Naima Bock has shared an official video for her striking new single, “Lines” which is now available on all DSPs from Sub Pop/Memorials of Distinction. This stand-alone track was engineered & produced by Ali Chant in 2022 at The Playpen Studio, in Bristol, UK.
Bock reveals “Lines is about what we do to each other, some call the dance of intimacy, exchanges. What we are given, carry with us, then subsequently pass on to others- good and bad. How the recipient is often undeserving of the negative side of this reality. It’s about trying to dodge blame and the loneliness of guilt. It’s about the irony of impermanence and unhealthy patterns coexisting; ‘nothing stays’ but ‘nothings changed’. The idea of change I had grown accustomed to but the reality that some things won’t change until you actively work on them is something new to me, preferring to adopt a slightly lazy attitude and misunderstanding the saying ‘all passes’. Sometimes it doesn’t pass quickly enough. It’s also a song about anger, and the familiarity of not knowing where to put it.” You can watch the official video for “Lines” which was directed by Kit Harwood HERE.
Naima will return to the US on Friday, March 3rd performing songs from her critically acclaimed debut release Giant Palm. See below for a full list of dates.
Praised for its originality, warmth, and ambition, Giant Palm has been heralded as one of last year’s finest debuts so far with features from CLASH, Loud & Quiet, The Quietus, and Uncut, and receiving rave reviews like “Album of the Week” from Stereogum, Brooklyn Vegan (Indie Basement), The Line of Best Fit and inclusion on Pitchfork’s “34 Great Records You May Have Missed”, Spring/Summer” list.
Giant Palm also appeared on multiple year end lists, including #1 on Brooklyn Vegan’s “Indie Basement: Top 40 Albums of 2022” as well as its “50 Best Albums of 2022” list. The album also appeared on additional “Best of 2022” lists from Stereogum (#24), Loud & Quiet (#22), Clash (#42), and Our Culture (#50).
Fri. Mar. 03 - Brooklyn, NY - Public Records
Sat. Mar. 04 - Philadelphia, PA - World Cafe Live
Sun. Mar. 05 - Washington, DC - Songbyrd Cafe
Wed. Mar. 08 - Seattle, WA - Barboza
Sat. Mar. 11 - Los Angeles, CA - Gold Diggers
Tue. Mar. 14 - Bristol, UK - Thekla Social*
Wed. Mar. 15 - Norwich, UK - Norwich Art Centre*
Thu. Mar. 16 - O2 - Oxford, UK - Academy Oxford*
Fri. Mar. 17 - London, UK - Heaven*
Sat. Mar. 25 - Bristol, UK - Ritual Union Festival
Sat. Apr. 01- Manchester, UK - Fair Play Festival
Sat. May. 27 - London, UK - Wide Awake Festival
Fri. Jun. 09- Sat. 10 - Ipswich, UK - Brighten The Corners Festival
*Supporting Orlando Weeks
What People Are Saying About Naima Bock’s Giant Palm:
“There’s a bit of ’70s Brian Eno in her vocal delivery and an echo of John Cale in her arrangements, but the fusion of her disparate cultural influences makes for an enchanting sound entirely Bock’s own.” [“Giant Palm”] - New York Times
“Exquisite solo debut” - ★★★★ MOJO
“Quiet, melancholy and occasionally divinely uplifting (8/10)” - Uncut
“Hugely ambitious - the individual pieces are delicately arranged, the end product solid as steel” [ “Music of the Month”] - The Quietus
“A real gem…[it’s] cinematic and spectral; it makes one contemplate things like energy flows and meditation and the long arc of history.” [“Album of the Week”] - Stereogum
“Giant Palm, is quietly dazzling, drawing from a wide range of influences including ’70s British folk, jazz, and Tropicalia.” [“Album of the Week, Indie Basement”] - Brooklyn Vegan
“This album has an unforced charm, making it an ideal accompaniment to long summer nights” ★★★★- The Times of London
“Naima Bock’s ‘Giant Palm’ is - frankly - exquisite. A truly special listen” - CLASH
“Steady and calming, intimate and revelatory, sporadically startling - it’s a record as unique as Bock’s history (8/10)” - Loud and Quiet
“As a debut, Giant Palm situates itself in a specific tradition without being constrained by convention - finding a voice in ten tracks that occupy their own lifeforce, almost set in motion by the elements.” ★★★★ - DIY
“Giant Palm is a stellar debut and one of 2022’s more distinct releases (8/10)” - The Line of Best Fit
“Though she took a roundabout path to make and release Giant Palm, the way Bock shares her profound moments and little insights with a generous spirit makes for an often brilliant debut.” ★★★★ - All Music
On April 14th, Shannon Lay will release a 9-song digital album of covers entitled Covers Vol. 1. She shares “I absolutely love doing covers. It’s such a joy to offer my perspective on songs I admire and spread the word about amazing artists. Covers Vol. 1 is the first in a series of cover records celebrating my obsession with shannonizing songs.”
