While combing through the various booths at SXSW Interactive, I found one in particular that was intriguing. The words Record Label In A Box [RLIAB] immediately grabbed my attention for their simple yet audacious parameters. It brought to mind those “XXX for Dummies” do it yourself guides that were so popular in the early 00s before Youtube and Linda.com took over that space.
After a quick conversation with Matt Parsons the founder/CEO of Ditto (parent company to RLIAB) it became apparent that this was not your average “DIY” kit, but more of a real solution for indie artists and entrepreneurs looking to get their label structure started. They provide all the necessary steps, contracts and even a promo/pr service.
I caught up with Parsons for a quick post-show interview after all the SXSW beer and BBQ settled and the hangover passed.
Can you tell us how the Record Label In A Box came about?
RLIAB exists because it needs to. 10 years ago when me and my brother were playing in bands, we started our own label to release our music. The day after we started it we were still the same: no contacts, no infrastructure, no money, no roadmap, no mentors. 3 years ago i looked at independent labels and noticed they still had the same struggle, the same struggle labels have had for 100 years. So we invented a solution.
At a time of so much uncertainty in the music business why would someone want to start a record label?
The only uncertainty is with major labels that are so heavily invested (not always well guided) in their own infrastructure and trying to work out what sells that can pay their huge bills and keep investors happy. Independent labels starting now have the best chance ever to have success. for the first time in our history, all the avenues open to majors are available to independents. The digital landscape provides that level playing field.
What are we going to find in the box? Is it truly everything you need to get started?
The phrase 'in a box' sums up that its the complete package to start a label. Physically we give you the only tangible asset that has ever existed that PROVES you have a label. We get you started by creating your label, founding your Limited Company and giving you the infrastructure to conduct proper business. 90% of the package is intangible - online legal contract wizard, event calendar, mentoring, after-care support, loan assistance and so on.
Anything that says “In a box” kind of infers that it’s easy? How difficult is it really and about how long does it take to get a label up and running?
Your limited company will be founded within 24 hours. from there we start your record label which will take 3-4 days. in the meantime we send out your RLIAB box. As soon as you complete your sign up we give you instant access to the online system so you can start drawing up contracts, looking out for events to attend and booking your first mentor session.
What are some of the extra services you offer with RLIAB?
RLIAB is tiered so each level offers additional services. For 'extra' services i guess that could be covered with our after-care support. If 6 months down the line you want to go get a licensing deal in China, speak to us and we'll make the connections and support you. Need help touring? ask us. and so on.
How many electronic music labels have you guys helped launch? Do you have any big success stories?
Labels: French Express, Best Laid Plans Records (Rationale), Couch Records
Artists: HeroBust, Chris Malinchak, Starslinger, Zed Bias, Moon Boots, Ghost WARS and lots more.
What were some of your favorite shows / brands at this years SXSW Music and Interactive show?
Some of the micro-stands from Korea and Taiwan were amazing, some real left field thinking. Always good to see that the city of Manchester have a stand, you don't usually see that with a city.
To find out even more, watch the video below or visit their website.