I Create Birmingham: Daniel Drinkard

“It’s not all about making money. As a local business, I feel like it’s your duty to give back to the community that supports you”

Name: Daniel Drinkard
Occupation: Owner of Seasick Records

1. Seasick feels as much like a community space as record store. Was that an intentional goal and, if so, what were your strategies to achieve it?
It was definitely intentional. If you’ve ever seen the movie High Fidelity you know record stores can be kind of intimidating. I wanted people to feel welcome when they came in the store and not be afraid to ask questions. A big part of making the store feel like a community is just by interacting with people that walk through our door. We also try to host community events and benefits. While we are a for profit business, it’s not all about making money. As a local business, I feel like it’s your duty to give back to the community that supports you.

2. You recently attended a conference for independent record storeowners. What were your big takeaways?
I think we were the youngest store in attendance at the conference so I was really trying to soak up anything I could. The biggest takeaway was the relationships that were built with our peers, distributors, labels, and other people in the industry. I know there’s still more I can learn so I’ll continue to solidify those relationships and learn from others who have been in the industry for a long time.

3. You were an early participant in CO.STARTERS. In what ways do you think the program made an impact on your business development?
CO.STARTERS was huge for me! I have no formal business training and made a lot of mistakes early on. CO.STARTERS helped me work out the kinks and figured out how to make the business profitable. I would highly recommend it to anyone who has a business idea or even if you have an existing business.

4. Seasick is very supportive of the local music scene here in Birmingham. How can other business and individuals contribute to its success?
We have so many great bands in this town and they all need our support to thrive. Go see them play, buy their records, wear their shirts, etc.

5. What can we look for at Seasick in the near future?
We are a month away from our three-year anniversary. I can only hope that our growth from our first three years is replicated in the next three years. We’ll have more shelves for more records and CDs in the next few weeks. We have some really fun events coming up to close out the year so keep your eyes peeled.