Recently I was able to sit down with Josh Lowe and Kyle Cheleotis of Upstate Recordings and Management and discuss their plans for the future as well as their upcoming compilation release this coming Sunday at Springwell Baptist Church in Taylors. Also we discussed the fine details of human trafficking over some of Steak’n'Shakes new shake line-up as well as well as many other topics. You can read the interview below, and also Kyle I STILL HAVE YOUR DEBIT CARD! haha.

So the biggest thing right now is definitely the CD release party, can you elaborate on that and tell me all the details?
Kyle: It’s going to be at Springwell Church which is on Wade Hampton in Taylors. It starts at 7Pm and the doors are at 6. There will be 5 bands playing: My Brothers Keeper, The Answered, Sunset Revival, Kareless Kaution and Pioneer Progress. It’s $7.

Josh: It’s $7 at the door. You can get the tickets online. We’re doing pre-sale tickets; it’ll be like will-call. You won’t actually have physical tickets but you can actually get on the will-call list from our Big Cartel store. We’re actually doing two things: one is just a general ticket and the other is a package with a CD and a ticket. You can pick those up there, it’s at www.upstaterecordings.bigcartel.com.

So how much are the package deals?
Josh: If you want the CD and the ticket it’s $15 for both or just $7 for a ticket

The CD is a compilation CD right ? Can you tell me about it like how many bands are on it etc.
Kyle: It’s 15 tracks, and we try to get a good variety of music on there. We have some Southern Rock, some Acoustic, some Folky stuff, we have some harder stuff, some pop bands. The bands that are on it are The Answered, My Brothers Keeper, Valero, Kareless Kaution, Chris Waters, Pioneer Progress, Caleb Alexander and Cory Ward.

So you recorded every band thats on there?
Josh: We recorded every single band thats on the CD. We had a lot of inquiries from bands frpm like NC and GA that wanted to be a part of it, and they were like “We could send you a copy of our new single etc.” And when we first started putting it together we were both like “Yeah it would be great to have those bands on there”. But then we realized it kinda defeated the purpose because we wanted to promote us just as much as we wanted to promote the bands. If we had someone else’s recording on our CD it would be like “OK, we produced every track on this CD except _______”. It kind of defeated the purpose,  so we didn’t go with that.

You’re trying to do more of a self-contained thing.
Josh: Yeah, we wanted to do strictly bands that we’ve worked with. Most of the bands that are on it we’ve had some form of relationship with either recently or in the past. I know The Answered really well. When I played in a band a few years ago, some of those guys actually played in a different band and we would all tour together. So thats how we knew each other and that’s how I snagged those guys from Archville. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve slept on Daniel’s floor because we played shows with them in the area. Daniel actually taught me to surf. They introduced us to My Brothers Keeper. Pioneer Progress (Kyle’s band) of course we have a relationship with them (We all laugh). Valero, we just kinda got hooked up with them and because of them we got hooked up with Sunset Revival. A big network really, it’s kinda what it boils down to.

So are you managing any of the bands on there?
Kyle: We’re managing Sunset Revival and we’re talking to a couple of the other bands to see if we can start full-time booking for them. We’ve set up a couple of the bands with extra promo with friend companies like Earthprompt.com, they’re like a fair-trade promoter but they also promote bands to get people to get to their site. We’ve got a couple of our bands on there as well as us, and we try to promote all of the bands we work with regardless of whether they’re officially “Ours” or not.

So obviously the comp is the big thing on your plate, but what else do you have on your plate or on the horizon after the release?
Kyle: As soon as we get the comp released we’re just going to work on getting more new clients in the studio. For the last four months we’ve recorded every single weekend every single day. Now that we’ve finished the comp we’ve been focusing on promoting and artwork and all that type of stuff. Next is getting more clients in and just starting the cycle over

Josh: I think that another thing we’ll be focusing on is trying to put out another compilation CD. We threw this idea around for this CD when we first started this venture around last November or so. So it wasn’t until then that we even put anything into play and then January it just kinda took off. So between November and April we recorded nine different bands, 15 different tracks.

Yeah, it seems you guys kinda picked up the pace a lot, as far as momentum goes. I would talk to Kyle and I knew he was recording bands every now and then; but now it seems you guys have really got your shit together.
Josh: It’s funny because I was talking to Kyle on the way here, and I work on cars for a living and I love cars and I love working on cars but I don’t want to work on cars for a living. Kyles sits behind a desk and answers phones and he definitely doesn’t want to do that. So it would be absolutely amazing if we could make it to where this is all we did.

Kyle: self-sustaining

Josh: Right now things are young and we’ve been really, really blessed. Things have been great with what we’ve done and we’ve accomplished a lot but we’re not where we need to be in order to quit our day jobs.

Kyle: Once we get the studio consistently booked and running, we also want to venture into opening a venue and getting more into the actual management side of things. Doing more booking and promotions, maybe eventually doing a small label.

Didn’t you guys get asked to judge some kind of a music contest as a result of the company?
Kyle: We’re going to be co-hosting a battle of the bands sponsored by a church in GA.
Josh: We’re actually just found out that we’re going to be co-hosting a benefit show for a friend of mine named Haley Parris. She’s starting a non-profit organization to raise awareness of human trafficing here in the United States. She’s very passionate about that.

So she’s pro human trafficking? (We all laugh)
Josh:No, no, no, she’s NOT pro human trafficking! She is against it. She’s very passionate about it,  so she’s starting a non-profit organization to raise awareness of it and how to prevent it. She’s doing a benefit. It’ll be in July. The date’s not set in stone yet, but the date’s in July and it we’re gonna co-host it and bring in some of our bands to play it.

Cool, where at?
Josh: It’s going to be in Boiling Springs. She’s talking to the venue now. It’ll definitely be in Spartanburg.

Right on, so anything else you guys want to talk about while I’ve got you here?
Kyle: The only other thing we really have going on right now is our partnership with Earthcomp. Which is another cool organization which supports fair-trade all around the world. They’re good because they promote bands and they send out a montly newsletter featuring what the bands are doing that they work with; and then on their website they have all the bands and the music on there and little bios for each band at no cost to the band and it’s totally free promotion.

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