Q: So, you want to start a record label?
A: YES, because I hate my money and want to do something that’ll be fun.
In 2007, my friends Ryan McManemin and Matt “sasquatch” Belknap started a comedy record label. Jen Kirkman and I were the first two releases. I had only been doing comedy for a handful of years and wasn’t anywhere close to thinking I was allowed to put out any sort of “comedy album” (although Jen’s “Self Help” is a classic and needed to be released). But, having been a part of Scott Aukerman and BJ Porters “Mbar/Comedy Death Ray” scene I had become friends with Ryan, as we were both punk rock kids that were now at comedy shows all the time. I had always thought it would be neat to treat my comedy as if it were a band. By making buttons, stickers, and of course, putting out a 7” record. The 7” record is usually a punk/indie bands first release, and I never got to a point with any of my bands to do it. So, when Ryan asked me if I was interested in doing exactly that, I couldn’t say no.
Patton Oswalt, who I describe as the current comedy scene’s combined Fugazi/Sonic Youth/Black Flag (not only that he helped pave a way, but paved it with the added intent on helping those around him), brought up the notion that people will start to follow comics like they follow musicians. In the way that you’ll get a bands early single, and then see them develop and become better musicians/songwriters. He even, with Chunklet’s Henry Owings, put out a split with The Melvins.
So if that then what? Well, I was tired of saying “Somebody should…” or “Wouldn’t it be cool if…”
So, with AST RECORDS I am now starting my own imprint label:
LITERALLY FIGURATIVE RECORDS
I am gonna put out the stuff I like in the hopes that other people will too. Also, to maybe shed some light on some comics and bands that I really dig that people may not know about. This is a comedy label, this is a music label, this is probably some weird vanity project. Fuck it, though.
What’s in store for releases?
- -Vinyl of NICK YOUSSEF’S DEBUT ALBUM “STOP NOT OWNING THIS”
- -THE DEBUT 7” RECORD OF ONE OF MY FAVORITE NEW LA COMEDIANS “PAIGE WELDON”
- -The first LP from the legendary MATT DWYER
And this is the fun one, a split 7” series with a comic on one side and band they are friends with on the other called:
THE MUTUAL APPRECIATION SOCIETY!
Releases in this continuing series to include…
- Sean O’connor / Upset
- Matt Mira / Jenny Owen Youngs
- Alex Hooper / FARTBARF
- Wil Wheaton / Nerf Herder
- Kyle Clark / Chris Ferren (from Fake Problems)
- Jonah Ray (that’s me!) / Mikal Cronin
- Powerviolence / Powerviolence
- Rhea Butcher / G.S. Schray
And more as we go a long, but l don’t want to get too ahead of myself.
All this will be done under the guidance of Ryan and Matt from AST RECORDS as well as be distributed by them.
I don’t know if this will be good, I DO know that it will be fun.