The Sub Pop Story
FROM: Sub Pop Records
DATE: April 2, 2008
SUBJECT: World Domination
Uh. OK. Well, maybe that’s overstating the case. (Sub Pop has, ahem, been known to do that.) But really, did anyone expect a little label like Sub Pop to see its 20th birthday? To not only last this long, but to release five of its six best-selling CDs in the years since 2001?
“Sub Pop was the grunge label, right?” That’s right—the original home to Nirvana, Soundgarden and Mudhoney, incredible bands all. Bands whose members even, on occasion, wore flannel shirts. And 15 years after the rest of America draped itself in fashionable, grungy flannels (and then promptly took them to the thrift stores where they always belonged), Sub Pop is again one of the top music companies in the land, with artists racking up Saturday Night Live appearances and Grammy nominations.
In fact, while much of the music industry has been desperately trying to put the brakes on declining sales, Sup Pop has been giving away music by top-sellers and working with unorthodox business models.
Seriously, who’d’ve thought it? Other than the humble founders of Sub Pop, that is?
It was Soundgarden that brought Sub Pop label chiefs Bruce Pavitt and Jonathan Poneman together in Seattle in 1987.
Poneman, a music promoter and DJ on public radio station KCMU, was a quiet observer, thoughtful, analytical, Pavitt says. By contrast, Pavitt wore his passion for Northwest rock and punk on his sleeve. “There was always something on the tip of his tongue that he was enthusiastic about,” according to Mark Arm, singer and guitarist…
We STILL want your money!
Yes, I know.
I may as well be a carnival barker; inviting you, valued listener, to step-right-up! If Sub Pop has ever had a…
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