Label Profile: Faith And Hope

An evening of overindulgence can often end with drunken boasts, flights of fancy and grandiose business plans for global domination. But for frustrated musician Neil Claxton, his alcohol-fuelled rant with a friend about the state of the music business struck such a chord that, in the cold light of day, he phoned his friend David Wood with a proposition.

Label Profile: President Records

The history of President Records, one of the first independent labels in the UK, is inextricably linked to that of music publisher Edward Kassner. Born in Austria to Jewish parents in 1920, Edward dreamed of becoming a composer but his orchestral aspirations were cut short when Hitler annexed Austria.

“He was tipped off by his friends that they were rounding up Jewish boys,” says David Kassner, Edward’s eldest son and now MD of President. “He fled through Belgium and got caught trying to cross the border at Aachen twice. On the third occasion a German soldier caught him but let him go saying that he hadn’t signed up to shoot young boys.”

Label Profile: Cherry Red

“When we started in 1978, what Cherry Red prided itself on was its diversity,” says Iain McNay, Cherry Red’s founder and chairman. “Labels such as Factory Records and Rough Trade had a certain image, but you couldn’t pin us down musically – we were a bit all over the place.”

As Cherry Red (named after a track from the Groundhogs’ album, Split) celebrates its 30th birthday this year, it’s a philosophy that has served it well. Not only has its music covered many a genre, but the business model has adapted over time. The Cherry Red empire now spans 12 sub-labels putting out a variety of music – and McNay is always open to more.

Label Profile: Independiente

Independiente’s artistic and commercial breakthrough came remarkably quickly. Riding the Britpop wave, Travis’s 1999 release The Man Who was soon sitting in one in eight homes in the UK, opening the way for Coldplay and Snow Patrol.

Label profile: Skint Records

“Fuse dance and rock.” These historic words were to be the launch pad for Skint Records. They were given as a recommendation to Norman Cook - aka Fatboy Slim - by Damian Harris, one of Skint’s founders who knew Cook from their days working in a Brighton record shop.

At the time Harris was working at Loaded Records, Cook was deejaying in Brighton.

Label Profile: Union Square Music

In the eight years since Union Square Music was founded it has released more than 700 reissue and compilation albums. And although some people turn their noses up at unoriginal recordings, USM has achieved success in both sales and credibility.

Label Profile: Jeepster

"You could describe us as a patron of the arts rather than a label," says Stef D'Andrea, the co-founder and MD of Jeepster. "We're in this for the experience."

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