Sub Pop


News from 6/2007

MON, JUN 11, 2007 at 4:48 AM

Jaimi C Won’t Give Out Financial Details So Don[

Welcome back to People Who Work Here where each week we meet a new Sub Pop employee. This week’s interview is with Jaimi C, our accountant lady. She pays the bills and the employees and she’s also the person who is responsible for setting up those terrible visits with the insurance lady who tells you how rude it is when you die without proper life insurance at the beginning of every year. Jaimi is really, really nice and I often try to goad her into talking shit about coworkers but she never ever does it. What’s with that? Let’s meet Jaimi.

L: What’s the first live show you ever attended? Did you flash your boobs?
J: The very first live show that I can remember was Barry Manilow with my best friend and both of our moms when I was about 8. I don’t think I had boobs to flash, but if I did, I would definitely have been grounded. [Your mom is such a prude. –ed.] My first rock show was either Van Halen or Def Leppard. My brother and I skipped school and stood in line for hours so that we could be right up in front!
L: You were a rocker chick/bad girl in high school, or so I’ve gathered from our lunchtime discussions. Please tell me what you wore to school on a typical day.
J: I think that you have me mixed up with someone else! I guess that you could have called me a rocker chick in middle school, but once I discovered Prince, Depeche Mode, and The Cure, my rocker days were over for a while. I wore black, black, and more black — and pointy Fluevog shoes.
L: Did you smoke cigarettes?
J: Yes, not many though.[Oh right you were goth. Cloves? –ed.]
L: Did you drink?
J: Of course.
L: How old were you when you lost your virginity?
J: 16 or 17 [Well which is it? Seventeen is reasonable but sixteen is just slutty. J/K -ed.]
L: Was your hair feathered?
J: Feathering was long gone by the time I was in high school! My hair was gigantic and teased and I probably used a bottle of Aqua-net every day. [Sick! –ed.]
L: Was your boyfriend’s hair feathered?
J: No! In my junior year, I had a 22 year-old boyfriend who looked like Robert Smith. My parents were horrified, but I thought he was SO hot. [This is the dude you were humping, I take it. –ed.]
L: Did you fight?
J: No – despite my weird hair, I still got along with most people.
L: Did you ever fail a class?
J: No. I had a hard time with geometry, but I passed somehow.
L: What was your favorite band in high school? What is your favorite band now?
J: My favorite band in high school was The Cure. Recently, I’ve been listening to Arcade Fire, TV on the Radio, and Handsome Furs.
L: Do you play an instrument? If so tell me what it is and stuff and if not tell me what you’d play if you could.
J: No – I don’t play an instrument. I guess that I’d play keyboards if I did. I took piano lessons as a kid, and I know stuff like Chopsticks and the Jaws theme song…..I’m sure that I could easily catch up with real musicians. Kidding!!
L: How’s having a kid?
J: Amazing! I had a really, really fun pre-kid life, but I wouldn’t trade back to that old life now for anything in the world. My son Spencer is one of the coolest people I’ve ever known. I’m really lucky. [But what if he grows up to be a total butthole? -ed.]
L: Where did you work before you worked at Sub Pop? Tell me about it.
J: I worked at a place called Triton PCS. It is a wireless phone company that has a corporate office located near Philadelphia. I was a Revenue Assurance Manager, which is a confusing title even for people in the wireless industry. Basically, I did a lot of charts and graphs that showed the executive-types how they could make more money. It was the polar opposite of Sub Pop in so many ways. I really liked it a lot then, but now I think I’d have a hard time with it.
L: You get organic vegetables delivered to you door. What is your favorite vegetable and favorite fruit? Why? What’s your least favorite and why?
J: My favorite vegetable is broccoli and my favorite fruit is raspberries – because they are both delicious! My least favorites are brussels sprouts and papaya, just because I don’t like them. [That’s really mature, Jaimi. –ed] I started doing the organic and label-reading thing when I discovered that my son was allergic to MSG. Once I started reading labels I realized how much chemical junk we all eat every day.
L: What did you want to be when you were a kid?
J: In elementary school I wanted to be a gymnast. In high school I wanted to do international marketing, because I really love to travel. I’m not really sure how I ended up working with money.
L: How much money does Jonathan make per paycheck?
J: More than you or me. [Duh. –ed]
L: How much money does Sub Pop have in the bank?
J: It changes every day! [What a cop out! -ed.]
L: Can I have a loan?
J: I’m sure that the bank would be so psyched to give you one.
L: Am I annoying you?
J: No way! I’ll bet that these non-answers to your financial questions are annoying YOU though! [Yes.Yes they are. –ed.]
L: Okay, no really, how much money do you make?
J: Less than Jonathan. [You are driving me crazy!!!! -ed]


