Paul Hardy (Baker Street Recordings) interview

What inspired you to start Baker Street Recordings, and how would you describe running a label to someone else thinking of starting one?

It was the combination of wanting to release our own music and for me the business, A&R side. That part of the music industry was really interesting to me. Running a label is a labour of love, you have to love the music and throw yourself into the industry. Money is tight and you have to have a keen ear for the music. If you’re looking to start a label and be successful look to put all your spare cash into it and don’t over release, take your time, treat each EP with the attention it needs, the work only starts once its released.

Your new compilation celebrates the 5th Anniversary of the label in two parts. What process decided the tracks to go on each one?

It took a lot of debating and thinking about to choose which tracks would work well for the remix album.  In the end we drafted a shortlist and let some of the producers decide.  We are really happy with how the album has turned out, there have been a couple of tracks from the release that have become favorites and been played by quite a number of people, but they have all been really well received!

The tracks on part two are really a collection of our most popular.  We have noticed that from starting the promo for this release it has kick started a second life into some of our bigger previous releases, such as the Timewriter remix of ‘Insomniac Oasis’ and Yousef’s ‘Don’t Touch Me’ mix.

You initially released music on vinyl before moving to digital and are now planning to release on vinyl once again. Why is that important to you?

One of the overriding factors is the lack of support that some download sites are giving to smaller labels.  That combined with the thousands of releases that come out each week means your releases just get lost.  Some download sites are getting things right for the underground market; Traxsource for example seems to understand the problem.  The move to vinyl means that we can release in a less flooded marketplace.  We are also looking at just selling all our release direct from our site, cutting out all the extra costs and getting the label back to that personal feel that people really like. Big Risk Though.

How would you describe your process of producing music? Any favorite piece of software or instrument?

Pro Tools is our production software of choice.  We also run Ableton alongside this.  What seems to work really well for us is to have the bones of the track laid out in Pro Tools, and any extra sounds and bits that need creating are done in Ableton, and then put into a network file so we can access it from any of the studio Macs.  The process of having two people in the studio producing one track has really helped to fuel creativity.

The only VST that we stick to religiously is Spectrasonic’s Trillian for basses, there is no competition in my opinion especially for an analogue sound if you can’t afford the hardware.  Hardware wise we mix down through an Allen & Heath Zed-R16 and TL Audio valve compressors.

The label has a very distinctive sound, how would you best describe it?

I’d like to just say House, but that’s means so many things nowadays, so Deep house with a influence of Jack from Chicago and Tech from Detroit.

Tell us about your forthcoming plans for Baker Street nights?

We have some pretty exciting plans for Baker Street nights.  The general idea will be to have DJ’s and live musicians combining on stage.  There are such a high number of nights around at the moment that we want to create an experience that stands out from the rest of these nights.  This element of live music as well as DJ’s will help to make the nights more memorable, and when the event is fully branded up with Baker Street and everyone is wearing old school Sherlock tweed it should be a great atmosphere.  Also if we ever get any nice weather again there are rumors of a barge party!!

What do you listen to when you’re not at Baker Street?

There is a new artist coming through called Rohit who creates the most stunning electronic music with an Indian influence, one to watch for the future. In the office we listen to everything from Elvis, The Beatles to Black Sabbath and everything in between.!/bakerstreetrec


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