hip rock records


On this day in music history: June 4, 1942 - Capitol Records is established in Hollywood, CA. Founded by songwriting legend Johnny Mercer (“You Must Have Been a Beautiful Baby”, “Autumn Leaves”, “One for My Baby (and One More for the Road)”, “Hooray for Hollywood”), songwriter/film producer Buddy De Sylva, and music store owner Glenn Wallichs (Wallichs Music City), Mercer proposes the idea of starting a record label the year before to his friend Wallichs. A few months later, Mercer proposes the same idea to De Sylva who is an executive producer at Paramount Pictures. With the third partner aboard, the three get to work organizing their first releases and opening their first offices in a building south of Sunset Blvd. By July 1, 1942, the label releases its first nine singles. The label innovates new techniques in promoting the sales of records including being the first to distribute free records to disc jockeys for promotional purposes. Capitol quickly builds up an impressive roster of artists that includes Les Baxter, Les Paul, Peggy Lee, Stan Kenton, Les Brown, and Nat King Cole. Over the years that list of artists grows to also include Frank Sinatra, Stan Kenton, Judy Garland, Stan Freberg, Gene Vincent, Dean Martin, The Four Freshmen, Al Martino, The Kingston Trio, Nancy Wilson, The Beach Boys, The Beatles, Pink Floyd, Linda Ronstadt, The Band, Steve Miller Band, Bob Seger, Natalie Cole, Tina Turner, George Clinton, Duran Duran, David Bowie, Queen, Heart, MC Hammer, Garth Brooks, Radiohead, Coldplay, Foo Fighters and Katy Perry. Happy 75th Anniversary, Capitol Records!!!

#FBF Flashback to Eminem aka, The Real Slim Shady performing at House of Blues in 1999. | Photo by: Kelly Swift

Eminem hit the music scene in 1999 with his album, The Slim Shady LP. His following album, The Marshall Mathers LP, became the fastest-selling solo album in the United States history!


On this day in music history: September 22, 1980 - Geffen Records is officially established. Founded by record executive David Geffen, the label is distributed in conjunction with Warner Bros Records. It is not Geffen’s first record company, having established Asylum Records in 1970, then selling it to Warner Communications in 1975. The first artists signed to the Geffen label include Donna Summer, John Lennon and Elton John. Over the years, the labels roster includes artists such as Don Henley, Asia, Quarterflash, Aerosmith, Peter Gabriel, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Guns ‘N’ Roses, Sonic Youth, Cher, Jennifer Holliday, Kylie Minogue, and Irene Cara. The label’s distinctive logo is designed by famed graphic artist Saul Bass. When Geffen’s contract with Warner Bros ends in 1990, the company is sold to MCA Music Entertainment, and their parent company Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. (aka the Panasonic Corporation) for $800 million in company stock. The deal makes Geffen a billionaire and he stays on with the label until 1995 when he leaves to start Dreamworks SKG with Steven Spielberg and Jeffrey Katzenberg. Geffen Records eventually is  merged with Interscope and A&M Records in 1999 after Universal Music Group combines the labels with MCA Records. From 2003 on, all catalog and artists formerly on MCA and its numerous imprints carry the Geffen Records logo.


Blackstar - Respiration ft. Common (1998)

three of my favorite verses from three of my favorite emcees…