Before we start to dive a bit into the already large and rich story of the Californian label Not Not Fun Records, we must say: they are really easy, nice, and obliging folks. Music lovers, who are totally dedicated to their vision! In terms of style, design, and all the other ways that can be used for artistic exposure they never follow one road. Instead since 2004 Britt and Amanda Brown release, produce, and compose music that is linked to an intiutive way of making music. A way that leaves the traditional model of proper producing beyond. That recourse old mediums like the tape to give them a contemporary rebirth. All this with a sort of New Age, No Wave, Drone, Noise, and Psychedelic music charme that is really difficult to compare with other contemporary music. Amanda Brown's personal label project 100% Silk, launched in 2011, is easier to describe. Here you get what people think and feel about House and Techno who are not bonded to a business ruled dance scene. Truly underground Electric Boogie, weird Pop, Italodisco, and dry House tunes. On both labels artists such as Peaking Lights, Maria Minerva, Ital, Dylan Ettinger, Sun Araw, High Wolf, and Amanda Brown's own musical reincarnation as LA Vampires already gained international fame for compositions that share one intention: to expand the mind of each new listener! Currently the Not Not Fun Records / 100% Silk family tours around Europe. Shortly before they hit the road we managed to talk to Britt Brown about their label, his childhood dream job, and some feelings towards the world he is living in.
How do you both know each other?
Britt Brown: I met Amanda in 2003 when she joined as one of the interns at a magazine I was writing for at the time. She got tired of it and quit so we started dating as an excuse to keep hanging out. Office romance.
What is your musical background? What was the impetus behind the start-up of Not Not Fun Records and 100% Silk?
Britt Brown: None of our parents are particularly musical but we both grew up being obsessed with bands and the culture of music. NNF was birthed almost on a whim, in February 2004 – just something Amanda suggested we do as a creative project to bond over. It rapidly took on a life and momentum of its own. 100% Silk was conceived in 2010 but didn't officially get going until January 2011. The vision for that was far more specific; we'd been running NNF for years at that moment and knew roughly how we wanted to operate it. The NNF umbrella is pretty inclusive but there's styles that don't make sense in that universe. 100% Silk was initiated with that in mind.
If you could describe the sound of both labels in one sentence, what would you say?
Britt Brown: A terrible thing to request of a label-runner, but loosely: NNF – faded freeform electric hybrids SILK – raw pleasure body music
What's the inspiration behind your work?
Britt Brown: The music we like. Art. People.
What do you find most challenging about the work you do?
Britt Brown: Keeping artists happy. Persuading people to pay for something they can easily steal on the internet.
You started with tape releases and you strongly provide vinyl. How important is the internet for you business-wise?
Britt Brown: The internet is the fastest and cheapest way to disseminate news, and make the things you create available to the widest possible audience. We've never run our labels in an internet-less world so business-wise it's like a foundation, something I can't imagine not being there. Aesthetically and financially I think it's a much muddier asset.
On what future projects are you working on?
Britt Brown: A new website. An infinity of new records and tapes.
How does living in Los Angeles shape your work?
Britt Brown: By making us happy. It's a beautiful place to live, which alleviates the stress and strain of working 6 days a week, 10 hours a day.
Why do you think the music you release receives such positive reactions?
Britt Brown: Does it? Reactions come in every color of the rainbow. It's very mysterious to us why things are received the way they are. It's not something that's easy to feel connected to. Everyone's a critic; so are we.
How do you think your generation is going to leave its mark on music?
Britt Brown: By dismantling the record industry.
What advice would you give to producers, DJs who are just starting out?
Britt Brown: Try to do something new. Don't be a dickhead.
How important are the non-musical components of your releases like packaging and album art?
Britt Brown: We wouldn't run a label if it wasn't for the physical dimension. Packaging and art are basically the reason we started NNF; there's so much potential in that realm, and it's so often underwhelming. When considering buying a record I haven't heard before, 90% of the time the art is what sways me to either pull the trigger or leave empty-handed.