Redbrick Records was formed as an offshoot of Redbrick Studios back in the late 70’s - at the height of Punk and New Wave. The studio was built in the basement of Swindon’s town hall (now a world renowned contemporary Dance studio), for the town’s borough council. The name Redbrick derives from the vast quantities of red building bricks borrowed and used by volunteers from the local technical college in customising the basement for use as a studio.
This facility was seized upon and driven by local singer/songwriter Dave James who was then working for the Borough Council. His role was to get the best out of this community project and beg or borrow equipment to develop it. With carpet samples stuck to the walls of the playing room for sound proofing, a small army of dedicated volunteers and equipment loaned indefinitely by recent Virgin Records signing local band XTC (Making Plans for Nigel, Senses Working Overtime) Swindon had its very own demo studio.
Many bands of all different musical styles went on to use the facility, either for demos or making their own limited edition singles. This included many demo sessions by our sponsors, local heroes and cult band XTC (who are currently releasing re-mastered demos made at Redbrick Studio at that time under the title of “Fuzzy Warbles” - visit www.ape.uk.net). With such a wealth of undiscovered talent using the studio it was decided to record a cross section of the various styles as a showcase of local talent. The resulting EP featuring 4 Swindon bands with their own styles “Swindon This Is Swindon” was released, and thus was Redbrick Records commercially born.
The EP achieved limited success commercially, but did achieve its goal of profiling local talent and was featured on the BBC Radio 1 play list for a week. Since that first release there have been numerous low-key self-financed releases achieving varied degrees success, and to this day Redbrick Records continues to maintain its original brief.
It remains a vehicle for those unsung, committed creatives who for whatever reason are not considered viable by an industry that continues to promote financial gain rather than creative development as their yardstick for success.
The Redbrick story continues to build on the heightened profile we have recently achieved with the critically acclaimed album by Dave James: “A Songwriters offering”. We are very excited by the prospect of his next commercial release - our first single, the catchy up-tempo melodic song “Please Don’t Laugh At Me When I Cry”, by “dee dee jay”. The potential of this song when it appeared on Dave’s first album was not lost on labels at the time, spawning not one but two productions: one masterminded by famed producers Sly and Robbie Mercury/Polygram. Redbrick Records sets out to encourage excellence from talented songwriters and performers helping them achieve recognition in an industry that continues to place so many obstacles in the way of the committed musician who simply seeks an outlet for their creations.
We aim to achieve this by sharing our 30 years-plus hard-won experience gained in this crazy but wonderful industry, offering a bridge between the artistic but invariably impractical, unworldly muso and the realities of the marketplace. The first step is the creation of an imaginative but practical label — that is Redbrick Records!