All happening as Avalanche hits 40 years - Kevin Buckle
If nothing else it gave me a chance to ask about stocking her t-shirts and also getting in Rezillos merchandise which we haven’t had since our Grassmarket shop days when we were given the stock left after their American tour.
While established artists and their labels and record companies whether big or small will now have their fans buying directly for a new release, they are far less successful at selling their merchandise on a day to day basis as the focus on a new album wanes.
Even stars as big as Harry Styles will begrudgingly make their exclusive releases available to shops once the initial flurry of interest has died down, but of course the problem for many shops is that simply mopping up any business that is left after the dedicated fans have all bought online is not enough.
As I have said before luckily Avalanche distanced itself from the rat race of selling new releases some time ago now and while we will still stock the vast majority of new releases it is not what we depend on to pay the bills.
I recently managed to acquire some light blue vinyl copies of The Rezillos 1979 album Mission Accomplished... But the Best Goes On, reissued in the States in 2018 so if I can get more t-shirts we will have all bases covered.
The end of the month also sees a new album from contemporaries The Skids, Destination Dusseldorf, along with the reissue of their 1979 album Days In Europa. Sadly no merchandise planned as yet but we live in hope.
June 30 also sees the reissue of two of Avalanche’s best selling Scottish albums of all time with the release on coloured vinyl and CD of Underachievers Please Try Harder (2003) and Let’s Get Out Of This Country (2006) by Camera Obscura. This is great timing as I will soon be promoting our best selling Scottish albums of all time as part of our 40 years of Avalanche celebrations.
As if all this wasn’t enough there is a new album from one of the shop’s favourite local bands Meursault out the following week, though frustratingly it would appear that there is vinyl but no CD release, and while there is much talk of the vinyl revival the demand for CDs should not be underestimated.
Back on the merchandise front Avalanche has been chosen to sell this year’s Waverley Market Pride t-shirt with a design from a local artist and all proceeds going to Time for Inclusive Education (TIE) who are Scotland’s LGBT Inclusive Education charity.
There was a time I saw Avalanche as being about helping artists reach an audience as much as it was about giving customers what they were looking for, but these days we are far more customer focused as bands and their labels mistakenly feel they can do a shop’s job themselves.
We never stopped selling vinyl and now we will keep selling CDs, and while it is clear that customers would like merchandise from artists we will do our best to source it.