Posted by Lacey Swain

MON, JUN 11, 2007 at 4:48 AM

Jaimi C Won’t Give Out Financial Details So Don’t Even Ask

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Welcome back to People Who Work Here where each week we meet a new Sub Pop employee. This week’s interview is with Jaimi C, our accountant lady. She pays the bills and the employees and she’s also the person who is responsible for setting up those terrible yearly visits with the insurance lady who tells you how rude it is when you die without proper life insurance. Jaimi is really, really nice and I often try to goad her into talking shit about coworkers but she never ever does it. What’s with that? Let’s meet Jaimi.

L: What’s the first live show you ever attended? Did you flash your boobs?
J: The very first live show that I can remember was Barry Manilow with my best friend and both of our moms when I was about 8. I don’t think I had boobs to flash, but if I did, I would definitely have been grounded. [Your mom is such a prude. –ed.] My first rock show was either Van Halen or Def Leppard. My brother and I skipped school and stood in line for hours so that we could be right up in front!
L: You were a rocker chick/bad girl in high school, or so I’ve gathered from our lunchtime discussions. Please tell me what you wore to school on a typical day.
J: I think that you have me mixed up with someone else! I guess that you could have called me a rocker chick in middle school, but once I discovered Prince, Depeche Mode, and The Cure, my rocker days were over for a while. I wore black, black, and more black — and pointy Fluevog shoes.
L: Did you smoke cigarettes?
J: Yes, not many though.[Oh right you were goth. Cloves? –ed.]
L: Did you drink?
J: Of course.
L: How old were you when you lost your virginity?
J: 16 or 17 [Well which is it? Seventeen is reasonable but sixteen is just slutty. J/K -ed.]
L: Was your hair feathered?
J: Feathering was long gone by the time I was in high school! My hair was gigantic and teased and I probably used a bottle of Aqua-net every day. [Sick! –ed.]
L: Was your boyfriend’s hair feathered?
J: No! In my junior year, I had a 22 year-old boyfriend who looked like Robert Smith. My parents were horrified, but I thought he was SO hot. [This is the dude you were humping, I take it. –ed.]
L: Did you fight?
J: No – despite my weird hair, I still got along with most people.
L: Did you ever fail a class?
J: No. I had a hard time with geometry, but I passed somehow.
L: What was your favorite band in high school? What is your favorite band now?
J: My favorite band in high school was The Cure. Recently, I’ve been listening to Arcade Fire, TV on the Radio, and Handsome Furs.
L: Do you play an instrument? If so tell me what it is and stuff and if not tell me what you’d play if you could.
J: No – I don’t play an instrument. I guess that I’d play keyboards if I did. I took piano lessons as a kid, and I know stuff like Chopsticks and the Jaws theme song…..I’m sure that I could easily catch up with real musicians. Kidding!!
L: How’s having a kid?
J: Amazing! I had a really, really fun pre-kid life, but I wouldn’t trade back to that old life now for anything in the world. My son Spencer is one of the coolest people I’ve ever known. I’m really lucky. [But what if he grows up to be a total butthole? -ed.]
L: Where did you work before you worked at Sub Pop? Tell me about it.
J: I worked at a place called Triton PCS. It is a wireless phone company that has a corporate office located near Philadelphia. I was a Revenue Assurance Manager, which is a confusing title even for people in the wireless industry. Basically, I did a lot of charts and graphs that showed the executive-types how they could make more money. {God, that sounds boring. -ed.] It was the polar opposite of Sub Pop in so many ways. I really liked it a lot then, but now I think I’d have a hard time with it.
L: You get organic vegetables delivered to you door. What is your favorite vegetable and favorite fruit? Why? What’s your least favorite and why?
J: My favorite vegetable is broccoli and my favorite fruit is raspberries – because they are both delicious! My least favorites are brussels sprouts and papaya, just because I don’t like them. [That’s really mature, Jaimi. –ed] I started doing the organic and label-reading thing when I discovered that my son was allergic to MSG. Once I started reading labels I realized how much chemical junk we all eat every day.
L: What did you want to be when you were a kid?
J: In elementary school I wanted to be a gymnast. In high school I wanted to do international marketing, because I really love to travel. I’m not really sure how I ended up working with money.
L: How much money does Jonathan make per paycheck?
J: More than you or me. [Duh. –ed]
L: How much money does Sub Pop have in the bank?
J: It changes every day! [What a cop out! -ed.]
L: Can I have a loan?
J: I’m sure that the bank would be so psyched to give you one.
L: Am I annoying you?
J: No way! I’ll bet that these non-answers to your financial questions are annoying YOU though! [Yes.Yes they are. –ed.]
L: Okay, no really, how much money do you make?
J: Less than Jonathan. [You are driving me crazy!!!! -ed]


