The playlist this week is the eighth in a series of playlists where we are checking out Canadian Independent Record Companies and the artists they represent. We have checked out Arts and Crafts, Constellation Records, Dine Alone Records, Last Gang Records, Mint Records, Paper Bag Records and Six Shooter Records so far. This month we are hearing from Canadian artists with Secret City Records. This label is one of my favourites for sure! So many of my personal favourite artists are with this label.

Secret City Records is a Montreal-based record label originally founded in 2006 to release Patrick Watson’s album, Close to Paradise. They keep the roster small and focused, believing that attention to detail and a career-oriented approach will yield the best long-term results; they support the idea of a self-reinforcing community, where everyone helps each other grow; and they think globally, ensuring that as many people from all over the world can discover and have access to their artists’ music. You will find that they are not limited by genre or format, nor by conventional thinking; that they strive to be fair, transparent, and humble; and that they’re always evolving and building. Their mission is to be a bridge between art and commerce, with unqualified respect and support for the artists’ vision. (Source: Secret City Records )

Secret City’s Justin West told this story in an interview for The Industry Observor. “The real story behind the label is actually quite funny. I went to high school with Patrick Watson and (Close to Paradise) was the first record we launched, and it put us on a huge rollercoaster ride in terms of we sold a ton of records, his name was out there and labels all over the world were looking to license the record from us. I was working for my dad at Justin Time and suggested we go see Patrick perform. We went to the show and dad was absolutely floored and he tried to sign him. But Patrick said, ‘I really want to do the deal, but I don’t want to be on a jazz label.’ My dad just said, ‘great. Justin will start a label.’ That’s how Secret City got its start. My dad saw my interest in the business, I love music, I grew up around it, but I think he saw a real opportunity. I was thrown into the fire but it all worked out.” (His father Jim, owns Justin Time Records)

There is another good article about the label on FYI Music News and OurBasement had an article about their 10th Anniversary 4 years ago as well.

The playlist is on Spotify and YouTube and is in chronological order beginning with a track from that first album for the label, Patrick Watson’s Close To Paradise. The end of the playlist has some new singles that have just been released. It is a pretty great playlist of music, I have to say. Enjoy!