a few months ago, we love music even more than we love beer, and regularly combine those life-enriching pleasures at the B&C desk. On Saturday [4.18], they’ll come together on Record Store Day.
In November, we did a story about Beer Thousand, Dogfish Head’s liquid tribute to the 20th anniversary of Guided By Voices’ cult classic, Bee Thousand. Here’s an excerpt:
Sam Calagione, the founder of Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, is passionate about beer — and music. In the section titled “Rhythm” in his book Brewing Up a Business: Adventures In Beer, he writes, “I have always loved music — I remember waving my magic Wiffle ball bat and chanting hexes on my parents’ radio in an effort to get it to spit forth Laura Branigan’s ‘Gloria’…As I got older my tastes developed, diversified, and intensified, but my love of music goes back to my earliest childhood memories.”
In 2010, Sam combined his love of beer and music with Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew, an imperial stout [which is now a recurring release] commemorating the 40th anniversary of the trumpeter’s milestone disc. Hellhound On My Ale [an imperial IPA] followed in 2011, marking the 100th birthday of storied bluesman Robert Johnson. Dogfish’s Music Series has also spawned a series of one-time [for now] offerings: Faithfull , a Belgian Golden Ale, in honor of the 20th anniversary of Pearl Jam’s Ten; Positive Contact , an herb/spice beer, with Dan the Automator; and American Beauty [an imperial pale ale], a 2013 partnership with the Grateful Dead. [The 2015 take on AB is in stores now.]
So, as Crowded House sang, it’s only natural that Dogfish Head is the Official Beer of Record Store Day, the worldwide celebration of independent music retailers and the permanent and inspiring bond they forge with their customers [aka fellow obsessives]. RSD is highlighted by the release of a jaw-dropping array of very limited edition mostly-vinyl offerings [picture discs, colored discs, 10-inch discs, box sets] by a wide-ranging array of artists [a sample of the Bs: Bee Gees, Big Data, Black Keys, Black Star, Blitzen Trapper, Buzzcocks].
Dave Grohl is the 2015 ambassador of RSD. Here’s a bit of his testimony: “Growing up in Springfield, Virginia in the ’70s and ’80s, my local independent record stores were magical, mysterious places that I spent all of my spare time [and money] in, finding what was to eventually become the soundtrack of my life. Every weekend I couldn’t wait to take my hard-earned, lawnmowing cash down for an afternoon full of discovery. And the chase was always as good as the catch! I spent hours flipping through every stack, examining the artwork on every cover, the titles and credits, searching for music that would inspire me, or understand me, or just to help me escape. These places became my churches, my libraries, my schools. They felt like home. And I don’t know where I would be today without them.”
You can hit the magical, mysterious racks and grab the RSD goodies [and much more] at the Music Box [Newport], Armageddon Shop [Providence], Newbury Comics [Warwick and Providence], Olympic Records [Providence], What Cheer Records + Vintage [Providence], Looney Tunes [Wakefield], and In Your Ear [Warren]. Check their sites for details on in-store performances and other enticements.
OK, back to the beer-and-music connection: Dogfish and Sony collaborated on a vinyl compilation, Music To Drink Beer To, with a dozen potent classic tracks [including Muddy Waters, Iggy & the Stooges, and A Tribe Called Quest; it will be released on RSD on vinyl and CD]. They also commissioned the official RSD poster by artist Marq Spusta [available for free at select stores and bars that sell Dogfish and on RSD at participating music retailers] and a custom mini-traveling turntable by Crosley, with Spusta’s art on the inside of the cover. You can buy the record player [$120] at Dogfish.com — or you can enter to win one at RSD/DFH events at these spots [you get a raffle ticket with each purchase of a DFH beer]: Pour Judgement in Newport will have Aprihop on draft and other Dogfish choices in bottles [all day Saturday]; the Ocean Mist in Matunuck will have 60 Minute IPA on draft, with live music Saturday and Sunday [the winning ticket will be drawn on 4.19 at 10 pm; you don’t have to be there to win]; and the Scurvy Dog in Providence will showcase 90 Minute IPA on draft and Sixty-One in bottles and host a vinyl swap [9-11 pm].
And, to come full circle to the B&C desk, our latest musical obsession is Short Movie, the new album by Laura Marling. Uncap a Dogfish Head and enjoy these samples [and maybe buy a copy on RSD]…