89.3 The Current presents the KORDA RECORDS SHOWCASE
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Korda Records is a Minneapolis based record label cooperative launched in 2012 by Allison LaBonne (Typsy Panthre, The Starfolk, The Owls), David Schelzel (The Ocean Blue), Brian Tighe (The Starfolk, The Hang Ups, The Owls) and the Legendary Jim Ruiz (Jim Ruiz Set). Korda (n. Swedish chord) is comprised of a close knit group of friends who love each others’ music, and want to help each others’ music reach more people who will love it too. “We’ve been doing this a long time and been through just about everything in the music business. We have a lot of records among us, on both major and indie labels. We’ve toured extensively, done lots of music videos, films, licensing. We’re at a point now where we want to simplify, and do things on a more direct and friendly level,” says David Schelzel.
The founders all live in Minneapolis and have deep roots there. “I’ve lived here my whole life,” says Allison LaBonne, “and I love the ease and beauty of Minneapolis. It is extremely bike-friendly with quick access to lakes and greenery, and distinct seasonal change that is stunningly gorgeous. The long, dark winters provide enforced introversion for creative types; so we have a vibrant arts scene.” Korda Records is also a response to the changing music climate. “The way we make and release music has changed so much during our careers. We wanted to work together and find the best way to do music in this new model.” says Brian Tighe.
In the Summer of 2012 the friends had four bands among them (Typsy Panthre, Jim Ruiz Set, The Starfolk and The Ocean Blue) all finishing up new records and none were sure how they’d go about releasing the records. So they decided to pool their resources and work together. “We have four new albums lined up for release. They are all so different and that’s great.” says Jim Ruiz.
Jim Ruiz Set’s new album Mount Curve Avenue, available October 25, 2012 on Korda Records and Mystery Lawn, marks the first release in 14 years by the Legendary Jim Ruiz! Now operating under the name Jim Ruiz Set with Emily Ruiz on drums and Charlotte Crabtree on bass and vocals; the band has been hard at work on this stellar 14 song opus, recorded during a week-long charmed sojourn in a stately ivy covered mansion on Mount Curve Avenue in Minneapolis. This poignant, witty, devastating and loving collection of jazz infused pop songs will melt your neo-acoustic heart.
The Ocean Blue‘s debut record on the famed Sire Records label in the late 80s achieved widespread acclaim and radio & MTV airplay. The band of four young high schoolers from Hershey, Pennsylvania went on to do two more records for Sire, the atmospheric Cerulean and alt pop Beneath the Rhythm and Sound, and a fourth record for Mercury/PolyGram, See The Ocean Blue, before leaving the majors to work quietly on their music and other pursuits.
The Starfolk is a melody rich, quasi-rootsy chamber pop group that rocks in front man Brian Tighe’s quintessentially ethereal way. Tighe fronted indie-pop darlings The Hang Ups in the 90′s, currently co-fronts bittersweet girl-boy poppers The Owls, and plays lead guitar with the belovedly hush-toned Jeremy Messersmith. In The Starfolk, Tighe is on guitar and lead vocals; joined by Allison LaBonne (The Owls, Typsy Panthre) on bass, Jacqueline Ultan (Jelloslave, Saltee, Anti-Gravity) on cello, and Stephen Ittner (The Hang Ups, The Owls) on drums. Everyone sings.
Typsy Panthre is the recording duo Allison LaBonne and John Crozier. Their sound is fun and dark; like a 2nd cousin of the Smiths and Nick Drake with electronic drums and gentle female vocals. LaBonne (who sings and writes songs with The Starfolk and The Owls) was already a fan of John’s songwriting in the likes of Ninotchka, Ninian Hawick, and Muskellunge; and of his guitar work in a host of Minneapolis bands from the garage punk Wahinis, to the bossa-pop Legendary Jim Ruiz Group, to the lush, sixties-inspired Hang Ups.
Former Radio K, REV 105, NPR alum and present host on 89.3 the Current, Jake's been voted "best DJ" in the Twin Cities by the readers & critics of City Pages magazine ten years running (2003-2012) and one of Star Tribune's "Artists of the Year" (2012). His long-running "Transmission" dance night has been a weekly staple on the Minneapolis scene bringing a mixture of mod, glam & punk to post-punk, new wave, synth & indie rock for over a decade.