The following is a short questionaire done with Brad, who runs the ever impressive Mono Vs. Stereo label, where most of your favorite bands call home. It’s the beginning of a series of interviews that I will be conducting, where it allows people to get to know a little bit about those who help bring us the music we love so much.
JoshIVM: How exactly did Mono Vs. Stereo come to be?
Brad: I was working at Gotee Records as an A&R coordinator when I realized that if I was gonna continue working in the music industry I had to work with music I was extremely passionate about and that shared the same vision as myself. So I started making plans to leave Gotee and do the new label on my own. But then I decided it was worth pitching the idea to the owners of Gotee to see what they thought because if I could work with them I would learn a lot. Surprisingly they were in, I thought they wouldn’t be since past “other labels” that they supported besides Gotee hadn’t worked.
JoshIVM: Did you have any other record label or music industry experience before starting up MVS?
Brad: While I was in college I ran one of the college rock radio stations and was heavily involved in the local scene in PA. I worked with a few local bands, one of which was the precursor to The Evan Anthem called Devoted Molded. I then relocated to Nashville the fall after graduating college and interned at Gotee for 1 1/2 month. I then got hired to do internet marketing and did that for a year. Next I moved on as an A&R coordinator/Product Manager at Gotee and did that for a year. After that came Mono Vs Stereo. It’s a pretty quick intern to label president story.
JoshIVM: Where does the label call home?
Brad: Franklin, TN.
JoshIVM: Is there any particular meaning or story behind the label’s name?
Brad: I just wanted it to sound cool and different. I had always dreamed about starting, and naming, my own record label. I had a book full of ideas, and for a while we were running with “Records On Repeat”. But then one day I was IM-ing with my brother and I was thinking of audio references like “Mono”, “Stereo”, “Analog”, and “Digital”. Next thing I know the name and sequence of those words popped in. I also used those other references to name our publishing company which is Analog Versus Digital.
JoshIVM: Does MVS have a motto/vision statement?
Brad: The revolution will begin in the blink of an eye.
JoshIVM: How many people are currently on staff?
Brad: Myself, interns, and then I utilize 3 people that also work for Gotee Records.
JoshIVM: What’s your personal favorite release of MVS so far?
Brad: Of course I’m gonna say “all of them” but it’s true. If I don’t love it, I’m not gonna put it out. Each release has a personal story with it making each one a favorite and something to remember.
JoshIVM: What is the best selling release on the label so far?
Brad: The Showdown’s debut album “A Chorus Of Obliteration” and the self-titled debut from Maylene and the Sons of Disaster are my highest as of now.
JoshIVM: In your opinion, what is the biggest accomplishment MVS has reached in their short time of existence?
Brad: Just being able to sign killer bands that we love. It’s hard to believe that these bands want to work with us and I truly appreciate that. Also helping to resurrect rock and metal that has southern influences like The Showdown, Maylene and the Sons of Disaster, and even Gasoline Heart. As well as all the killer press that was given to The Showdown’s and Maylene’s debut albums.
JoshIVM: Obviously there are tons of labels out there and no one gets every band they want. What band out there, no matter the genre or label, would you have loved to have on MVS?
Brad: Bands that are no longer around like Bleach, The Prayer Chain, Seven Day Jesus, and Plankeye.
JoshIVM: What are some non-MVS bands that have been dominating your stereo as of late?
Brad: Johnny Cash – American V, Pearl Jam – s/t, Buckcherry – 15, Under the Influence of Giants, Saves the Day – Sound the Alarm, Shooter Jennings – Electric Rodeo, Goo Goo Dolls – Let Love In, AFI – DecemberUnderground, Fair – The Best Worst Case Scenario, The Bronx – II.
JoshIVM: How about underground, unsigned bands? Any you’d recommend for us to check out?
Brad: That’s a secret because I may be signing some of those but I would definately say
Mike Dunn and the Kings of New England.
JoshIVM: What is the current goal that MVS is trying to attain?
Brad: World domination one day at a time.
JoshIVM: What are some of your personal interests besides music?
Brad: My wife, my dogs, and movies.
JoshIVM: If you weren’t running MVS, what would you be doing?
Brad: Not sure…this has always been my dream.
JoshIVM: How does your faith play into your work at MVS?
Brad: It keeps me grounded and brings my focus back where it needs to be when I lose focus. It also fuels my passion for music.
JoshIVM: Where does MVS stand in regards to faith and the bands you represent?
Brad: I’d like for most of my bands or most of their members to be grounded in faith, but I’ve never said I’m a Christian label, some albums I don’t even put out in the Christian market. But I love working with Christian artists because I feel like they can make the best art.
JoshIVM: Has God taught you any lessons through running this label?
Brad: This is a business and there is law aspect to it, and that has 2 sides. There is the letter of the law and the spirit of the law. Sometimes you might be right in the letter of the law, but in the spirit of the law is how you will be remembered. Like if technically on the business side you had every right to sue or fight for what you thought was yours, but the spirit of the law would say to let it go and maintain your integrity. I have chosen to run MVS based on the spirit of the law, and that’s tough at times but in the end it will matter.
JoshIVM: Anything you’d like to share/promote to our readers?
Brad: Go buy Gasoline Heart – You Know Who You Are. An album you won’t regret checking out, I promise. And stop stealing music, kids don’t realize that it’s killing the very thing that supports the bands they love.