For her debut cover, “Angeles” by Elliott Smith, Lay shares “If I had a nickel for every minute I’ve spent listening to Elliott Smith I’d be a very rich woman. His intricate thoughtfulness always fills me up. “Angeles” was one of those songs I was always quite intimidated to learn but upon finally trying it came together so naturally. Then Debbie Neigher topped things off with an amazing piano outro. I love feeling Elliott’s spirit embedded in the musical scene at large. Anywhere notes are played he lives on.” Directed by Kai MacKnight you can watch this charming homage to Smith and her home, Los “Angeles” HERE.
Lay will embark on a 8-date run opening for Whitney starting on March 20th in Denver, CO, with additional shows in Salt Lake City, Seattle, Portland and San Francisco, ending on March 30th in her home city of Los Angeles. She will then head overseas in April playing headline shows in France, Manchester, Bristol and London with performances at Sound & Vision Festival in Cambridge, UK and Roots of Heaven Festival in Haarlem, NL. See below for a full list of dates.
Mon. Mar. 20 - Denver, CO - - Bluebird Theatre ^ Tue. Mar. 21 - Fort Collins, CO - Aggie Theatre ^ Wed. Mar. 22 - Salt Lake City, UT - Soundwell ^ Sat. Mar. 25 - Seattle, WA - Crocodile ^ Sun. Mar. 26 - Portland, OR - Aladdin Theater ^ Mon. Mar. 28 -San Francisco, CA - The Chapel ^ Tue. Mar. 29 - Menlo Park, CA - Guild Theater ^ Wed. Mar. 30 - Los Angeles, CA - The Regent ^ Sat. Apr. 15 - Toulon, FR - Faveurs de Printemps Tue. Apr. 18 - Manchester, UK - Gullivers Wed. Apr. 19 - Bristol, UK - The Cube Thu. Apr. 20 - London, UK - Kings Place Fri. Apr. 21 - Cambridge, UK - Sound & Vision Festival Sun. Apr. 23 - Haarlem, NL - Roots of Heaven Festival Wed. Apr. 26 - Dublin, IE - Cobblestone
^ w/ Whitney
Shannon Lay Covers Vol. 1
Tracklisting: Angeles (Elliott Smith) From the Morning (Nick Drake) Blues Run the Game (Jackson C. Frank) Close My Eyes (Arthur Russell) The Keepers (Ty Segall) I Lost Something in the Hills (Sibylle Baier) Glow Worms (Vashti Bunyan) I’m Set Free (The Velvet Underground) I Am Slow (OCS)
On Friday, May 19th, Hannah Jadagu (pron. juh-dah-goo) will release Aperture, her first full-length effort on CD/LP/CS/DSPs worldwide from Sub Pop. The 12-song album, which features “What You Did,” “Lose,” “Admit It,” and “Say it Now,” was co-produced by Jadagu and Max Robert Baby at Greasy Studios Paris, mixed by Marcus Linon, and mastered by Dave Cooley at Elysian Mastering.