Posted by Lacey Swain

WED, JUN 27, 2007 at 10:44 AM

I totally forgot to ask Stuart Meyer about the Jack In the Box Incident!

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People Who Work Here is proud to bring you one of Sub Pop’s finest and longest-standing employees-–Stuart Meyer. I can say without hesitation that out of everyone here in the office Stuart gets the most shit, and I applaud his ability to keep cool while under tremendous pressure. For instance, when I yelled out over my desk, “How long has Stuart worked here?” I got several responses: “You mean how long has he been EMPLOYED here?” “About 10:30 to 3:00 today!” “Stuart Meyer, 1998-2007: 5 years of hard work!” This kind of shit rolls off his back with enviable ease, and only recently did I realize that because he spends so much time worrying about getting fat, nothing else gets in. Not only that, but Stuart’s dangerous obsession with impending obesity has so impaired his ability to construct a full sentence that this interview would be almost totally unintelligible, were it not for my incredible editing skills. Stuart cracks me up because he talks a lot about being both gay and Jewish but often he will just say “my people,” and I’m never quite sure which group he’s talking about. I mean, if it’s about bagels or poppers I have an idea, but sometimes he’ll throw me a curveball like “my people like good toilet paper,” and then it could go either way. Let’s meet Stuart!

L:Tell me about your tumultuous relationship with Paula Abdul. How do you know her? What is your favorite song by her? Could she teach me to dance?
S: I met Paula when I worked at Billboard in the late 80’s—1988, I believe. She had just released her first album and it was kind of a dud. Through choreographing Coming to America [Five Stars! –ed.] we had mutual friends at Billboard. Anyways, I worked in the chart dept and had access to the Top 100 singles charts before anyone in the biz, so when “Straight Up” broke out as her first hit I was telling her she was #1 before Virgin Records, her label. From there, we became friends and I stayed with her when I visited LA and I stayed friendly with her through her marriage to Emilio Estevez (I went to both the wedding and the premiere of “The Mighty Ducks”!). My fave song by her…probably “Straight Up”. It’s a pretty perfect pop song although “Cold Hearted” is a close 2nd. She could probably teach anyone to dance—she really is pretty good at that. [I like how you cleverly leave the Snake part off of “Cold Hearted Snake” so you can really drive home the intense friendly relationship that you and Paula have. Or should I say “Labdool” like you are always calling her around the office? –ed]
L: When did you come out of the closet? How did your family handle it? Didn’t your relationship with Paula tip them off?
S: I came late to that party—1994…I was almost 30! Everyone was cool but Mom, not so much at first. I think she’s dealing with it okay now. Once she realized genetics played a a part – I had a gay cousin out here in Seattle – she knew it most likely wasn’t how she raised me or anything. I would think my Donna Summer and ABBA album collections would have been the tip-off. I could mention other artists, but, I’ll save myself the embarrassment. [Oh it’s much too late for that, my friend. –ed.]
L: Woah—let’s go over this genetics part. Elaborate, please. Did you straight up tell her or did she just figure it out or what?
S: She figured since there were other gays in the bloodline that it was not something I chose to be. [She sounds like a remarkably tolerant and educated woman! –ed.] I straight up told everyone I knew within a week, Nov 1994. Mom and Dad were the last to know that week. [You like how I keep going back to the “straight up” / Paula Abdul thing? Good, right? ed.]
L: Did you ever make out with a girl? Tell me all about it.
S: I made out with a girl in college and it wasn’t to my liking. Could’ve just been the girl. She was no prize. [God, I hope she’s reading this. –ed.]
L: Do you think your life would’ve been easier if you were straight?
S: I have no idea…probably not. My life hasn’t been rough, truth be told!
L: You are the A+R rep of the Shins – which one is your favorite? Why?
S: Haha. Nice one, Swain. They’re all special in their own way. I probably have had most contact with James, just by nature of him being the de facto leader of the band for all this time. And, just as an aside, “New Slang” gave me chills for many years, no matter how many times I heard it. It was really satisfying to see that song become popular. [Boner Time! –ed.]
