For those of you that follow this blog, you already know that ArtistView is all about bring artists together. We are the artists and the fans. Our passion lies in every note, every lyric, every picture, every scene, every dream ever had by anyone who just wants to do what they love. In our Behind the Scenes series, we get a chance to dig deeper to find out all the inner workings of an artists. I have had the privilege to pick the brain of Ryan Atefi, the head of the Washington, DC based record label OMUMO. He started his label in 2015 with the simple concept of friends who make music together make magic together. After listening to a sampling of his artists, I cannot deny that Ryan has created something beautifully unique.

 

 

 

 

 

Ok, I have to ask the first question that came to mind. How did you come up with the name OMUMO?
The name came to me in a dream. It has come to represent the union that we’ve established through our collective musical collaboration.

What made you decide to start a record label?
My friends and I have been recording quite a bit over the last 5-6 years. Throughout that time there have been a lot of different stylistic approaches depending on the combination of musicians. We all thought that it made sense to organize and release each project under a label because otherwise, it would kind of just get lost and forgotten eventually.

In a world where indie record labels are popping up everywhere, what do you offer your clients that sets you apart from the crowd?
I guess we’re not really going out of our way to be different, per se. With that being said, I don’t think any of us see this as a real means of ‘making it’ in any sense and, as such, our music reflects what we genuinely want to record. I wouldn’t even describe it as having clients so to speak. Everybody who records on the label is a close friend and somebody that I’m going to be recording music with anyways.

You aren’t just the head of OMUMO but you are also a client. Do you think that being a client helps you stay in touch with what the rest of your clients need?
For each project it is generally a more or less equal split of influence between each of the contributing artists so, in that regard, I would say that I am able to stay in tune with the needs of the people that I’m working with.

What do you look for in an artist to become a part of your OMUMO family?
It’s really more about personality than anything. There’s a lot of people out there that can play really well. The musicians I strive to become close with bring ideas to the table that represent who they are as a person.

Where do you see OMUMO in the next 5 years?
In the near future there are a few projects for 2017 that I want to wrap up and release. One of them is called Lasonic which is sort of a mish mash of old school break beats, scratching, and samples from generally good music. I’m really happy with this project so far and am sort of thinking of what direction I want to go with it. Another project, code named Van Luc at the moment, contains a lot of interesting live recordings done by my brother and another friend of ours from New York. Besides those, an instrumental album of piano music and guitar music is in line. Beyond that, only time will tell.

What bands/musicians inspired you to want to be a part of the music world?
Pixies, Pavement, Daft Punk, Django Reinhardt, Jimi Hendrix, Lilys, U2, Police, Debussy, Handsome Boy Modeling School, Ravel, Tribe Called Quest, Guided by Voices, Zeppelin, Floyd, Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Fleetwood Mac. This list goes on…

Who do you look up to musically?
Yanni… God

How do you see the music industry changing with the incline of indie labels like yours and the accessibility musicians have to their fans now?
The landscape for indie musicians is such that artists have access to their fans in a more instantaneous way than ever before. As a result of that, as well as the fact that artists can record higher quality music at lower costs, there are more indie bands and artists marketing their music now than ever before.

In your experience, what is the most important thing a band/musician should do to help them succeed?
Be good at what you do.

Fun Facts:
First Album purchased: Green Day – Dookie
Guilty pleasure album: Blink 182 – Dude Ranch
Last song you listened to: Daft Punk – Giorgio by Moroder (Editor Note: If you have not heard this song, you are missing out!)
Last concert you attended: Peter Hook and The Light
Next album you plan on purchasing: Trouble Funk – Drop The Bomb (so I can merry-go-round- with my other copy)
3 bands/musicians that everyone should be listening to: Lilys, Django Reinhardt, Claude Debussy

 

You can find all of the artists on OMUMO’s label on www.omumo.com.

Extended Plays is an ongoing music series of all the music that I stumble upon. I listen to the music, go with my gut and spill my honest and sometimes brutal opinion all over this blog. I hope you take the time to check out the artists I review for yourselves. I tend to believe that I am always right about everything but the most beautiful thing about music is that my opinion doesn’t matter to anyone but myself.

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