While her debut digital-only EP What Is Going On? was heavy on layered reverb, making Jadagu’s vocals feel “shy,” she took what she calls a more “intimate, up close” approach while recording her voice for the LP. That experimentation is best heard on the rousing lead single “What You Did,” which leverages crushing accusations against the song’s unnamed subject. Screaming static and a crunchy guitar part softens under Jadagu’s calm delivery as she sings: “Act like it’s best if we make amends, but I don’t wanna talk to you again.”(Damn). Watch the official video “What You Did,” which stars Jadagu, and is directed by Leia Jospé.
Jadagu’s What Is Going On?, and follow-up singles “All My Time Is Wasted,” and previously released Aperture-highlight “Say It Now,” have earned her praise from the likes of Brooklyn Vegan, The FADER, For the Rabbits, Alternative Press, Guitar World, Jezebel, SPIN, Stereogum, Ones to Watch, Under the Radar, Dork, CLASH, The Independent, DIY, The Line of Best Fit, The Forty Five, and Our Culture.
CLASH says “Say It Now” is “A lucid slice of indie pop, the hazy guitars wrap themselves around a lyric that refuses to shy away from difficult questions.” The Line of Best Fit raves, calling it “a triumphantly dreamlike stitching together of smooth R&B tones and spacious indie instrumentation, with pop elements bleeding through the seams.” Stereogum offers this, “[‘Say It Now’] is “a dreamy, poppy indie-rock song with a chorus big enough to sweep you away.”
Jadagu also toured steadily, playing shows and winning over audiences across the US and Europe opening for the likes Faye Webster, Beach Fossils, Wild Nothing, Ritt Momney, Metronomy and Arlo Parks, and performing at Denmark’s Roskilde Festival in July and Pitchfork Music Fest in London. A headlining North American tour announcement will follow in the coming weeks.
More on Hannah Jadagu’s Aperture: Fresh out of high school, Hannah Jadagu released her debut EP, What Is Going On?, a collection of intimate bedroom pop tracks recorded entirely on an iPhone 7, which was, at the time, Jadagu’s most accessible mode of production. An off-the-cuff approach to music making and instinctive ability to write unforgettable hooks belied the intensity of Jadagu’s subject matter. In a short run time, What Is Going On? confronts some of the nation’s most urgent struggles all through Jadagu’s compassionate perspective. “I want my songs to be both super intimate and still universally relatable,” Jadagu says. “With the EP, so many people told me that the songs resonated with them on a personal level, and that’s what I’m always hoping for.”
Resonate it did; What Is Going On? is Jadagu’s first Sub Pop release, but she’d been putting out music on SoundCloud for years, garnering a small online fanbase as she settled into an aesthetic, and recognition from a broader audience was overdue. “It really took off when I became a percussionist in my middle school’s band,” she says. “Writing songs started as a hobby and quickly became a passion to the point that I spent all my free time recording.”
On May 19th, 2023 Jadagu premieres Aperture, her first LP and most ambitious work to date. Written in the years between graduating from high school in Mesquite, TX and her sophomore year of college in New York, Aperture finds Jadagu in a state of transition. “Where I grew up, everyone is Christian; even if you don’t go to church, you’re still practicing in some form,” Jadagu says, laughing. “Moving out of my small hometown has made me reflect on how embedded Christianity is in the culture down there, and though I’ve been questioning my relationship to the church since high school, it’s definitely a theme on this album, but so is family.”
As a kid, Jadagu followed her older sister – a major source of inspiration who she refers to as “the blueprint” – to a local children’s chorus, where she received choral training. “I hated it,” Jadagu admits. “But it taught me how to harmonize, how to discover my tone, how to recognize and write melody.” The aching single “Admit It” is dedicated to Jadagu’s sister, whose boundless love and impeccable taste has been a constant for Jadagu ever since she was a kid. At home, the siblings were raised on mom’s Young Money mixtapes and the Black Eyed Peas (to whom she credits her love of vocoder) but it was in the sanctity of her sister’s car that Jadagu discovered indie artists who would go on to inspire her work.
