On Recording for Major vs. Independent Labels Matthew Shipp

Matthew Shipp
Photo by Laurie Stalter

The only experience I have had with a major was with the David S Ware Quartet on Sony. It was horrible. You could never get anyone on the phone. When you got someone’s secretary you were told they were out getting hot chocolate. A month after the record was released we noticed we were seeing no airplay—we found out they had never serviced any radio stations. Also, it took us about six months to get paid. We were told the paperwork was processed right after the recording date. After not getting paid for six months we found one nice lady at Sony who did a trace and found out the paperwork was never filled—and of course the person who was originally supposed to file the paperwork was mad we went behind his back. I wonder how he would feel if Sony had forgotten to give him his $200,000 a year salary for doing nothing? Independents are much better because they actually care about the music. I record for an independent that has great distribution.