Wilco: The Record Label (Or: I Am Trying To Not Use This Joke In A Header Ever Again)
By Jon Graef in Arts & Entertainment on Jan 27, 2011 3:40PM
Photo by Autumn de Wilde
Beer, baseball teams, festivals, sandwiches, coffee: The gents in Wilco have displayed a surprisingly strong business acumen throughout their long career. (Or at least a willingness to grant their blessing to weird stuff named after them). For their latest venture, though, they're involvement is much more direct. According to the Los Angeles Times, Wilco's forming their own record label, dBpm Records. Releases on dBpm will be distributed by Anti- Records, the eclectic imprint of Epitaph Records. (Itself a perennial favorite for little brothers everywhere just discovering punk.)
Anti- has been quite good to Chicagoans, seeing as it's the home of one-time resident Neko Case and also released soul legend Mavis Staples's latest release, You Are Not Alone. (Not too coincidentally produced by one Jeff Tweedy). In fact, it was the relationship Tweedy and Anti- cultivated while working on the Staples that lead to the idea of an additional working relationship. Read more about it here.
Wilco has had a famously tough time with traditional record labels -- something we're not going to rehash here, other than to say, "whaddup, Sam Jones?" -- so a move like this makes sense. They've been hinting about a move like this since their contract on Nonesuch was fulfilled. Good for them for following through, and best of luck. There's plenty of great Chicago talent here to be signed. (Hint, hint).