Newtons in London
June 21, 2012
Tej and Jo Newton, pka The Newton Twins and the writer-producers behind “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill” fly into London on Monday 25th June where they will spend a fortnight laying down tracks for Dionne Bromfield (pictured, Amy Winehouse’s prodigy / god-daughter), Eliza Doolittle, Tyler James, recent runner-up on The Voice (UK) and District 6 artist Meleka. They will also find time to drop in on various label A&Rs keen to share the magic touch for artists such as Pixie Lott, Emeli Sandé and newcomer Ella McMahon.
"The Miseducation" has become one of the most critically acclaimed albums of the last quarter-century, went 20 times platinum and won 5 Grammy awards. It is testament to the seminal qualities of the album that many of today's top artists and / or A&Rs seek to make the "next miseducation album". The Newton Twins are looking to do just that.
Sync opportunities with CueSongs deal
January 23, 2012
District 6 have teamed up with CueSongs Director and long-standing Peter Gabriel associate, Ed Averdieck for a licensing deal that includes a sizeable chunk of the District 6 catalogue, making it easily and instantly available for a wide range of online licensing.
Ed Averdieck says, "only a relatively small proportion of copyrights earn licensing income in syncs at the moment. But as companies’ advertising and marketing budgets increasingly shift on line, we predict that, of the 250 million websites that exist today, a proportion of them will licence music if it is reasonably priced and easy to access".
Cue's plan is to create a new revenue stream for artists and writers, consisting of hundreds of thousands of smaller sized online transactions, providing ready to go music in seconds.
Terror Danjah signs up
January 23rd, 2012
Terror Danjah may not be a household name; he’s not as well known as Wiley or Dizzee Rascal, yet he’s considered by the grime cognoscenti to be the best grime producer of all.
Terror works around the tempo of 140 bpm, and his music is part of the post-garage movement of grime. He has worked with both MCs and vocalists, from Nasty Crew, Skepta, Wiley and Kano, to Tinie Tempah, Wretch 32, Shystie and Mz Bratt. In 2011 Terror’s “Full Attention” featuring Ruby Lee Ryder performed well at radio and was play-listed on 1 xtra.
His productions are instantly recognizable from the Gremlin cackle he uses as an audio-logo to indicate a Terror Danjah production, much like Timbaland’s singing/beat boxing on his early productions. And the comparison with Timbaland doesn’t stop there, both producers worked with a signature palate of sounds; both producers use shifting, syncopated rhythms.
Despite the pared down palette he uses, Terror’s productions are full of brilliant ideas, complex rhythms and pop hooks and until now, despite being lauded by those in the know, he’s been under appreciated. Time for all that to change …
Submotion Orchestra's Finest Hour
January 18, 2012
Leeds-based seven piece Submotion Orchestra have signed the publishing to their debut album ‘Finest Hour’ to District 6.
Bewitchingly beautiful, perfectly crafted and conveying a sense of dramatic melancholy, the album is at once classic yet is utterly current.
Formed in Leeds in '09 the band originally came together when Dom Howard (aka Ruckspin) and hip label Ranking Records were commissioned to write and perform a live dubstep piece in Yorkminster Cathedral.
Rising to the challenge, Ruckspin and Tommy Evans brought together an all-star cast from the Leeds music scene to create what would become Submotion Orchestra. This was the first time a full range dub-style sound system had been brought into a venue of this kind and was heralded as a success. And ever since, playing live has been a key strength of the band.
Radio support has come from Trevor Nelson and Gilles Peterson on Radio 1, Mista Jam on 1xtra, and got picked up by LA tastemaker station KCRW in the US. DJ support has come from the likes of Laurent Garnier, Oneman (Rinse) DJ Flight (Metalheadz/Rinse), Simbad (Defected), Tayo (Kiss), plus Ashley Beedle and Rocky.
The band has built an old fashioned word-of-mouth live fan base, touring the UK and Europe to sell-out audiences, and taking in The Big Chill, Latitude, Outlook and Bestival festivals.
“Submotion Orchestra are on the rise, and for good reason” Q
Roy Harper at 70
July 7, 2011
"Led Zeppelin sang about him. Kate Bush sang with him. He sang lead for Pink Floyd. Fleet Foxes and Joanna Newsom adore him. A survivor of the golden age of folk rock troubadours, Roy Harper has bequeathed a 45 year trail of modern anthems that exemplify the singer's historic role in society, as both a finger-pointing revelator of injustice and the harbinger of earthly paradise".
