Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Independent Labels Hit By London Riots

Last night the Sony DADC distribution centre in Enfield, North London, was devastated by a blaze started by rioters. The riots began with the shooting of Mark Duggan in Tottenham by armed police, and have since spread throughout London and beyond.

PIAS, a company that distributes media for over 150 independent labels, including Warp, Rough Trade, Sub Pop and Mute, as well as many smaller labels, is among the worst affected. Many labels have lost their entire stock of physical media, save those that were already on sale. Such losses will hit the artists hard, because many of them still rely on the sale of physical media to earn royalties. Many of the artists signed to PIAS distributed labels have had releases delayed, and others will soon run out of physical stock.

Digital distribution has not been affected, so if you are a fan of one of the artists signed to one of these labels, do them a favour, get online and buy an album. The Guardian has a list of the affected labels here

I realise that in the grand scheme of things this is pretty small, especially when people all over London have been made homeless, and local businesses have been torched, but musicians have to make a living too, and many of these labels are too small to just write off losses like this.
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