“In one of my final acts as Record Store Day ambassador, I encourage everyone who comes to the Third Man record store in Nashville to be able to hear themselves on a vinyl record, and maybe even mail it to someone they love.”
“Actively venturing to your local record shop is one of those honors and privileges in this life that we just shouldn’t take for granted. Certain beautiful experiences can only happen in the environment of a record store and I just thought that nothing could drive that point home more than a one-of-a-kind machine that lets you not only record your own vinyl record, but send it to anyone, anywhere in the world to share a song, poem, or private message with. I know those warm, scratchy tones send tingles up (and sometimes down) MY spine. Even if you aren’t instrumentally inclined, you could hold up an iPhone playing a song and sing along with the music and combine the best of all worlds tangible, digital, and romantic. And for those still skeptical or not sure if they’re brave enough to do it, think of it this way; it’s almost the same thing as illegally downloading an mp3 and emailing it to someone. Well…, almost. enjoy record store day everyone. I hope that you find that special song and someone makes you smile in the process.”
– Jack White III
On Saturday, April 20th, Jack White and Third Man Records will unveil their Third Man Recording Booth, a refurbished 1947 Voice-o-Graph machine that records up to 2 minutes of audio and dispenses a one-of-a-kind 6″ phonograph disc to the user. Whether it be a song, a message to a lover, an audio postcard or just the curiosity of a process that has mystified so many folks for ages, the ability to “hear yourself as others hear you” is not only a tagline here…it’s an invitation, a charge, a call to arms.
An arcade staple through the middle of the 20th century and famously used by Martin Sheen’s character in the film Badlands, these “make your own record” booths were popular audio peculiarities that fell out of vogue in the 1960s and 70s. Like the records of old, users of the Third Man Recording Booth are encouraged to mail their recording to a loved one. Third Man even offers custom-printed envelopes and postage stamps to make that happen. Located across the room from Third Man’s Dip’n’Dunk photo booth folks can even throw in a photo strip with the record to make it extra special.
The Third Man Recording Booth will be the only machine of its kind in the world that is both operational and open to the public. The booth will run on custom Third Man tokens already in use in the Third Man Novelties Lounge.
In a promotional video showcasing the process, Nashville native and Raconteur Brendan Benson uses the booth to record a heartfelt ballad he specifically wrote for the Third Man Record Booth.
Fans who record in the booth will be able to submit digitized versions of their recordings to Third Man to be streamed on a dedicated page on the Third Man Records website.
Additionally, Third Man will be hosting live performances by both Karen Elson and Mark Watrous and selling limited edition colored vinyl copies of the White Stripes Elephant to celebrate Record Store Day at its Nashville location.
For those who are unable to make the trek out to Nashville, Third Man is also hosting a pop-up shop and live performances at the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs, CA. as part of their 10-day Desert Gold event.