Independents’ Day II: Charting A New Standard For Success

Independents’ Day II: Charting A New Standard For Success


Topics covered include proven strategies in advancing an independent label's development, including strategic planning, finance, domestic and international marketing and distribution, creating sales demand for records, touring, merchandising and ancillary markets, branding, product cross-promotion, Internet presence and deal-making.


This fascinating and important program features four hard-working players in the independent label market. Each reveals the not-so-secret ingredients for success in independent music and shares his experiences – good and bad.

Also addressed: various challenges facing independent labels, including A&R, branch distribution, radio and retail, and building into a recognized national and international trademark / brand.

Producers, Artist Managers and Artist Reps
Record & Music Publishing Executives
Music Attorneys

Major areas of negotiation, including:

  • Proven strategies in advancing an independent label’s development
  • Strategic planning
  • Finance
  • Domestic and international marketing and distribution
  • Creating sales demand for records
  • Touring
  • Merchandising and ancillary markets
  • Branding
  • Product cross-promotion
  • A&R
  • Branch distribution
  • Radio and retail
  • Building into a recognized national and international trademark / brand


Alan Beck, President ITP Records & Pacific Concert Group
Rory Felton, PartnerThe Militia Group
Joe Poindexter, Director of A&R Elementree Records
Ricardo Vinas, Owner Thrive Records

PROGRAM DATE: March 12th , 2005
PROGRAM TIME: 1 hour and 18 minutes (78:27)


Call 818-769-7007 or contact NARIP




Alan Beck formed ITP in 1996. Realizing that record companies across the nation had turned their backs on the majority of the top urban/R&B soul groups and artists who recorded between 1960 and 1984, Beck set out to change this.

After establishing the Pacific Concert Group in 1992 to promote R&B classic soul concerts, Beck began to meet, book and interact with many legendary artists. These artists shared a desire to record new music and see their old music released to the public. After seeing and hearing many of them at his shows, Beck realized that most of the artists still had their vocal skills, and in many cases sounded just as good, if not better, then they did in the ‘60s and ‘70s. With this realization crystal clear, Beck formed ITP Records.

A frequently asked question is, what do the initials ITP stand for? The answer to this question has historical significance. During the ‘50s and ‘60s, musicians used to listen to music and come up with one of two conclusions. Either the music was “in the pocket” meaning that the music sounded right, or the music was out of pocket” and the music sounded wrong. If it was “right” the session was completed and pressed to vinyl. If it was “wrong” the entire ‘take’ was re-recorded. This form of evaluating the quality of the music was so relevant in the R&B world that it was the highest compliment to tell any label, producer or artist that his music was “in the pocket”. So, since the goal of this label is to produce and compile only the very best sounding music, the name In The Pocket Records or ITP Records was chosen.

As a result of promoting live ‘rhythm and blues’ concerts from 1992 to 1996, Beck soon realized that this era of music was being ignored and the original recordings of these ‘60s, ‘70s and even ‘80s artists were sitting on shelves and not being marketed. After each live concert, fans would come to Beck and ask him where they could find old and new recordings by the artists who performed at his shows. It was by popular demand that ITP began its own roster of artists which today include Bloodstone, GQ, Barbara Lynn, Sly Slick and Wicked, M.C. BLVD, The Superbs, Barbara Lewis, Gene Chandler, Barbara Mason, The Escorts, The Delegation, Garland Green, Ron Preyer of The Younghearts, Carl Carlton and others. While not all of these are artists are under contract or have recorded full albums with ITP Records, all of them have been in the studio with ITP Records and have worked under the musical production team led by producer Charles Crews who also serves as the musical conductor for The Pacific Concert Group.