“Lose” showcases Jadagu’s love of contemporary indie auteurs as it weaves a spare and unpretentious guitar riff with barebones piano chords all while Jadagu sings about the thrill and underlying fear that comes with beginning a new relationship. It is, in her words, a “classic pop song.” “The things we haven’t done/ Play out in my mind/ Would you just give me time?” she sings, nearing the end, as the skittering drumbeat propels the song from a place of contemplative yearning to defiance. “Every track on this album, except for “Admit It”, was written first on guitar, which is an instrumental throughline,” Jadagu says. “But the blanket of synths I use throughout helps me move between sensibilities. There’s rock Hannah, there’s hip-hop Hannah, and so on. I didn’t want any of the songs to sound too alike.”
Emblematic of this ethos is the single “Warning Sign,” which starts out as an acoustic, R&B slowburner before a muscular electric guitar enters the mix and the song morphs into something akin to psychedelic. “I knew I could make another album on my phone, but I wanted to make sure that I was leveling up, especially for the debut,” Jadagu says. So she began the difficult process of searching for a co-producer capable of complementing her work without dominating it. Enter Max Robert Baby, a French songwriter and producer who captured Jadagu’s attention with his take on Aperture’s lead single “Say It Now.” The duo worked together remotely, sending stems to one another via email, before eventually meeting in-person for the first time at Greasy Studios on the outskirts of Paris.
“When I recorded my EP, it was all MIDI, but in the studio Max and I worked with a ton of analog instruments,” Jadagu says. “There’s some Glockenspiel on the album, calling back to my percussionist days, and some synth warping that adds texture.” While What Is Going On? was heavy on layered reverb, making Jadagu’s vocals feel “shy,” she took what she calls a more “intimate, up close” approach while recording her voice for the LP. That experimentation is best heard on the rousing “What You Did,” which leverages crushing accusations against the song’s unnamed subject. Screaming static and a crunchy guitar part softens under Jadagu’s calm delivery as she sings: “Act like it’s best if we make amends, but I dont wanna talk to you again.”
An aperture is strictly defined as an opening, a hole, a gap. On a camera, it’s the mechanism that light passes through, allowing a photographer to immortalize a moment in time. For Jadagu, the word perfectly encapsulates the mood of her debut album. In the years it took her to complete, she faced moments of darkness, sure, but the process of making it, her first ever in a professional studio, was ultimately a cathartic experience, one she now shares with you, the listener. Let the light in.
Hannah Jadagu Aperture
Tracklisting: 1. Explanation 2. Say It Now 3. Six Months 4. What You Did 5. Lose 6. Admit It 7. Dreaming 8. Shut Down 9. Warning Sign 10. Scratch The Surface 11. Letter To Myself 12. Your Thoughts Are Ur Biggest Obstacle
In the high-octane, provocative and hard AF new DEBBY FRIDAY single “I GOT IT,” cocksure and vainglorious lyrics about her “big ol ego” and “red blood libido” riddle this lucid, acid housey, high-BPM track that features accompaniment by Chris Vargas of Pelada / Uñas. The song is from GOOD LUCK, her full-length debut, out March 24th worldwide from Sub Pop.
The supercharged energy of “I GOT IT” fuels the grit and gloss of this official video, which stars FRIDAY and Vargas. The official video was directed by FRIDAY, and features interstitial imagery from the GOOD LUCK short film being released along with the album, later this spring.
FRIDAY says of “I GOT IT,” “This track is a ‘Get in the Uber, Bitch!’ ode to nightlife, purgatory, and club rats everywhere. Uñas and I had been wanting to collab for a while and this was a case of right vibe, right time.”
Her upcoming short film GOOD LUCK is a pseudo-autobiographical tale, largely drawn from FRIDAY’s own life and experiences growing up as a zillenial anti-heroine. A surrealist reflection on the tumultuous whirlwind that is the end of adolescence and the emotionality of youth, GOOD LUCK is co-directed by FRIDAY and Nathan De Paz Habib (Chino Amobi’s Eroica, and The Bicycle).
DEBBY FRIDAY’s previously announced international headlining tour dates and festival appearances in support of GOOD LUCK resume Friday, February 17th in Toronto with a sold out Boiler Room performance, and currently run through May 6th, 2023. FRIDAY will also appear at SXSW (March 15th - 18th). Additional live dates to be announced soon.
