Kaisen Records is a house music label based out of London founded in 2015. According to their bio, they are “chasing the perfect vibe” and with growing stable of quality releases since their inception, we are happy to chase with them. The label is undergoing a slight shift in direction sonically, expanding their sound. We caught up with promotions and marketing manager Benjamin Gibson to learn a bit more about the label, their change in sound, how he got into the music business, some advice on how to get signed as an artist and more.
1. What is your role at Kaisen Records?
I’m the marketing manager at Kaisen. I also do a little graphic design and a few other bits!
2. How did you get into the music business?
Music was always a big part of my life as I travelled quite a lot in my early twenties. When I came to London and had a base for the first time in a while I was able to give 100% focus on music. That’s when I found Simo, the managing director at Kaisen. We had a few interviews and realized we had a shared vision for Kaisen, and we’re now having fun working to make that vision a reality.
3. What is the most challenging thing about your job?
I’d probably say having to prioritize our activities at Kaisen, and stopping yourself from working all night long. We have so many exciting projects and ideas that I want to work on all at the same time, but then I take a breath and organize myself as each project needs a certain amount of attention to make it a success and you can’t do that if you’re doing a million things at once.
4. What other jobs have you had in the music business?
Well I’m also a DJ. Which is amazing as I get to work with music day and night. I play a good few times a month in London playing a really wide variety of music with good friends of mine. This obviously goes hand in hand with my ‘real job’ as I pick up little tips and tricks on music marketing just by getting involved with other people in the scene.
5. Beyond networking and luck, how would you recommend somebody get a gig in the business?
Creating a online presence is huge now. Being able to showcase yourself online is key to getting your sound out there as well as interacting with likeminded people online. I know Bicep were pretty much formed from Andy and Matt sharing tunes in a Facebook group! Also, taking your chances. If you get one shot at a gig make sure it’s the best one you’ve ever done, because you never know who could be listening and what it could lead to. Of course you can always submit a demo to us at Kaisen too at email@example.com!
6. What went into the decision to shift directions for the label?
Well we’ve been doing funky/jackin’ house for over a year now, and we love it. But recently we've wanted to expand our releases so we can include dance music from a variety of backgrounds. As artists we’ve been playing more and more tech house recently and really loving it, so we thought - why not release it? It’s also allowing us to spread our A&R throughout the team, as we’re going for releases that we as a team really love at the minute.
7. What are the most important things you look for when signing a song or an artist?
When we sign a song or an artist we seek true talent, artists with personality that they can pass on through their music. Their songs must be original and have solid ideas and direction behind them. The problem is today it's very difficult to be original, everyone copies each other and this makes it difficult for the artists (the correct ones) to emerge. We believe in good quality music, as does everyone! Only this can help an artist to have a long fruitful career in this business, not the common few years we see in the industry now.
8. What do you focus on when marketing a release?
After the actual quality of the song it’s getting it to the right people and platforms first and foremost. Whether that’s the DJ’s we want playing the release or the titles we want talking about it. Also, artwork is a big thing for me, nothing better than marketing content / artwork that suits the track down to the ground.
9. If you weren’t in music, what would you be doing?
Well I was a football coach and a teacher in a few different countries, but I couldn’t handle it in the UK. The kids are too annoying. So I’d probably be off doing that somewhere else ha.