L: Please run me through a typical day in Stuart’s life. Don’t forget the part where you call in late, okay?
S: Another nice one, Swain. I wake up around 7:30 and waste time before heading to work
-I’m not proud of that. It causes me more stress than almost anything in my life, my being late. [Boo hoo. –ed] After work, I tend to waste more time—futzing with my DVR, computer, I-Tunes. I have a new house, so that’s taking up a lot of my time. [Brace yourself, reader—this next sentence is a real tear jerker. –ed] I basically accomplish nothing in my spare time, and most of my accomplishments are when I’m at work (as hard as that is for some of my co-workers to believe). Oh yeah, I also tend to drive my boyfriend crazy and stress him out too.
L: What is your all time favorite musical act? (You can only pick one!) Movie? Actress? Actor? Gay icon? [Note—I did NOT edit the following response. Here’s a taste of how Stuy’s mind works…. –ed]
S: Oh geez. Probably Blondie. How about my top 3 fave albums, in no particular order:
Parallel Lines, Pretenders first one, Dusty In Memphis. What’s Up, Doc is probably my fave movie…close 2nd is Annie Hall or Manhattan. Don’t really have a fave actress or actor…love Diane Keaton in Woody Allen flicks though. Gay Icon – ha. Either Madonna or Babara. But the Barbra is more from us both being a New York Jews. I once stood behind her son at a gay bar. I always figured if I could date him, my mother might not mind the whole gay thing. She’d be able to tell her friends.
L: Who is your best office friend? Why?
S: I guess whomever is listening to me blather on about whatever with the most patience at any give time. Megan? I watch her dog when she’s out of town and she probably listens to me more than anyone. [Do you give her a choice? –ed]
L: When did you finally decide to like me? Do you think that we are too similar? DO you like me?
S: I liked you from the get-go, Swain. I give the hardest time to the people I like best. Awwww… [That’s sweet! I hated you for about a whole year! -ed.]
L: Explain once and for all what your job is here. What job would you rather do?
S: I have 3 jobs: I commission videos, which, is an ebb or flow type of deal…sometimes busy, more often not. I take care of our production and manufacturing by dealing mainly with our local printer, our manufacturing plant in Olyphant, PA and our vinyl pressing plant in California, and, I handle A&R for The Shins, Iron & Wine, Wolf Parade, Handsome Furs, Death Vessel and a new kid we just signed, Daniel Moore. What job here I’d rather do? I’m happy doing what I’m doing. The A&R stuff is the most fun.
L: Where did you work before here? How was it? What was your first job? Did you ever scoop icecream? I can picture that for some reason…
S: Prior to here, I worked at Tower Records. Before that, Epic Records in New York, Atco/Atlantic in New York, Billboard, Manhattan Savings Bank in Scarsdale, NY, Pathmark Supermarket and Caldor Dept Store in Yonkers, NY. I never scooped ice cream, except maybe at Caldor?
L: What would you say is you best physical attribute.
My hair. I’m psyched I have it and happy that I probably always will. My Dad’s 80 and still has a full head of silver/white hair. [I have to admit, he has great fucking hair. –ed.]
S: What do you like to eat for lunch? What’s your favorite cocktail? Sweet or salty?
L: I recently have become pretty fond of the sandwiches and salads at the bakery downstairs. They have a great white bean spread/garlic/smoked mozzarella sandwich which they need to have every day of the week. Most of their other sandwiches have an aioli or mayo and I hate white creamy things (sour cream, mayo, cream cheese, cottage cheese) [It’s too easy so I’m not even going to do it. –ed]. Absolut Mandarin and Soda is my favorite drink, probably, and I prefer salty.
L: What do you think is the most important issue facing Americans today?
S: Undoing the damage that Bush has done, domestically and internationally. He’s worse than anyone thought he could possibly be. Also, healthcare!! That’s a good answer, right?
L: And finally, what are your 3 favorite records on Sub Pop? {Again, this answer is unedited. –ed.]
S: Overcome By Happiness – Pernice Brothers always sticks out for me and I have good memories of Bakesale in the mid ‘90’s. Wolf Parade – Apologies The Shins (can’t pick one…they each have their charm). And, I think the new Iron & Wine is gonna be a contender in the long run. Sam has one of the best voices out there right now. I love a classic voice. [And I love an actual sentence! –ed.]


