Vinyl lovers rejoice! This Saturday, April 18, is Record Store Day. Every spring, our Birmingham record stores participate in the world-wide rally in support of independent record shops. Whether you’re into the crackle-and-pop of a well-worn album or the surprising fidelity of an older format, Birmingham has several opportunities to pick up some vinyl and support your locals in the process.
Seasick Records has only one Record Store Day under its belt, but it was a tremendous initiation. “Last year was insane,” says owner Daniel Drinkard. “Busy, but a lot of fun.” This weekend looks promising as well, as the shop has plenty planned for RSD.
In addition to limited releases, Seasick will have DJs from Substrate Radio spinning discs throughout the day. There will be ticket giveaways for Bannaroo, Happenin Fest, and more. Upcoming coffeehouse Satellite will brew Stumptown coffee for the early risers. Newman’s Classic Cuts, the pop-up barber shop, will be at the ready in case it’s just time to get you hair cut right now.
Good People Brewing Co. has prepared a small batch just for the event- The Black Vinyl Ale. This is a one-time only concoction with a special blend of malt, hops, and Belgian yeast. Burgers and hotdogs (of the veggie and meaty variety) will be there for the consuming, followed by Ono Ice’s shaved ice. Merch includes posters, shirts, and Good People/Seasick 45 adapters. Seasick will also premier a short documentary on the founding of the B’ham indie record shop.
In Five Points, Charlemagne Record Exchange will feature 20% off their used records. Open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., the local institution will be freshly stocked with limited releases printed for RSD. The new arrivals accompany the treasure trove’s year-round inventory of mainstays, rare finds, and lost classics. “You can find something you were waiting for, plus something you didn’t expect,” says owner Marian McKay. “That’s the fun of it. You never know what you may find.”
Open at 9 a.m., Renaissance Records will have a tremendous collection of $1 albums up for grabs. The Five Points shop will have over 300 items coming in, complemented by their selection of record players. Want to participate but don’t have a player at home? Pick up a Charlie Brown vinyl player or the crystal-clear Audio-Technica.
Owner Gary Bourgeois encourages visitors to enjoy themselves and take their time. “It’s not about just getting something and checking out,” he says. “The whole spirit of Record Store Day is supporting the local shops, enjoying them while you’re there and seeing what’s round. You make some cool finds that way.”
The Birmingham Record Store Day participants are:
Charlemagne Record Exchange: 1924 1/2 11th Avenue South Birmingham, AL 35218
Open at 8 a.m.
Renaissance Records: 2020 11th Avenue South Birmingham, AL 35205
Open at 9 p.m.
Seasick Records: 4513 5th Avenue South Birmingham, AL 35222
Open at 8 a.m.