Independent Label Market Glasgow
For those of you unable to make it down to London for the (sweltering) Independent Label Market in July and still sulking about the absence of the really good one we’ve had in Summerhall in Edinburgh for the last couple of years, fear not, because this fine event is returning to Scotland after all, just in Glasgow this time. And we will of course be there.
The event will take place on Saturday the 12th of October at the Barras Art and Design Centre. Having been the smallest of small fry at the London event I notice with some degree of childish sulking that we still aren’t considered significant enough to merit a mention in the press release even when the event is on our bloody doorstep, but hey ho. We will have the last of the Beer vs. Records 4-packs and the new Trips and Falls album, as well as more recent releases like NAKED and Adam Stafford and the more esoteric gems from our back catalogue.
I have to confess that the concept of the Independent Label Market makes me a little bit wary. I love going, and as a punter I think it’s a brilliant idea, but we do have to be a bit careful not to pull the rug out from under the few remaining independent record shops we have left and this kind of thing does appear to veer dangerously close to that kind of territory.
In London I don’t worry about it at all, because we struggle to get any London shops to take the slightest interest in our releases, so that stall at the market is invaluable to connect with our London fanbase. Up here, where people genuinely do buy our releases from record shops, it seems more questionable, but I don’t think the issue is as serious as it might seem for one main reason: people buy completely different stuff from me at these fairs than they do from our website or from shops.
Where generally our web-shop or physical retail will sell the most recent releases as well as a consistent trickle of stuff by our more prominent artists, at label markets the stuff people buy is much more spread out across the entire back catalogue. I go along with my iPhone and a set of headphones and, with it all laid out there in front of them, people explore all kinds of obscure old stuff in which the general public lost all interest a couple of weeks after release. We never sell a lot of any one release at these things, but what we do get is sales spread across our entire back catalogue, no matter how obscure it is or how little press it got at the time.
So it may seem like a threat to shops, and I am glad that a couple of really good Glasgow record shops are involved in this market, but even without them I don’t think what we would sell ourselves would be a direct replacement for what a shop would sell to its customers. And of course, in London, it’s just about the only retail space we have in the South, so I am just glad we’re invited, honestly.
So, meandering ramble aside, I hope to see you in Glasgow on the 12th.More: independent label market, tom waits