ITP Records has also licensed rare musical tracks by such great artists as Smokey Robinson, The Manhattans, Billy Stewart, The Whispers, The Temptations, Lenny Williams, War, Eddie Holman and many more. Most of these artists appear on the exclusive ITP Records Underground Oldies Series or on other important ITP compilations. In 2001, Alan decided to take his passion for “Rare R&B Oldies” to the airwaves and created the weekly Underground Oldies Radio Show. “As host of the show, it has brought me even closer to the audience and has given ITP Records an added vehicle to promote our in-house catalogue and our arena concerts that we produce regularly. It has been the perfect way to build Internet sales, promote store sales and reach people that I normally could not afford to reach”. The show encourages live requests and dedications, runs concerts and CD contests and is currently heard in the greater Los Angeles area each Sunday night, and Sunday afternoons in Phoenix, AZ. The show also reaches an international market through web streaming. For more information on Alan’s radio network please go to WWW.ITPRECORDS.COM.

ITP Records is one of the fastest growing labels in the country and has some of the most interesting music on the market today. You can purchase ITP music nationwide at Tower Records, Wherehouse Records, Musicland, and at other national music chains.

Beck can be reached at:
Alan Beck c/o ITP Records Inc.
269 S. Beverly Drive, Suite 427
Beverly Hills, CA 90212
(323) 966-4455


I caught the ‘music bug’ as an early teen and haven’t slowed down since. I started The Militia Group, an independent record company, 5 years ago with my partner Chad Pearson. We partnered up with James Cho a few years later. Recent artists include Copeland, Lovedrug, The Rocket Summer, Rufio, Acceptance, Brandtson, Cartel, etc. We now have 11 employees, release an album a month, created a sales consultation company (Playback Entertainment), and sub-distribute other independent labels into the U.S., Canada and Japan.


Joe Poindexter is the Director of A&R for Elementree Records, the Geffen imprint label owned by Jonathan Davis of Korn. Joe’s career in the music business began as a College Representative for the Universal Music Group, and he has since gained experience in sales, marketing, distribution, and radio promotion at Columbia Records and Q Prime Management. Joe has been doing A&R at Elementree for 2 years now, and works with Deadsy and the Suicide Girls.


In 1992 Ricardo Vinas co-founded America’s first electronic music label, Moonshine Music. From its modest origins, Moonshine exploded into a fully staffed company with multiple releases per year. After severing his ties with Moonshine, in 1997 Vinas funded Thrive Records. A joint venture with Sire/Warner Bros. Records — the label helmed by legendary A&R man Seymour Stein – Thrive fearlessly launched the highly successful Global Underground mix series, which allowed the upstart label to work with the likes of Sasha, John Digweed, Danny Tenaglia and Nick Warren, among others. Thrive signed superstar DJ/Producer Paul Oakenfold to an exclusive US deal – Oakenfold’s Gold certified album, Another World, was the result. Ricardo Vinas has remained instrumental in the development of Oakenfold’s career, most recently A&R-ing Paul’s artist debut album, Bunkka, and signing an exclusive US distribution deal with his Perfecto label. Paul Oakenfold received a 2005 Grammy nomination for his latest Thrive Records album release, Creamfields.

Thrive and Ricardo Vinas have also been very active in the film soundtrack arena. Mr. Vinas has produced and released the soundtrack albums for Darren Aronofsky’s ?, winner of the 1998 Sundance Film Festival Best Director Award, the Oscar-nominated and highly acclaimed Christopher Nolan film, Memento, featuring new music from Radiohead, Bjork, David Bowie and Paul Oakenfold, Darren Aronofsky’s Requiem For a Dream, and the Paul Oakenfold composed Swordfish. In 2003, Thrive released John Digweed’s first original score album, Stark Raving Mad, from the motion picture produced by Lawrence Bender, as well as the soundtrack albums for the 2003 Sundance favorites, Confidence, Gaspar Noe’s Irreversible, scored by Daft Punk’s Thomas Bangalter, and Austin Chick’s XX XY. The Real Cancun, from the producers of MTV’s The Real World, and last year’s Cruise/Wagner highly anticipated film, Shattered Glass.

Thrive recently signed Foo Fighters’ drummer Taylor Hawkins to a solo artist deal. Other Thrive artists include the critically acclaimed Roni Size, Electronic duo Deep Dish, Paul Oakenfold, Infusion, and superstar DJs Seb Fontaine, Sandra Collins, Sander Kleinenberg, Mark Ronson, Hernan Cattaneo, as well as former Underworld member Darren Emerson.

Program music courtesy of Sparks & Silhouettes


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