Thursday, September 18, 2014

Interview with Cory Jensen of Long Drive Records

Long Drive Records, a "DIY" record label based out of Ozark, MO and Randolph, NJ, just signed their first band, CUT YOUR LOSSES, an easycore/metalcore/band-core band from California. I sat down with Cory Jensen and asked him some questions about the label, DIY, and what he's accomplished in the short time his label has existed. 

What inspired you to start a record label and why the name?
Honestly as cliche as it sounds it was something I saw a lot of other people doing... But at the same time something I have thought about doing for a while. Beyond Productions (My promotion Company) was at a standstill due to a lack of places to throw shows and I was looking for another way to contribute to the music scene and a record label just sounded like a cool idea. The name came from a guy that was a part of the label before Dave who turned out to be a huge scumbag. (But that's another story)

So you don't run it all by yourself?
No sir, before starting the label I told myself that I wouldn't do this unless I could find someone equally as passionate about working with bands to spread their craft. I met Dave through his company This Is Pop Punk Productions and saw that was putting out these like 50+ song free compilation albums on bandcamp and working incredibly hard to promote every band on said comp. I guess I just saw a lot of passion and drive in him and thought he was the perfect fit. We also added Carolyn Ambriano to the team to handle all the photography and design stuff. You might have seen her on the past few Firestarter Tours.

What is Long Drive all about?
For me personally I would say our mission Statement would be doing whatever we can as a label to help artists spread their art, whether it be through helping with financial aid all the way to booking a tour or just helping promote your new video.

When you first started the label, in all honesty I laughed at it, thinking it wasn't going to go anywhere. But I'll admit that you've done pretty well so far as a young label. Did you expect it to do this well this soon?
Honestly not at all... I've had the page up for under 6 months and it's more than tripled the amount of likes Beyond Productions has ant hat page has been up since 2011. We've received a ton of support from both bands and lovers of music. It's pretty humbling actually.
And it's ok man I used to laugh at you too and now you're dating Sarah, congrats btw!
Aww Thanks Mane :)

You just signed California (we'll call it easycore) band, Cut Your Losses. It's your first signing, and they're a bigger band. Do you have anything that you'll be releasing soon from them?
We'll be releasing their full length which should be out sometime next year!

What is some criteria a band has to meet to get signed?
Must not be fronted by Adrian Sprague. Haha just kidding of course, but in all seriousness we're looking for bands with a professional sound, appearance, and a set of goals.

Alright bud, what does DIY mean to you, and what should it mean to others?
According to Wikipedia DIY refers to the idea of self-sufficiency through completing tasks without the aid of a paid expert. Being a "DIY" record label the only thing we pay someone else to do is press physical copies of a band's music be it vinyl, tape, or cd and print merch. Everything else is done by one of us. To those of you outside of a label DIY should be about doing things yourself in such a way that gives you a feeling of pride knowing that you were able to complete a task on your own. Honestly I've been so surprised by the things I have achieved on my own just by deciding I was done letting others do everything for me. 

You used to put on shows through the promotion company Beyond Productions, do you think that your experience with that helps you with Long Drive?
Honestly not really, it's a completely different ballgame. The only thing I really gained from Beyond Pro that helped with the label was some connections including Carolyn.

Do you agree that The Greatest Generation is the best The Wonder Years Release?
Disagree, the upsides is.
I think you're dumb then.
It's the only TWY Album I have on vinyl ;)

If you could release a brand new release for one band that currently exists, what band would it be?
Top 5? The Wonder Years, Rotting Out, Turnstile, Mindset, Have Mercy

True or correct: Baja Blast tastes like piss
Well I've never actually consumed my own urine but i'm going to have to go with false. Or neither haha

Firestarter versus For The Win. Pop Punk vs. Easycore in an all out fight to the death, which band comes out on top?
That's a tough one, in a fair fight, I would say firestarter but if it was prison rules, For The Win.

Any other upcoming releases you're allowed to talk about?
We've been talking to one band in particular but haven't heard anything back in a while. Yo Brad if you're reading this holla at yo boi.

That's all of the questions I have, any last words?
Shout out to you for taking an interest in the label and running a killer blog!
Aww thanks man. That means a lot. Thanks for doing the interview.