Leo Records, 16 Woodland Avenue, Kingskerswell, Newton Abbot TQ12 5BB, Great Britain
2019 is a special year for Leo Records — it's our 40th anniversay. What started in 1979 by an enthusiastic amateur developed into a huge catalogue documenting improvised, experimental, free jazz, and new music. With four labels (Leo Records, Leo Records Laboratory, Golden Years of New Jazz, and FeetFirst) and about a thousand titles, it has become home for outstanding musicians such as Anthony Braxton, Sun Ra, Ivo Perelman, Simon Nabatov, John Wolf Brennan, Joelle Le'Andre, Slava Ganelin, Alexey Kruglov, and many others. Leo Records has become an encyclopaedia of new music from Russia, Siberia, Eastern and Central Europe, Canada, USA, and Brazil. We'll mark the anniversary at Cafe Oto in June, and in Moscow and St. Petersburg in October. Watch this space.
Music for the Inquiring Mind and the Passionate Heart: Leo Records is a small independent company producing highly original, innovative, improvisation-based new music; music that refuses to be submitted to the market forces, that goes against the grain of current wisdoms; music that asks questions, provokes debate, generates ideas. This is music that matters. Although the catalogue of Leo Records includes composers and musicians from all over the world, the origin of the musicians is not so important. What matters is the originality of the music.
The catalogue of Leo Records is over 500 CDs. The stalwarts of the label are Ivo Perelman, The Art Ensemble of Chicago, Anthony Braxton, John Wolf Brennan, Eugene Chadbourne, Marilyn Crispell, The Ganelin Trio, Joelle Leandre, Joe and Mat Maneri, Simon Nabatov, Sainkho Namchylak, Lauren Newton, Evan Parker, Ned Rothenberg, Tibor Szemzo, Sun Ra, Cecil Taylor, Reggie Workman, etc. Leo Records accommodate "established" musicians and veterans of new music, while Leo Lab is devoted to more experimental music and younger talents.
Leo Records was formed in 1979 and since then has become "one of the most significant independent labels of recent times..." (page 799, THE PENGUIN GUIDE TO JAZZ ON CD, LP & CASSETTE, by Richard Cook & Brian Morton).
It has almost "singlehandedly established the parameters of our understanding of new Russian jazz and improvisation."(page 1191, ibid).
"Without Leo Records, our perception of the international scope of improvised music would be vastly different.";(Coda Magazine).
Musicians of the month:
"This is profoundly philosophical music. This young man might just be a genius." (Jazzwise)CD of the month:
19 Standards (Quartet) 2003
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