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John Lamb, Published April 18 2009

If the record fits... try it

There is nothing I hate more than shopping for shoes.

(I imagine buying a house would be pretty stressful, but I’ve lived in the same apartment for 13 years and as for cars, I’m a Subaru dude.)

Though I can’t relate to, or willingly watch, “Sex & the City,” I feel some connection with Carrie Bradshaw and her compulsion to purchase footwear.

She needs Manolo Blahniks and Jimmy Choos just as sometimes I crave my My Morning Jacket fix or Jenny Lewis music jones.

All this comes to mind because I am conflicted about National Record Store Day today. Area independent music stores open their doors to adoring audiophiles in search of obscure singles and off-kilter compilations.

Mother’s in Moorhead is boasting special releases from Buckethead, Widespread Panic and Phish, while Fargo’s Orange Records will lure in vinylphiles with exclusive titles from Neil Young, Guided by Voices and the Stooges.

Tempting as some of these may be, I’m trying to save some money these days. Do I really need the 7-inch of the Flaming Lips covering Madonna’s “Borderline?” No, but I’ve heard it, and I want it.

These releases may be exclusive to Record Store Day, but some day MP3s of these songs will be available online for 99 cents or so. But that kind of defeats Record Store Day, doesn’t it?

The RSD Web site features testimonials from a number of musicians about how indie stores shaped their perspectives and how such mom-and-pop shops play a role in society.

So what would Carrie do? She’d probably call an emergency lunch meeting of her four

40-something fabulous friends and over cosmos discuss her conflicted feelings about dropping somewhere between $300 and $500 on a pair of shoes and how somehow this all goes back to deep-seated feelings for Mr. Big. (Though I don’t watch the show, it’s pretty easy to catch what it’s all about.)

So maybe Carrie’s not a very good role model. After all, her collection of shoes comes in second only to Imelda Marcos’ 2,500-plus pair. And being associated with the “Muse of Manila” is not good company.

Carrie spent more than $40,000 on her foot fashion habit. Most of the musicians I like probably haven’t spent that on a drug habit. Well, maybe the Flaming Lips have.

Besides, Carrie would never be caught dead shopping in jeans and a flannel shirt, and I’ve always been more comfortable in hiking boots than in Manolo Blahniks.

Bonus tracks

Top three film record store characters whose recommendations I’d buy:

• Todd Louiso’s Dick in “High Fidelity”

• Steve Buscemi’s Seymour in “Ghost World”

• Annie Potts’ Iona in “Pretty in Pink”

Readers can reach Forum columnist John Lamb at (701) 241-5533