As you know might have heard earlier this summer, Third Man Records is opening up a satellite store in Detroit’s Cass Corridor, or as Pitchfork calls it “where music history was made.” Well, it turns out that was only the first of the label’s plans for the building at 441 West Canfield Street, which they purchased last year with Detroit manufacturing company Shinola. Third Man will be opening a vinyl record pressing plant, and in it we will run brand new record presses. There’s a bottlenecking in the record pressing industry right now – so much glorious demand, so few presses. They want to help ease the flow, and they want to bring more “real-life manufacturing jobs back to Detroit.”
Jack White and company have purchased eight presses from German startup Newbilt, and expect to happen mid-2016.
Here’s what Pitchfork wrote about the pressing plant after speaking with Ben Blackwell about their plans.
“While the pressing plant won’t be operational when Third Man opens on Black Friday, they eventually plan to house at least eight working presses. A window in the shop will let customers see the manufacturing floor as part of Third Man’s ongoing initiative to educate the public about vinyl culture and show that, as Blackwell puts it, ‘all this stuff is alive and well.’
While the manufacturing arm definitely means that Third Man will have quick access to pressings of their own output, Blackwell says the decision to open the plant is a selfless act. He argues that more overall record-pressing capacity eases the pressure on plants like United Record Pressing in Nashville, which continues to press Third Man releases, and Archer—both of which are backed up and reportedly turning away customers. Also, while no plans are currently in place, Third Man hope to press more than just their own records on-site. Potentially, the plant could offer a new option for young artists and DIY labels. ‘Part of the concern in this world is that vinyl can very easily turn into an exclusionary thing,’ Blackwell says. ‘But this is going to make it easier for a little punk band to make 300 copies of a 7-inch’.”
There you go. Yet another reason why Jack White is brilliant.