Sweet news for local acts

Sweet news for local acts

Delicious Vinyl Island partners with Jamaican artistes

BY RICHARD JOHNSON
Observer senior reporter
johnsonr@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, January 10, 2021

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L OS ANGELES-BASED record label Delicious Vinyl Island is no stranger to the Jamaican music scene. In the 1990s the label, through a partnership with Chris Blackwell's Island Records, formed a strategic alliance and began representing reggae acts, notably Tiger and Born Jamericans, a second-generation Jamaican duo out of the United States who successfully blended dancehall and hip hop. In more recent years acts such as Mr Vegas have been under its guidance.

The label is now renewing its interest in music from the island, establishing what it described as joint ventures with a number of local acts. Owner/partner at Delicious Vinyl Island, Leslie Cooney explained that while she and her company have never swayed from their deep love and appreciation for Jamaican music, the climate is now ripe for this partnership with local acts.

“From as early as 1990 we have been working with reggae and dancehall acts. We were the ones who did the Marked for Death soundtrack, which was reggae-driven, but it has been a long road to here. We have always been interested in how we can collaborate with artistes to build their career...it's not about a big cheque, but rather working with them from the ground up. That's why we see it as a joint venture wherein the artiste brings the creativity and we partner to contribute the resources to make it all happen,” she shared with the Jamaica Observer.

For Cooney and her team it is all about providing the resources that the artistes don't have such as the development of a business model, taking their product to market, and strategically managing careers for the long term.

With this in mind she is partnering with Solid Agency's Sharon Burke to bring this to life for a new generation of artistes.

The first set of acts to benefit are Runkus, Blvk H3ro and Royal Blu. Delicious Vinyl Island will also being partnering with producers Natural High Music, and Yaadcore as well as Florida-based artiste Khxos.

“I'm really excited about this new phase; I haven't been this excited since Born Jamericans. It is like working with friends on a really cool collaboration, and the independence is exciting. The truth is, not everyone needs a major [label]. What is great is that these artistes are coming in with so much. They are educated and aware of certain aspects of the business, which makes collaboration so much easier. They come to the table with all their assets and just need a certain structure, which we can provide. So, it is such a good place to be for an artiste and they don't have to feel like they are signing away their lives,” said Cooney.

Runkus will be the first act to benefit from the collaboration with Delicious Vinyl and his project will be released shortly.


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