Posted by Lacey Swain

THU, JUN 14, 2007 at 11:27 AM

Please welcome The Go! Team!

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Despite the sort of premature exclamation in their name that might cause some of you to think we’ve just signed The Go again (we haven’t), we at Sub Pop Records are terrifically pleased to announce that we will be working with Brighton, England’s The Go! Team!

The genre-defying, multinational, party-starting 6-piece will be releasing their second album, Proof of Youth, through a dizzying fleet of record labels around the world this fall. And here in these United States, on September 11, 2007, Sub Pop will have the honor.

This summer, Memphis Industries, the band’s UK label, will be putting out two singles leading up the release of the album: “Grip Like a Vice” on July 2nd and “Doing It Right” on September 3rd.

We’ll post more info on The Go! Team and Proof of Youth as we have it. In the meantime…

The Go! Team’s website
Their Myspace page
And, a brief documentary about the band

Alright!


Posted by Chris Jacobs

FRI, JUN 15, 2007 at 8:07 AM

Tony K lives in West Seattle and I’ll gladly give you his address

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Today’s People Who Work Here is a big treat for all you kids with big dreams about breaking into the biz and striking musical oil. Tony K is the Head of A&R at Sub Pop Records and he is a wealth of information and full of crazy opinions about the future of music but he does not, as you might expect, wear hair gel or leave all his top buttons undone. Tony does not have high powered lunches with movers and shakers, he does not party all night at exclusive clubs, and he rarely wines and dines. In fact, until very recently Tony drove the shittiest Ford Escort hatchback I’ve ever seen but he’s finally upgraded to a used Outback with a leaky sunroof. He’s a stand up guy with a heart of gold and eyes of steel — Let’s meet Tony!

L: You’ve signed some of Sub Pop’s best selling musical acts – tell me a little about your, ahem, “process”. What are you looking for in a new signee?
T: Man… I don’t think I’m looking for anything in particular really. Every band that I’ve been fortunate enough to work with has been pretty different. Early on in my role as a&r guy here I think that I kind of got off on intentionally making the roster of bands I was responsible for as diverse as possible. I thought it was cool to work with Pleasure Forever, Red House Painters and David Cross all at the same time. I remember thinking of it as casting a movie with lots of different characters. [You are like the Orson Welles of the music business. Or maybe more like the Howard Hughes? -ed] That strategy had the benefit of making each project a totally unique challenge. Nowadays I don’t pay attention to that as much for some reason. I’m more concerned with finding people I respect that are making music that I love listening to. It’s the only way I know to stay happy doing what I’m doing….
L: What’s your favorite thing on Sub Pop that you’ve signed? What’s your favorite thing that someone else signed?
T: Hmm… that’s a tough one. I have a lot of favorites. It’s hard to beat working with old friends. The Postal Service and Beachwood Sparks both involved people I’ve known forever and love to death so those will always stick out in my mind as favorites. As for something that someone else signed I think I’d probably have to say The Vaselines. I’m not sure that counts since it was a reissue basically…
L: You used to work for a major. Give me five reasons why working at Sub Pop is better. Now give me two reasons why working here is worse.
T:
1) The people I work with here are infinitely cooler and more interesting (no offense to any previous coworkers who may be reading this, some of you were pretty cool too, but most of you were in fact pretty lame.) [You should hear all the shit he talks about you… -ed.]
2) I don’t have to work with shitty bands anymore. [Oh yeah? Two words: HA! J/K -ed.]
3) I have a much better job here.
4) Not only do I have a much better job, but I work for people who trusted and believed in me enough to let me have that job in the first place. That’s something I’ll always be incredibly grateful for. [You are shameless, Tony. –ed.]
5) Sub Pop exists. The two major labels I used to work at have both gone the way of the dodo. [DANG! Can’t argue with that! -ed.]

