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Indie Label Roundtable – Community Radio Tapes / WarHen Records / Blue Tapes

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Community Radio Tapes

Contents

Community Radio Tapes

We’re a small cassette label focusing on minimalist rock and gloomy folk music.

Recent releases: Sea Grapes – Deadbeat Dad | Heart Eyes – Whatever It Is, Whenever You Feel Like It

 

What made you start a label?

I’ve always been inspired by DIY artists and was following a few labels already. I had been trying to get my own music released on a small label for a while, but didn’t have a whole lot of luck. But I had been supporting my friend’s’ music endeavors from Florida. Then it hit me, on my birthday at an Arcade Fire show in Denver: I should just start my own label, and support artists while giving a future platform for my own music as well. That’s basically how CRT was born. Just a sweet passion project from a revelation.

What are some of the challenges you see as a label owner?

One of the biggest challenges for a small label is balancing finances with ambition (and also time). I would say most small label owners like us have to keep up a day job to support themselves, so while I would love to release a new artist’s LP every other week, tapes cost money and sometimes we don’t sell enough to profit. Especially just starting out, it’s really straining.

What is your take on Spotify and streaming services?

I think it definitely helps get new music discovered, but it hurts the artists because the money isn’t directly going to them. It’s soft exploitation.

Is there a specific focus as far as genres or local/regional aspect of music you’re releasing?

We started out wanted gloomy folk artists from anywhere. And we stayed true to that for our first two releases but now we’re branching out into blues rock, alternative and even hip-hop at some point. We just want to be inclusive and diverse.

Do you believe that music could bring about social change?

I think music definitely has the ability to break down barriers socially. In the past, you had events like Woodstock that sort of defined the anti-war movements. And today, you see prominent artists of color as the new rock stars and everybody listens to them from all walks of life. Music has the capacity to show us individually what we can relate to, even if the song as a whole is about something else entirely.


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