Fri. Feb. 17 - Toronto, ON - Boiler Room Wed. Mar. 15 - Austin, TX - SXSW Thu. Mar. 16 - Austin, TX - SXSW Fri. Mar. 17 - Austin, TX - SXSW Sat. Mar. 18 - Austin, TX - SXSW Fri, Mar. 24 - Montreal, QC - Phi Centre Sat. Mar 25 - Toronto, ON - Garrison Wed. Apr. 12 - Portland, OR - Mississippi Studios Thu. Apr. 13 - Seattle, WA - Barboza Fri. Apr. 14 - Los Angeles - Zebulon Sat. Apr. 15 - Vancouver - Cobalt Wed. Apr. 19 - Brooklyn, NY - Babys Alright Thurs. Apr. 20 - Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle Wed. May 03 - London, UK - Corsica Studios w/ Grove
GOOD LUCK features “SO HARD TO TELL,” “I GOT IT,” “WHAT A MAN,” and was co-produced by DEBBY FRIDAY and Graham Walsh (METZ, Holy Fuck) at Candle Recording Studio in Toronto, and mastered by Heba Kadry in New York.
Released in January, DEBBY FRIDAY’s “SO HARD TO TELL” saw incredible amount of praise from the likes of Pitchfork (Best New Track), NPR (Now Playing), The FADER (‘Song You Need In Your Life”), Billboard, Nylon, FLOOD, Cool Hunting, Brooklyn Vegan, Stereogum, Treble, Dork, DIY, CLASH, Our Culture and more.
What people are saying about DEBBY FRIDAY: “In contrast to the pulse-quickening tempos and noisy synths of her past music, her production is deft and graceful, with a skipping beat and cascading backing vocals. ‘Lady Friday/All you do is rеbel,’ Friday chastises herself—tough talk against a fragile, gorgeous sound.” [“SO HARD TO TELL”/ “Best New Track”] - Pitchfork
“One of the young year’s most audacious bangers” [“SO HARD TO TELL”] - Billboard
“Intoxicating…” [“SO HARD TO TELL”] - Stereogum
“Hyperpop can sometimes come off as abrasive but in the hands of Canadian singer DEBBY FRIDAY it’s soulful, even elegant.” [“SO HARD TO TELL”] - NYLON
“A graceful entrance into yet another territory: lush R&B”[“SO HARD TO TELL”] - NPR Music
“If you’ve ever deep-dived into Debby Friday’s discography, you’ll know she slammed this single into left field, but man is it a hit! This edgy extraordinaire has taken a dip into the darkside via falsetto pop.” ” [“SO HARD TO TELL”] - MTV
“In contrast to the pulse-quickening tempos and noisy synths of her past music, her production is deft and graceful, with a skipping beat and cascading backing vocals. ‘Lady Friday/All you do is rеbel,’ Friday chastises herself—tough talk against a fragile, gorgeous sound.” [“SO HARD TO TELL”/ “Best New Track”] - Pitchfork
“Friday strikes a remarkable balance on her forthcoming debut LP, GOOD LUCK: between the boisterous and the tranquil, the erudite and the crass, a packed dancefloor and quiet isolation. Featuring unequivocal bangers like “I GOT IT,” “PLUTO BABY,” and “HEARTBREAKERRR,” Debby Friday is destined for bigger stages in 2023 (15 Artists to Watch in 2023).” - SPIN
About DEBBY FRIDAY’S GOOD LUCK: The usual boom-and-bust cycles of growing up – breaking down, gathering the strength to get up, fumbling hard, doing it all over again - can feel unmooring, to say the least, but, and according to DEBBY FRIDAY, its tragedies and glories need savoring. Losing illusions, gaining expectations; getting deep into the private, soupy kaleidoscope of what’s possible and what’s futile – GOOD LUCK, her debut, and supernovic, full-length album, is built on welcoming the journey’s complicated drops and mountain highs with something more like grace.
