LIVE! Music: NWA, River Valley celebrate Record Store Day, Backwoods Music Festival kicks off at Mulberry Mountain

LIVE! Music: NWA, River Valley celebrate Record Store Day, Backwoods Music Festival kicks off at Mulberry Mountain

Vinyl lovers, rejoice! Record Store Day is April 22, and there’s so many swank releases and hidden gems to acquire.

Owner of Block Street Records, Wade Ogle, is even bringing doughnuts to the early birds who line up at the shop before 10 a.m.

“Plus, we have drinks and snacks throughout the day,” says Ogle, adding that there will be online and in-store giveaways too.

Ogle says that he has participated in Record Store Day, a bi-annual celebration of independently owned record shops, since Block Street Records opened at 17 N. Block Ave. in Fayetteville in 2014. He’s since opened a second shop at 100 N.W. Second St., Suite 110, in Bentonville.

In the River Valley, vinyl collectors may celebrate at River Valley Records & Collectibles and recently opened Iron Horse Records at 610 Main St. in Van Buren.

“This is going to be like the sixth or seventh year that I’ve done something in my shop,” says Brandon Jones, owner of River Valley Collectibles at 3215 S. 74th St. in Fort Smith..

The shops are collaborating for Record Store Day with discounts and giveaways.

“We do kind of a nontraditional Record Store Day. I’m a smaller shop. I don’t have a distributor. So I don’t ever go out chasing the hot titles, but what I always do is I save a lot of stuff back, a lot of vintage stuff. We always have sales things that I haven’t put out a lot of times ever before,” Jones says.

This year that includes four copies of the incredibly rare Beatles “Butcher” covers along with other “peeled” and “unpeeled” Beatles-based treasures.

Despite the popularity of streaming services, sales of vinyl records have continued to increase. In 2022, BBC News reported that vinyl records outsold CDs for the first time since 1987.

Record Store Day, which began in 2007 as a way to boost indie record stores, is marked by special releases from artists of all calibers each year luring fans of all genres.

“I think it’s because people still just like to have something new and physical music in their hand,” says Jones.

“I think it has a different appeal for different people. Obviously, many want a shot at the limited edition special pressings, which often quickly increase in value. Others, just want to show support to their local record store that day and aren’t all that interested in the RSD pressings,” Ogle says. “It’s an international event. And, it’s just true mom and pop record shops. No big box retailers. Nothing online. Old school. It’s really fun. I think the main benefit for us is that it raises awareness for not only us, but record stores in general. There are over 500 active records shops in the USA alone.”

Backwoods Festival

Tickets are still available for the four-day Backwoods Music Festival April 20-23 at Mulberry Mountain. Headliners include Big Gigantic on Thursday, Lettuce on Friday, The String Cheese Incident on Saturday and the Floozies on Sunday. Also playing are Andy Frasco & The U.N., Apashe, Arkansauce, Boogie T, Keller Williams and so many more.

There are also workshops focusing on yoga, massage, hoop dancing and poi. Plus the River Valley Comics will do some sets featuring Chase Myska, Kyle Gilbert, Cameron Carter, AJ Finney, Sam Price, Edrick Jorge, Bair, Andy Davis and Conrad Lensmeir. The festival takes place at 4117 Mulberry Mountain Loop in Ozark. Learn more at


• Songwriters in the Round with Michael Schembre (Red Oak Ruse), Opal Agafia, Pat Ryan Key and Korey McKelvy (Dandelion Heart, Korey McKelvy Band, Deepwood Mac) starts at 6:30 p.m. April 20 at Meteor Guitar Gallery, 128 W. Central Ave.

• The Roots perform at 8 p.m. April 29; FreshGrass with Caamp, Elle King, Mavis Staples, Sierra Ferrell, Molly Tuttle & Golden Highway, the Del McCoury Band, Tank and the Bangas, Cimafunk, The Lil Smokies, Alison Brown, Becky Buller Band, Miko Marks, Hawktail, Willie Watson, Arkansauce, Combo Chimbita, The Jacob Jolliff Band, Melissa Carper, Willi Carlisle, Alsarah & the Nubatones and Mesafa will be May 19-20; Rina Sawayama performs on Oct. 6 at The Momentary, 507 S.E. E St. in Bentonville.

• Home Sweet Home returns this year with David Ramirez, Joshua James, Ira Wolf, Stephen Day, Smokey & the Mirror, Wilfred, National Park Radio, My Politic, Matt the Electrician and McKenzie Lockhart along with 23 local and regional musicians April 28-29 at various homes and backyards in Bentonville. Hosted by City Sessions.


• Shelley Watson performs at 7 p.m. April 21, Christine Jude Duo plays at 7 p.m. April 22, The Shandies play at 7 p.m. April 28 and Patti Steel, Rob Butler and Pat Ryan Key perform April 29 at Wanderoo Lodge and Gravel Bar, 216 W. Van Buren. 363-6755.

• California Jeff performs at 5 p.m. April 21, Oliver Penn plays at 5 p.m. April 22, Bill Passalacqua plays at 5 p.m. April 28t Gotahold Brewery, 409 W. Van Buren.

• Sad Daddy performs at 6 p.m. April 30; The Infamous Fuzzy Goldwater plays at 9:30 p.m. May 13 at Chelsea’s Corner Bar, 10 Mountain St.

• Eureka Springs Blues Party will be June 1-4 with Funk Factory, Honey Island Swamp Band and King Cabbage Brass Band, Los Roscoes, Red Oak Ruse, Lucas Parker Band, Earl & Them featuring Jesse Dean, Brick Fields Duo, Brody Buster and headliners Ray Wylie Hubbard and Marcia Ball at The Auditorium and The Basin Park Hotel. Tickets and more information at


• Cola and OrOrOr play April 28, Unwed Sailorzzzahara and Modeling play at 8 p.m. May 4 at Smoke & Barrel, 324 W. Dickson St., Suite 2.

• The Brook & The Bluff with Savannah Conley happens at 8:30 p.m. April 20; The Hardtops play at 5:30 p.m. and Conner Smith with MacKenzie Carpenter perform at 9 p.m. April 21; The Ultimate Prince Tribute begins at 8:30 p.m. April 22 at George’s Majestic Lounge, 519 W. Dickson St.

• JerGriffin Combo plays at 7 p.m. April 20; DJ SoulFree Dance Night starts at 8 p.m. April 21; Circle of Thirds performs at 8 p.m. April 22; at Six Twelve Coffeehouse & Bar, 3980 W. Wedington Drive.

 Lucero April 21, Shakey Graves April 30, moe May 2; The Toadies May 4; The Record Company May 10; Colton Dixon May 14; Hippo Campus with Gus Dapperton May 20 and Jason

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