Since signing a publishing deal with UK folk legend Roy Harper a little over a year ago, District 6 are genuinely proud to represent what is widely regarded as one of the very best and most accomplished bodies of work of the genre of all time. So much has been said and written of Roy over the years, and the UK is currently awash with a new round of praise and plaudits to coincide with Roy's 70th birthday.
We are overseeing the current press campaign, the rolling out of his back catalogue digitally, a physical re-issue programme, a 70th birthday show at the Royal Festival Hall, a UK tour next year and just possibly a brand new album. Exciting times for us all. To tie the entire program together, we are commissioning a covers album of some of Roy's most enduring, relevant and classic works. The list is of artists involved is already, as you might expect for such a project, very distinguished – watch this space for further details.
District 6 engage services of young A&R whiz-kid
May 23, 2011
When District 6 signed Just Blaze to their publishing roster in 2009, the first person on the phone to District 6 offices was Ed Swinburne, pictured far right with District 6 owners Paul Vials (left) and Ed Ashcroft. Ed, originally from Newcastle, now based in London, has by no means risen the music industry ranks in a conventional manner. Not for Ed packing boxes, making tea on Kensington High St or running errands around Soho, much less working his way up the major label chain of command.
Instead Ed, still just 21, got himself a job fresh out of school at online urban radio station HHB in the northeast, where before long he was interviewing music and business mogul Melvin Brown (co-founder with Akon of U.S label Konvict Muzik). Melvin, always quick to spot talent, recruited Ed and had him working on various projects, doing radio, TV and media promotions for his artists. From this a business partnership soon flourished, culminating in the formation of "So Star Entertainment".
In no time at all Ed has grown So Star into a bona fide music company with an established global roster of writers, producers and artists, including Thundacatz, Mikey J and Ryan Munroe. The company is also currently developing a number of new projects including TV, media & sport ventures.
18 months on from that first phone call and District 6, on the look out for an A&R scout with his ear to the ground and the ear of A&Rs around the world, have put their faith in the A&R prodigy, and engaged his consultation services with the brief of pitching District 6 writers, artists and songs into open projects and labels in Europe and the US.
District 6 forge pan-european deal with Genuine Music Group
April 4, 2011
District 6 have signed off on a pan-european deal with LA based Genuine Music Group, headed up by Greg Johnson, marking the beginning of what both parties believe will be a long and successful partnership. Genuine represent producers Pro J, Jake 1 and Tha Bizness, alongside man of the moment DJ Khalil (pictured) and songwriter Damon Sharpe.
Khalil is arguably the hottest producer in the world right now. The last few years have been ground-breaking for Dre's in-house producer at Aftermath, producing tracks for multi-platinum artists Jay Z, 50 Cent, The Game, Talib Kweli, Pitbull and Drake, to name just a few. Most recently he delivered 4 tracks for the new Eminem album, Recovery. Production credits are already in the bag for Dre’s Detox and now Khalil is looking to bring his prodigious talent over the pond, both to the burgeoning UK urban scene but also into the pop arena. A cut is already confirmed for Pro Green's second album.
Pro J is best known for his association and work with multi platinum, grammy award winning artist and songwriter Robin Thicke. Credits also include Lil Wayne, Usher, Christina Aguilera, Tupac, Will Young and En Vogue.
Tha Bizness is J-Hen aka Henny & Dow Jones, originally from Seattle, Washington, with credits including 50 Cent, G-Unit, Bishop Lamont, Chris Brown, T-Pain, Busta Rhymes, Trey Songz & Young Money
Jake 1 was part of the original G-Unit set up, also from Seattle, and has produced for 50 Cent, Freeway, Kardianl Offishall, De La Soul, T.I, Bootsy Collins and Ca$his.
Damon Sharpe is an award-winning music producer and songwriter who works in LA. He has contributed many recognizable songs to the pop pantheon and has been involved with the production of many albums that cumulatively have sold over 32 million copies. Probably best known for his collaboration with J Lo, "Love Don't Cost A Thing", he has also worked with Kylie Minogue, Anastacia, Kelly Rowland, Monica, Ginuwine & Amerie. Upcoming releases include JLS & Leona Lewis.