Nigerian-born, then an emigré to bits of Canada - from Montreal to Vancouver to Toronto - DEBBY FRIDAY’s roamings through space and time really began when the sun fell. Nightlife was her emancipation from the toughness of home life, and she fell into it, body and soul, totally seduced. Raves til sunrise; house music in unknown basements and warehouses – the lure of the party was the perfect escape. “I was like a little club rat,” she laughs. Her adoration of the world that it opened for her came in “almost in a sensual way (read more at Sub Pop).
DEBBY FRIDAY GOOD LUCK
Tracklisting: 1. GOOD LUCK 2. SO HARD TO TELL 3. I GOT IT (feat. Uñas) 4. HOT LOVE 5. HEARTBREAKERRR 6. WHAT A MAN 7. SAFE 8. LET U DOWN 9. PLUTO BABY 10. WAKE UP
You can now hear new contributions to the Sub Pop Singles Club Vol. 7 from Sidney Gish and Bartees Strange, both out today worldwide on all DSPs from Sub Pop.
Sidney Gish is a singer-songwriter currently based in New York. She produced her first two albums, Ed Buys Houses (2016) and No Dogs Allowed (2017) while attending college in Boston. Following the moderate success of No Dogs Allowed, she toured the album throughout the US and Europe as a solo live looping act. In 2022, she toured as a support act for TV Girl, Beach Bunny, and Cavetown. She has been working on new music, and will be sharing more of it soon.
Sidney Gish says of her contributions to the series, “I start lots of songs, but finish very few. Sometimes, I try to overcome this habit by skipping the ‘ideas’ phase, and improvising a song to completion within a few hours. Both ‘Filming School’ and ‘MFSOTSOTR’ were created this way. ‘Filming School’ was recorded in fall 2021 at my apartment in Brooklyn. The lyrics were freestyled while reflecting on film school, which I did not attend. In 2022, I added bass & synth to ‘Filming School,’ as well as piano, engineered by Lily Wen at Figure 8 Studios. ‘MFSOTSOTR’ was recorded in late summer 2019 at my old apartment on Mission Hill. The lyrics were freestyled while staring at a meme of a buff man wearing high-waisted jeans. No edits were ever made to ‘MFSOTSOTR.’ It has haunted my hard drive for three years.”
Bartees Strange is a songwriter and producer based in Washington, DC. He was born in England to a military father and opera-singer mother Strange had a peripatetic early childhood before eventually settling in Mustang, Oklahoma. Later, he cut his teeth playing in hardcore bands in Washington D.C. and Brooklyn whilst working in Barack Obama’s administration and (eventually) the environmental movement. Since charting a path as a solo artist, Bartees Strange has released an EP reimagining songs by The National (Say Goodbye To Pretty Boy, 2020), his debut album proper Live Forever (2020), and the critically-acclaimed follow-up Farm To Table (2022).
Bartees says about “Tisched Off”: “As an up and coming musician, there’s a very special pain that comes with realizing a huge chunk of the artists you’re competing with have way more money and resources than you. This song takes little digs at them. It’s cute. Tisch is like the fashion school at NYU. When I was living in BK I ran into a bunch of young punk bands and experimental acts that rose quickly from that school. I remember feeling like damn - how do you compete with people like that? They’ve got some very real resources. Anywho - it’s just me making fun.”
Of “Keekee’in,” Bartees offers this: “This song is extremely special to me. During our tour with Car Seat Headrest the band had Covid. I was bunkered down with my guitarist Dan at his family’s house in the basement. I figured it would be cool to write something using only the tools we had. All of the instrumentation was done with stuff from that room. Matchsticks, pillows for drums, very random keyboards, etc. I wrote this song to get some feelings out I had about some business people I was considering working with - they ended up being shady and I was feeling very betrayed. I was thinking about how valuable it is to have people you can really trust. And how few those people are.”
