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October 20, 2010

Northern-Spy Entertainment

“The team that brought back ESP moves on to form new company: Northern-Spy Entertainment”
I guess my main question is...  What is happening with ESP-Disk'?
The staff responsible for resurrecting the iconic record label ESP-Disk’ in recent years -- Tom Abbs (General Manager), Douglas McGregor (Chief Financial Officer), Adam Downey (Director of Promotions) and Robert Keefe (Publishing Administrator) -- have all resigned their positions and struck out on their own to launch a new partnership, Northern-Spy Entertainment, LLC.
In the team’s last three years at ESP, they oversaw an unprecedented expansion of the label’s activities, with over sixty CD and vinyl releases produced in their tenure, including the first new recordings for the label in 35 years. The business was also expanded to include a distribution company, a retail store and a live music series, which culminated in this summer’s Albert Ayler Festival on Roosevelt Island.  Recent articles in Jazz Times and The Wall Street Journal, “ESP-Disk’ - Back in Business” and “The Artists Alone Decide - In a New Era”, hailed the team as bringing the label back to its original 60’s glory and at the same time rectifying years of mismanagement. But underneath this success, a series of longstanding labor disputes got in the way, and after months of failed negotiations the staff made the fateful decision to move on and start their own company.
Beginning right where they left off, the Northern-Spy team aims to position themselves as a major force on the Brooklyn music scene. The new venture will bring forth a 360° approach to music business, offering artists a wide array of production, distribution, promotions, licensing, publishing administration, and booking services. With an aggressive release schedule catering to the independent music scene and its strong industry ties, Northern-Spy is positioned to make waves in the coming months. Like the multitude of artist run-labels that came before it, Northern-Spy is buoyed by the team’s diverse experience on the music scene. Abbs is an accomplished recording artist with records out on Delmark, AUM Fidelity, 482 Music and even ESP, and has run a non-for-profit arts organization in New York for the last decade. McGregor is an accomplished guitarist, vocalist and recording engineer who runs his own studio in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Downey is a working DJ and bassist on the Brooklyn scene and Keefe is a sought after DJ, a film buff and writer.
The label's first artist signings include Colin Langenus from USAISAMONSTER, Arrington de Dionyso from Old Time Relijun, and the Italian fire-music team, Jooklo Duo. Releases will be in stores Tuesday, November 16th.
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