how hardly art was created ? and how you became general manager of this label ?
the seed for Hardly Art was planted in late 2006, though the label became more of a reality and was officially announced in early 2007. Sub Pop had tossed around the idea of starting a new label a few times before, with the reasoning being that there was an outlet needed for smaller bands that may not necessarily make sense on Sub Pop, but still had fans at the label. They were also interested in trying out a business model that was different from their own. All of that meant that I lucked out, as I had been working in the publicity department of Sub Pop at the time, and they came to me with the opportunity to switch gears and run Hardly Art instead. When that happened, the label didn’t yet have a name, let alone a website.
What is a typical day at hardly art ?
It really depends on the day — for me personally, there is a fair amount of emailing, updating the website, talking with bands, occasionally running marketing and A&R meetings, ordering promo materials, laying out either artwork or one-sheets, and generally running around. There are only 3-4 people in our office on any given day, though we’re located within the larger Sub Pop offices. We all handle a fair amount of artist and marketing obligations.
how do you find new bands for the label ?
We’re always on the hunt for new talent, though a little less frequently now that our roster has filled out and stayed active. Sometimes we hear of and check out a new band locally, sometimes it’s a recommendation from a friend, and often it’s through the recommendation of another artist.
how do you work with bands and in which area do you help ?
Our relationship with every band is different, though I like to think we’re a pretty comprehensive resource. We take care of everything concerning their record and the marketing of it, and generally try to help when it comes to touring, making videos, et cetera. Our goal is always to help our bands make the record they want to, and make sure it’s seen/heard by a larger audience.
do you have dreams for hardly art ?
Always. It continues to grow and change every year.
What do you think of the current music scene and the music business? how will you see the future of labels and what is your opinion of the crowdfunding option ?
The current scene is more democratic than before and will continue down that road. There are so many new ways to release music and access it without the assistance of labels — which on the one hand is great, and on the other creates a complete glut of options when it comes to what to listen to and how to go about finding/obtaining it. My personal opinion is that crowdfunding makes sense when you have absolutely no other means to back something that you genuinely believe should exist.
Which bands do you like ?
This is an impossible question — too many to list. Some all-timers would be Jason Molina/Songs: Ohia, Dirty Three, Elliott Smith, Wipers, Rites of Spring, Minutemen, Cat Power, Irma Thomas, Slint, The Cure. Newer favorites are Trust, The National, Protomartyr, Terry Malts, The Babies, Andy Stott, Grouper, Perfume Genius, Shabazz Palaces, Grass Widow, Dirty Beaches. And there are so many great bands in Seattle right now — Wimps, Tacocat, Pony Time, Stickers, Grave Babies, S, Childbirth, La Luz, Chastity Belt… the list goes on.
What is the best show you attented ?
There have been many, but Stars of the Lid played an incredible set at the Triple Door a few years ago — their first-ever Seattle show — that notably changed my life.
last question sarah , if you can do a five track music playlist of your life what you going to put on them ?
1. Wipers – Wait a Minute
2. Songs: Ohia – Didn’t it Rain
3. Mogwai – Burn Girl Prom Queen
4. Gun Club – Mother of Earth
5. The Au Pairs – It’s Obvious
all info of this wonderful label at : hardlyart
photo credit : Stacy Peck