Subscribe to the Sub Pop Singles Club Vol. 7 to get twelve exclusive, limited-to-1,000-copies, colored-vinyl 7” records that you will, undoubtedly, love and adore. In addition to the Bartees Strange and Sidney Gish singles announced today, subscribers will get 7”s by Keiji Heino, SLIFT, The William Loveday Intention, Zeal & Ardor, Hunx and His Punx, The Shadracks, Dummy, Irreversible Entanglements, Party Dozen, and Matthew “Doc” Dunn.
Sub Pop Records is extremely proud to announce the return (for our 17th year!) of the Sub Pop Loser Scholarship. Further details on the scholarship are below, and even further below is some clarification on what we mean with all this “Loser” business.
Sub Pop Records is offering a grand total of $18,000 in college scholarship money to three eligible high school seniors. There are three scholarships—each for $6,000! As longtime, proud losers ourselves, we’re exceedingly happy to be able, in some small way, to help further the education of art-enthused misfits from the NW. Individuals from all cultures and communities are encouraged to apply. Applicants must be residents of Washington or Oregon, and graduating seniors on the way to full-time enrollment at an accredited university or college. We are looking for applicants who are involved and/or interested in music and/or creative media and arts in some way. However, you do not need to be pursuing an education in the arts.
To apply: you must submit an essay, one page or less, using any combination of the following questions as a guide (or write something completely your own, be inspired and creative!). Please list the school you are graduating from and the school you plan to attend in the fall at the top of your essay along with your contact information.
- What are you doing in the arts/music field in your community? - What does being a Sub Pop ‘Loser’ mean to you? - What are your influences and/or who inspired you to become involved in the arts? - Describe your biggest failure and explain how it has brought you closer to your goal(s). - Discuss a special attribute or accomplishment that sets you apart. - How has your family or community background affected the way you see the world? - Why should you be the Loser winner?
Applicants are strongly (!) encouraged to send digital links and/or provide hard copies of their artwork, photos of community involvement, radio show links, videos, etc. along with their essay (we have never had a winner who submitted only an essay w/no extras). However, please be aware that Sub Pop will not return any of this material, so please don’t send originals. Sub Pop will give equal opportunity to all applicants who fit the criteria outlined above.
The deadline for applications is Tuesday, March 21st, 2023. Please send all submissions and attachments to firstname.lastname@example.org by Tuesday, March 21st. We will announce the scholarship winners during the first week of April.
What we talk about when we talk about “Loser.” Here at Sub Pop Records, we use the word “loser” a lot. You may have noticed. We’ve printed it on things we sell (hats, shirts, stickers, mugs, and more!), we call the first, colored-vinyl, limited-edition pressings of the records we release the “Loser Edition,” and every year since 2007 ish we’ve awarded tuition money to college-bound NW high school students through the “Sub Pop Loser Scholarship.” And, it’s possible we take for granted that you guys catch our drift and understand what we mean when we’re all “loser this,” and “loser that.” So! The following…
Sub Pop’s use of the word “loser” goes back to the foundation of the label and is meant as a celebration of unabashedly being ourselves without conforming to any preconceived ideas of “normal.” To be a loser is central to the very idea of underground art and culture - all of it happening and thriving outside of the mainstream, and not necessarily looking for a way in. Bruce Pavitt’s “New Pop Manifesto” in the 1st issue of Subterranean Pop included, “The important thing to remember is this: the most intense music, the most original ideas… are coming out of scenes you don’t even know exist… Only by supporting new ideas by local artists, bands, and record labels can the U.S. expect any kind of dynamic social/cultural change…” And, since 2007 or so, with the Loser Scholarship, we’ve been adding students to that list, and putting our (or, our co-founder, big boss and biggest loser ever, Jonathan Poneman’s…) money where our mouth is. Sub Pop Records strives to bring attention to music and art from the fringes that might otherwise remain marginalized. And, in that same spirit, through our annual Loser Scholarship, we’re looking for art-enthused misfits in NW high schools, losers like us, to help them pay for college. We stand proudly with and support the misfits, weirdos and losers, because we believe that when we’re able to proudly be nothing other than our true selves, we have the ability to make the world stronger, smarter and better.
So, good luck, Losers!
And, again, please send all submissions and attachments to email@example.com by Tuesday, March 21st.