Local musician Michael Trent (The Films, Shovels & Rope) recently assembled several new recordings for release under the label name Shrimp Records (see story at left for info on their first release, Bill Carson's The Great Whale/Say It; Don't Spray It). With an egalitarian approach, Shrimp will act as a headquarters for like-minded, similarly artistic musicians.
Shrimp is still taking shape from a foundation based on a mutually supportive situation between Trent and five colleagues: Carson, Cary Ann Hearst, Owen Beverly, Sadler Vaden, and Joel Hamilton.
"It'd be cool to grow the company, but we're starting off small and trying to get organized within ourselves," Trent says. "We have about 10 projects between the six acts in the works. We haven't hit any kind of 'Oh, shit!' moments yet. We've all been writing and recording for years, and helping each other with separate projects. We just decided to join up. It is more like a co-op than a serious label. We're trying to turn each others' fans onto each others' music. Once we have our product the way that want it, we want to get it out and get people to hear it. We're also planning on doing projects where we actually record all together. We're at a starting point."
Things are rolling, but Shrimp is not renting a big office space, hiring staffers, buying laptops, or building inventory shelving just yet. "We're really just trying to get as much done on our own as best we can," Trent says. "If we team up, put our heads together, and pool our resources, we'll get a lot more done than we ever did on some label where no one knew whose job it was to do anything."
Shrimp Records hosts a showcase at the Pour House on Sat. Sept. 19 celebrating the official release of Carson's solo album. Copies of the label's new 10-song local compilation (simply titled Volume 1) will be on hand as well. The disc features previously unreleased tracks from a number of projects conducted by the Shrimp team. It will be distributed to local record stores this month. Trent says the tracks are already streaming online at myspace.com/shrimprecordscharleston.