From Jamie Strong / co-founder Innovative Leisure Records:
There was a time in the not so distant past when Nate Nelson & I decided to leave our well paid jobs and health insurance working for a legendary label (Stones Throw Records), in order to explore greener pastures - aka starting our own label. At first, we were working out of an apartment in the un-gentrified era of Echo Park, packing up orders of artists that nobody ever heard of in an unbearably hot month-to-month storage unit. No seed money... no salary and no health insurance. At least we had a pocket full of drink tickets from The Echo and a vision to pursue what we believed in. That good music can come in all forms... psych-rock to soul, house to hip-hop, jazz to electronica. Our ethos was as long as we continued to put out the music and artists that we believed in, the business side of things would work itself out. Shortly thereafter, Hanni El Khatib left his job as Creative Director for skate/streetwear brand HUF to focus full-time on music and partner up with us. Welcome to the pillars of Innovative Leisure Records.
A few years in, Billboard called IL 'a prodigy among young record labels' ... well, we are no longer that young label nor them young lads, but nonetheless, we are excited to still be in pursuit of that same ethos 10 years later. It's been an honor over the years to first work with the likes of BADBADNOTGOOD, Rhye, Allah-Las, Nick Waterhouse as well as put out some of the earliest releases from the likes of CLASSIXX, Nosaj Thing, Machinedrum, Freddie Gibbs, The Buttertones, Tijuana Panthers & many more.
It's that same hunt for the known and unknown that drives us today and we're excited for you to see and hear what's in store for 2020. New signings, debut artists and new albums from the existing roster are all on the horizon.
With that being said, we wanted to celebrate our 10-year anniversary with something special, and it doesn't get more special than a western saloon in the middle of the desert - Pappy & Harriet's . We're taking it over this Jan 17th (Fri) and Jan 18th (Sat) for two nights of programming showcasing the eclectic nature of the label in an intimate setting alongside some very special surprise guests!
It’s the Innovative Leisure Weekender presented by KCRW.
Give a listen to some of our artist releases over the years and we’ll see you in the desert!