CD Baby is the largest distributor of independent music on the planet. It’s the home of more than 300,000 artists. The CD Baby catalog makes up an estimated 17 per cent of iTunes track offerings. CD Baby is a distribution partner for many musicians who have become icons in the new music industry. Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon and Macklemore both had their start on CD Baby and their catalog titles are still offered. Other artists, like Ingrid Michaelson and Gregory Alan Isakov have maintained independent and highly successful careers even as they’ve continued their partnerships with CD Baby. Greg Brown and Grant Lee Phillips are among musicians who’ve dropped the old label system and run their own indie careers with the help of CD Baby. But which CD Baby artists will be the next to reach household name status? The Iceberg Tip Sheet offers a quick round up of recent and upcoming releases distributed by CD Baby, showcasing breakthrough artists, as well as cult stars and up-and-comers.
10/07/2014 Chaos Chaos, Committed To The Crime
A new name and a new direction. Seattle duo Chaos Chaos – sisters Asya and Chloe Saavedra, who first made their name as indie-pop band Smoosh – hit the ground running with the six-song EP Committed to the Crime, a glittering exploration of electro-pop and hip-hop. They still know how to write memorable melodies and hooks that tug at the brain, but now the lyrics have a more personal quality. Named for a large amoeba, the pair have a sound that’s made for the ear, but still dance-floor friendly, big yet still intimate and glossy without coming close to slick. This time it’s from the heart.
10/21/2014 Escort, If You Say So
Eight years into their career, and disco orchestra Escort are still tripping through new territory. The two-track single “If You Say So” follows up their Chameleon single, with something just as dynamic, ambitious, and danceable. Fronted by singer Adeline Michèle and producers Eugene Cho and Dan Balis,the band fields anywhere from five to twelve members for shows, and uses the sounds of New York, Chicago, and Detroit as a jumping-off point for their own voyage across the dance floor that loves the past but looks very clearly to the future.
10/28/2014 Black Milk, If There’s A Hell Below
The fifth album from lauded producer/rapper Black Milk is filled with elegant samples and rhythms that startle. But bringing in the unexpected and making it fit his music – always adapting and evolving – has long been his hallmark. With a rapid delivery and a positive message, he once again lays a blueprint for others to follow, while he stays ahead of the game. Joined by Blu, Bun B, and Pete Rock, as well as teaming up again with old friends Random Axe, Ab, and Mel, this is Black Milk as his most creative, both lyrically and technologically.
11/04/2014 Miguel Zenón, Identities Are Changeable
MacArthur and Guggenheim Fellow, nominated several times for Grammy Awards, saxophonist Miguel Zenón has been the bridge between the older and younger generations of jazz musician. On his ninth album he goes to his own roots, looking at the cultural identity of New York-based Puerto Ricans, basing each of the compositions on conversations, and given life by a 12-piece band made up of some of the Big Apple’s best jazz talent. It’s his most personal work to date, one that reaches deep within a proud, long-established culture that still finds itself caught between two worlds.