Australia has produced a glut of excellent DJs and producers in recent years, and Andrew Kornweibel is one of them. Whether he’s producing as Friendly, collaborating with Ra Khahn as Milke or running his label Gulp, he’s one well worth keeping your eye on. We’ve already tipped Milke in our Ones To Watch feature – now Andrew tells all about Gulp, and delivers a downloadable MP3 mix to show what the label’s all about…
When did you set up Gulp?
I started up Gulp back in ‘98 to get my music out in Australia. Then I got signed to Zomba and stopped it to focus on writing music. But after I split with Fat Records in 2006 I decided to start Gulp up again, just to get my back catalogue out there. One thing led to another and all of a sudden I had four great acts signed to the label, and we’re now licensing stuff to Kitsune and Ministry of Sound, and we’re in the club charts, getting blogged loads and on Radio 1 and xfm.
How would you describe Gulp’s output?
It’s quite varied – we’re not a niche label that just focuses on one genre, like say Toolroom or Finger Lickin’. We’re mostly a label that’s artist focused, and we’re just trying to put out music by really great artists in their particular area, whether it’s the techno of Joe and Will Ask, the indie-electro of Milke, or the fucked-up rappy screamy pop of Black Peter Group. We release quite a bit though, at least one release a month, plus loads of remixes, exclusives and one-offs through different channels to keep it moving.
What’s been your biggest seller?
My old track The Bump And Grind – every time I put it out it sells another bucket load of units. I did a remix of it recently and that ignited it all over again. I guess it’s deemed a classic that keeps on working. She Says by Milke also keeps selling well. We’ve got some great stuff coming up that’s going to totally blow all of that out of the water though, which is good. Bring on the new shit!
What’s the hardest thing about running a label?
You have to remember a million tiny things to do every day. There is always an email to be sent, and always someone to chase up about something.
What’s been the worst moment in Gulp’s history?
I can’t really think of one. We’ve signed every artist we’ve been after, and got the deals we’ve wanted with the distributors and partners we wanted. I guess the demise of vinyl really makes it tough, because it’s harder to break even on the releases. And also the illegal downloading of music makes it really hard as well, but these are just changes in the climate that have to be dealt with, and we have to find new ways of operating.
What are Gulp’s plans for the next 12 months?
We’ve got massive singles coming out for Joe and Will Ask after their Kitsune release in January. Milke have a new single in March with remixes from Daniel Wang and Designer Drugs that is set to be big. Plus there’s new Andrew Friendly stuff featuring Fast Eddie, the old-school rapper. Black Peter continues to create a racket, and we’ll be getting more of his bits out as well. I suppose we should consider doing a compilation soon too!
How do you go about tracking down new artists to sign?
All my artists I’ve discovered through MySpace – I’ve got in touch and signed them before everyone else woke up to how amazing they are. I’ve had some really great artists approach me too, or had tips from friends on music that they’re listening to. It’s just a case of finding music that resonates with you, and seeing the potential, even if they’ve only got a MySpace of 20 friends and just a few tracks.
Any advice for any budding producers looking to sign to Gulp?
Be yourself, and create something original with loads of personality. There’s not too much room for faceless club music these days – I think there has to be a complete package to go with it. Even if it’s art-school techno like Joe and Will, they’ve got really great personalities that shine through in everything they do. You can see a press pic of them and know exactly what is going on. It’s important I think.
Any other bits and pieces going on you want to tell us about?
Just check out the acts on Gulp, get down and see us DJ or perform soon.
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