For our Music Monday feature, Peter Garea at Ink Records gives a bit of insight into his indie label. He has some interesting insight into
the new paradigm musicians should give some thought and consideration.
You own Ink Records based in St. Louis. What is the history and mission
for your label?
INK was founded in 2009 as a small boutique management based record label. The real mission is to act as a ghost label in order for the artists on our roster to really be heard. At the end of the day, the music is what is important, the money will come if the caliber of your roster merits that.
Are you looking for new artists to be on your label? If so, what exactly
are you looking for?
We are always accepting new submissions! The label is non-genre specific, we are open to anything.
Where do you see the indie music business in five years?
I see the indie music scene growing but running into the issue of over saturation. There will be a ton of independent labels like INK. The key is finding a true deliverable. Money will be made from licensing and touring. Records sold will cover a small portion of that profit margin.
Of the older more traditional genres, which do you value the most?
That is a tough one. Personally, jazz.
What genres do you see having the most impact on our culture as
a whole as we move forward in this new infrastructure of indie music?
Independent music is so broad. The individualistic expression through that genre alone will allow for a cultural impact. Listen to Bob Geldof’s keynote at SXSW this year. I agree.
List the five most important things an emerging indie
can do for their career?
1. Quality is king, not content.
2. Do not oversaturate your market. Make it a treat for your fans locally.
3. Register your music for copyright and align with a PRO. This is something that a lot of up and coming bands overlook but is crucial.
4. Do not expect this to happen over night. Bands that break these days have been doing it for 3 + years on the low end.
5. If social media presence is something that you don’t feel is true to your brand, image, or music, limit the amount of channels you have. There are tasteful and creative ways to engage your fans using this technology, so eliminating it all together is something to be careful of. Your fans may very well want that sort of interaction.
What recurrent obstacles do you encounter as an indie
Mainly funding. Most angel investors and VC’s [venture capitalists] are currently interested in music tech startups as opposed to labels. Going back to the first question, that won’t change until a working deliverable is discovered. If ever.