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Label Interview: Rare Basic Recordings

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How did you come to do what you do? When did the first idea of creating the label came out?

Hello! Thanks for having me. It all began in the late 2013, I had friend of which he was a hip hop & an electronic producer. I was always fascinated of how he creates a beat from his personal computer, he made it look really simple and I would usually visit his home studio just to watch & listen to his craft. I ended up being inspired to do the same…to make music. He eventually gave me his copy of his DAW named ‘Propellerhead Reason’. The DAW was so confusing of course however I ended up learning everything-day by day on my own, patience had to practiced. It took me almost 4 years of hard work, dedication & patience to put out my first official release under South African Electronic Label ‘Rearl Ltd’ in 2017. The idea of owning a label was just a constant thought. I realized most electronic labels were evolving into a different sound and my style of production didn’t really fit into their catalog. Since we are in a midst of Covid, I had so much time on my hands I used it so wisely and that’s when I decided to plan & I managed establish my imprint ‘Rare Basic Recordings’’ on the day 03 October 2020, A sweet home for my own production and for electronic bedroom producers.

Some statistics, since the label was created, how many releases, how many vinyls and how many packages/parcels have you made/send?

One statistic I’d really point out is when the label surpassed 3000 thousand plays on our Bandcamp store just after 3 months of its birth. We have 2 releases on our catalog, the first release is by myself Rick Koen and the second stunning release is by the talented American producer Mintiest. We haven’t pressed any vinyls yet, but definitely we going to press our music in the near future. I am planning to put out the label merchandise on our Bandcamp store real soon, so keep your eyes peeled!

From which country do most of your buyers come from?

Majority of the listeners reside in Portugal.

What is the release of which you are most proud of?

That is quite difficult to tell, I can’t really pick out just one release only because I am extremely proud with every release on the Rare Basic catalog.

Can you describe to us what a typical day at the office means to you?

Firstly what I do is check my emails, practice my writing skills and listen to demos sent by other artists, that’s the most essential task I do at the office.

Who’s in your team? Are you a music producer or Dj?

Yes, I am both a music producer & dj. I only started being a dj in the late 2017, so yeah I’ve got quite an experience playing out to the people. My team? It’s just me Rick Koen,
I mostly handle everything, the A&R, the album artworks, the marketing and the bookkeeping too. My friends Jef Black[Underground Section] & Gareth MKD[Rearl Ltd] are kind enough to assist me with the mastering of the tracks as I’m still learning to do it on my own as well.

Which distribution channels do you use?

Beatrising, from Germany. They’re so kind to newly formed labels.

Did you use YouTube and how strong/weak the impact?

Yes, YouTube is a good platform to use when your imprint is still brand new and it works well when you’re looking a music distributor, I think it’s always wise to have content on YouTube besides other platforms.

Have you ever helped yourself with buying clicks & plays on SoundCloud?

No, I am satiated that all our followers are authentic, I honestly find it a way of cheating your craft just to get more plays.

Where do you find hungry and ambitious Artists?

I usually discover them on SoundCloud, there’s a huge number of producers that put out quality music on that platform, that’s how I actually explored and discovered the talented American artist, Mintiest.

What impact does streaming with Spotify have on the economic situation of an indie label?

In the modern era we live in, people prefer to stream their music rather than buying the music, streaming is a good way to reach more audience for your music of course. We really could complain about how the peanuts that are given out for streams. I prefer that if you like the artist’s music, express your real support by purchasing their music.

When you look for new music to sign what are the key elements and factors you are looking for, aside from it being a great track obviously?

A strong positive relationship with the artist, having a good communication and less misunderstandings.

How would you describe the style and and vision of your label?

Deep, Basic & Rare Music.

What are some sites or apps that you use to listen/find new tracks?

I listen & shop at Beatport, Bandcamp, SoundCloud and sometimes Traxsource. In that order.

For producers out there sending in their demos via emails, what are some tips you would give them on professionally sending in their track to you?

I’m very uncompromisng when it comes to demos, firstly the music must be at least be produced for my label, and not for others. I think it’s also vital for me that the artist had made some research of my label and the style of our sound. We have a standard procedure they need to follow, a simple private SoundCloud/Dropbox link to their 3-4 tracks or less.

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