It’s hard to make it in the music industry these days, even if you have all the talent in the world.
You could be a master of your craft and still never get a gig or any kind of record deal just because you don’t know the right people. Unfortunately, we live in an age where connections overshadow raw ability. It’s a swift injustice to anyone who’s worked hard to make music and been denied because their parents didn’t leave a trust fund for them to buy equipment or recording time in the studio.
Despite these trying times for musicians, Spotted records has some good news.
Holding true to their motto, “We spot talent,” The record company signs artist solely based on talent and the unrefined energy an artist can put off to a crowd. Nathan Kay explains a little about his company here in our interview with him.
Can you tell our readers about your journey in the music industry and what gave you the idea to start Spotted Records?
Allow me to start by thanking you and your publication for taking the time to get to know a bit about my/our story. It’s a rare opportunity to speak to listening ears ready to take a glance at Spotted’s history.
I was focused on bringing new light to my career as a professional vocalist. Building a brand for an EDM alias as Nathan Kay was my primary agenda. This led me to working with several producers and gaining many friends through networking in the scene. Eventually, as my surroundings progressed in industry relevance, I encountered a lot of unfairness coming from labels towards artists!
I saw a lot of my friends getting screwed by several factors. A few examples: Terms of the contract (master ownership and publishing splits), the amount of time it takes to release a song from the moment it’s signed, unwanted and pressured 360 deals, etc.
I figured someone had to do something about the injustice. The talents I was surrounded by had virtually no means of gaining any sort of exposure, and lacked the funding or network needed to expand their reach.
What is your creative philosophy and vision behind the label?
Our motto pretty much says it; “We Spot Talent.”
The key vision is to provide enthusiasts with quality and unique material.
When you hear a demo what are some key indicators you look for when signing music?
Well, one thing I can say for sure is that we’re not very genre oriented. I like to consider most of our releases to be “Genre Manipulation.” The term basically means that each release we bring to market holds elements from several genres.
Going back to the basis of the question; we look for the aforementioned quality and uniqueness. If we’re digging it, it gets released.
Is there any advice you would like to give to producers who are new to sending demos to labels?
If you have anyone to give you a referral, make sure you get a proper introduction to an A&R representative. Often times producers know others who’ve previously released on a label. There’s nothing wrong with asking one of your mates for an introduction.
Furthermore, do not spam. At Spotted, we ignore anything that comes to our mailbox that’s addressed to more than just us. Do NOT put the whole industry on CC or BCC. We know, and your material will automatically be discredited. Labels enjoy exclusivity.
You recently signed an act by the name of 50/Fifty. What can you tell us about them and what can we expect from their future releases?
Oh boy, those guys are about to blow. Keep an eye out for future releases. Their sound is groovy progressive/electro, and their stage presence is incomparable.
The EDM scene has been changing rapidly over the last few years, what are your thoughts on the massive explosion in popularity that this style of music has been seeing and how do you keep up with its evolution?
Popularity is great as long as it doesn’t lead to misrepresentation. Any artist would be lying if they declined a will to reach a wider audience.
In the near future, Spotted Records will be announcing the launch of a new platform; The Spotlight.
The key idea here is to provide a new revenue stream for artists releasing on the label, while simultaneously obtaining a loyal fan base. More information will soon be divulged so keep an eye out for announcements by connecting with Spotted Records on social media.