It’s been a rough couple of years for record stores, especially in the DC area — once heavily trafficked retailers like CD Game Exchange and DJ Hut both went the way of the dodo in 2009. Luckily, the international event known as Record Store Day is giving audiophiles good reason to get off the internet and drop their bucks at the handful brick and mortar shops still standing.

Rolling around again on April 17th, 2010, Record Store Day sees most area retailers offering deep discounts on their stock and, for a select participating few, free or limited edition releases from flagship independent labels like Sub Pop, Matador and Vice. (Check back here soon for list of the RSD 2010 goodies that will be up for grabs.)

Even though there’s less than half a dozen proper record stores (Barnes & Noble can suck it) still doing business in the District, they’ve proven that there is power in a union after all. All are within walking distance of one another, so, come April 17th, here’s how to hit all five of DC’s best record stores in one fell swoop starting at 14th & U and terminating in Dupont.

1. Som Records • 1843 14th Street NW

2. Crooked Beat Records • 2318 18th Street NW

3. Smash! Records • 2314 18th Street NW

4. Red Onion Records & Books • 1901 18th Street NW

5. Melody Record Shop • 1623 Connecticut Avenue NW

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Community Walking RECORD STORE DAY 2010 in Washington, DC