The sustainable record company…

The sustainable record company is one that respects it’s customers, but above all respects it’s artists. It must realize that as a distributor it can only survive with the artist, it is 100 per cent dependable on the artists creative input and thus should look after their sources at all cost. No by bullying and denigrating the artist, but celebrating the artists’ contribution to the fan – us.

The sustainable record company must recognise change in the industry, and rather than lower the profit margins that the actual artist takes in and bleed them dry, must evolve and accomodate the ever changing musical environment. Too few record labels are doing this…until now. The future of music is in the hands of a significantly small minority right now, but the minority is slowly gaining pace, gaining loyalty and gaining respect from bands, record distributors and the ultimate consumers of music – the fans.

Enter Rodriguez Lopez Productions and Sargent House Records.Hand in hand have these two labels concurrently crafted the future of music, the future which foreshadows a sustainable future for both artists and labels alike. Information is scarce about the label, but the bands that it supports have information spread all over the Sargent House website – something not seen so prominently before now. Here is a brief extract from an interview with Cathy Pellow (the wonderfully kind and active band manager and representative for Sargent House – seriously email her and she will respond with happiness):

So what is Sargent House all about?
Sargent House acts as both Management and Label.  It is also the sister company to Refused TV, US/THEM Group and Solid PR.  We pride ourselves on being our bands partners in their endeavors and have taken out the “Us against Them“ mentality.  We all work for the same common goal which is to make the artists we work with self sustaining. Our focus is more on the long term career development of the artist vs quick churn and burn, singles type stuff.

Source: http://www.sxsw.com/node/3404

Even though this is pretty much all that exists to explain the role Sargent House plays as a label, it is nonetheless an all encompassing fantastic attitude and approach to music today. Not to mention, the Sargent House label has a pretty schweet roster to boot:

bygones, Cast Spells, Daughters, Fang Island, Good Old War, Love You Moon, Maps & Atlases, Native, Red Fang, Red Sparowes,
Russian Circles, RX Bandits, Tera Melos, These Arms Are Snakes, This Town Needs Guns, Zach Hill, Zechs Marquise

Source: http://www.sargenthouse.com/

Sound good? I thought so. But what else are they doing to maintain such a roster for longevity and prosperity? Through their very own webstores they offer digital downloads for a donation priced fee of the buyers choice, they are revitalising vinyl with absolutely fabulous artwork and coloured vinyl packages, offering large ranges of merch and of course still offer cds for those of whom want them. Whats more is, these are all at reasonable prices, and can be shipped throughout the world.

A lot of the music world could learn a little from Sargent House records, their ethic, morality and general approach to musical distribution – because after all, without the artist there is no music…and without music there is …nothing.

Alex Stretton

Comments
2 Responses to “The sustainable record company…”
  1. Erick says:

    They also have a keen understanding of the Internets role in the future of business. Specifically social networking’s role in the personalization of the businesses. Sargent house does well with propagating it’s artist’s on Facebook, Twitter, and the former corporate king, Myspace. The “tweets” (or status updates) it sends to it’s fans are relevant and add a feeling of worth and unity to it’s fan base. This attitude plus it’s open door communication with it’s fan base will play a major role in this new paradigm for record labels. Unfortunately for me I make films, not music, and there aren’t many people in the film industry hip enough to approach film releases in a fresh manner.

  2. Alex says:

    You’re exactly right, im not too sure on the specifics but the film industry is a huge task to shift. The industry tends to get complacent when they’re making money, the thing with the record industry is that big label business is losing money BECAUSE they dont embrace the new, which is something Sargent House do and i wish them all my best in leading the way of music management and distribution.

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