In today’s downloading age, visiting a record store can still offer many charms to its consumers.

And according to Jennifer Larry, marketing manager at Toronto’s Sunrise Records 336 Yonge St. location, record stores still have a great appeal to music lovers despite being able to get music online.

“Music, no matter what format it’s in, will always make an impact in people’s lives,” Larry tells Metro. “The best thing about a record store is taking your own personal experiences and sharing them in an environment where people live for music.”

From engaging in really cool conversations about concerts people may have been to or checking out the artwork of a particular album to exposing yourself to new and underground music, record stores still have lot to offer.

Larry says it’s also a great place to find albums that are nostalgic or rare and records from music greats like Led Zeppelin or Pink Floyd to add to your collection. Having something tangible is another great reason people still invest in records or CDs.

“I don’t in any way think there’s anything wrong with downloading as far as exposing yourself to music, but I do think you should always pay for your downloads just like you pay for your records,” she says. “It’s cool if people want to get a little taste for their audio by going online to the MySpace sites or go to the band sites.”

Realizing how popular visiting a record store was evident to Larry last Saturday when Sunrise Records took part in Record Store Day with an eight-hour free concert with nine different bands, along with hundreds of independently owned music stores across the United States and Canada.

Spearheaded by the Alliance of Independent Media Stores, Coalition of Independent Music Stores, Music Monitor Network, Newbury Comics and Value Music Group of Indie Stores, Record Store Day was a national effort to keep the spirit of the record store alive.

“The whole idea really of Record Store Day was really to just bring back the essence and culture and to just remind people why record stores rock,” says Larry. “At the start of the day we had about 60 people in the store, and by the end there was over 350 people rocking to the concert.”

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