As for my ways its worse list:
1) I don’t have a sweet office anymore. [But you still have a sweet cubicle that you can you trash all to hell… -ed]
2) I don’t have a fridge filled with free food. [Just do like everyone else and take whatever you want, pussy. –ed]
L: You used to be a radio DJ and have your own label. Have you always been excited about music? Is there something else you ever wanted to be, like an astronaut or something?
T: I used to want to direct films. I was kind of sheltered as a kid and didn’t remotely understand what that really entailed. Film school set me straight pretty quick. Luckily, my college had KXLU, a pretty amazing radio station and working there pretty much exploded my tiny universe. Well, that and a lot of psychedelic experimentation…. [Cue Jefferson Airplane. –ed]
L: What was your first job?
T: My first paid job was prepping food for a Shakey’s Pizza. Basically ripping the guts out of chicken breasts and breading mojo potatoes. [None of that has anything to do with pizza – WTF? -ed]
L: What is your favorite West Coast record store? Your favorite Seattle record store?
T: It’s kind of impossible to beat Amoeba L.A. In Seattle I really like the Easy Street store in Queen Anne. I think we’re pretty fortunate to have Easy Street, Sonic Boom and Silver Platters up here. [That’s very diplomatic. –ed.]
L: What do you like better – CDs, mp3s, or vinyl? Why?
T: I don’t really care anymore honestly. I would have said vinyl 5 years ago but after moving my collection several times since then, it’s lost a lot of its appeal. [Sellout. –ed.]
L: Where do you see the music industry headed in the immediate future? How about in the long run?
T: Eesh. I’ll spare you my prognostications. I’m bored even trying to formulate an answer. [GODAMMIT! I am trying to perform a public service here and the only info you’ll give is about fire potatoes at Shakey’s Pizza! BULLSHIT! -ed]
L: Seen any good movies lately?
T: I just watched the first season of this Showtime show called Dexter that I thought was pretty great. [Wow, that’s totally not a movie. –ed.]
L: Are you ever going to get married and have babies?
T: I hope to.
L: What ex-Sub Pop coworker do you miss the most and why?
T: I miss Shawn Rogers the most probably. He was just an all around good guy. [True ‘nuf. –ed.]
L: Tell me a joke.
T: [Yeah, that’s right, he didn’t answer this one. I take all that nice shit that I said about him back. Please email me for his cell number and home address so that you have somewhere new to send your demos. –ed.]


Posted by Lacey Swain

MON, JUN 18, 2007 at 9:27 AM

Pre-order Patton Oswalt’s Werewolves and Lollipops!

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On July 10th, we’re putting out a new Patton Oswalt CD/DVD called Werewolves and Lollipops.

Along with the usual buttons and stickers (one of which features the catchy, minorly filthy saying, pulled straight from the CD/DVD, “Erect in Defiance of Gods’s Will”) that come with our online orders, we are offering two bucks off all pre-orders! As if that weren’t enough, Patton came into our offices and abused our photo booth. The results: ten autographed photo strips of Patton Oswalt. We are giving away these white-hot collectibles at random to 10 out of our first 100 pre-orders of Werewolves and Lollipops!

Order often and early!


Posted by Chris Jacobs