Third Man Records is putting out some very special releases three weeks prior to the April 24 release of Blunderbuss. Lots of exciting news about these records and Jack White’s recent Wonka-esque April Fools endeavor after the jump.
There will be an onslaught of unique releases come April 21 on Third Man Records Record Store Day, and one of these releases actually makes world history. This groundbreaking announcement revolves around how Third Man Records is releasing the 12-inch single of Jack White’s “Sixteen Saltines.” Making history, TMR is including a George Ingram-disigned playable etching of their logo on the B-side of the vinyl. As described by TMR, “the grooves of the record play through the image, making it the world’s first-ever playable etched record.” As if that isn’t enough, there will be an alternate print of the record pressed on a clear vinyl and filled with a psychedelic blue liquid. Unfortunately, these rare and groundbreaking records can only be purchased at Third Man Records national headquarters. Check out the video below so see what these records actually look like.
On top of that, Record Store Day will debut the new single from Karen Elson, “Milk and Honey”, which is pressed on a conveniently colored milk and honey split-covered vinyl. Third Man is also releasing a red vinyl with black wisps edition of the White Stripes “Hand Springs” and “Red Death at 6:14”. In commemoration of last year’s Record Store Day, there will also be a CD/LP release of Jerry Lee Lewis Live at Third Man.
Since clearly these special releases and innovations in vinyl art weren’t enough for Jack White, he also chose to play the role of Willie Wonka on April Fools Day. Only difference is that he hid his golden tickets in balloons and that this was no prank. From the Third Man Records store in Nashville, 1000 flexi-disc records attached to helium balloons flew up in the sky on April 1 to celebrate the release of Jack White’s new single “Freedom at 21”. Check out this video and watch the balloons soar in the sky.
Being considerate of the environment, TMR made sure to use biodegradable latex balloons and all-natural twine. Along with the disc, each balloon also contains a custom postcards with specific instructions. Anyone who should find a balloon should head over to this website that Third Man Records has put up that catalogues the discovery location and dates of the various findings.
This balloon endeavor highlights Jack White’s non-traditional approach toward music distribution. As of now, only about 10% of the balloons have been found, which will make these records quite a valuable keepsake. For all we know, someone will find the remnants of a popped balloon in years to come.