I had the pleasure with talking with Liam, head of Partial Records. He was in town (Helsinki, Finland) with a bunch of records, and played at a rootical Intergalaktik Soundsystem dance. It was a blessed session. Now to the questions….
How did you end up starting a record label?
I had worked for a few record companies and labels before in distribution, promotion and things like that, so I was kinda involved anyway for a while. I decided that it would be something I should do, and it felt right.
I decided that it would be something I should do, and it felt right.
I was in the position where I had contacts and access to lots of music.
Where does the name Partial come from?
The name was… it was nothing really behind it. The word just came into my head for no reason, and I’d looked and seen that no other label was called Partial and that was it. And also I got problems with my vision so in England I’m known as partially sighted, so partial is a word thats sort of is always in my head. Really there was nothing more to it, I really didn’t put that much thought into it. It just seemed like a good idea and rather than think about something for three months I decided that that’s it. And also, of course in reggae, there’s a jamaican thing me nah partial, it’s kinda a phrase that’s used, so it really should be no partial or nah partial but it just looked better like that.
I’ve understood that many of your releases are re-releases. What’s the usual process for re-releasing tracks? starting from choosing what to release?
Normally the tracks that I’ve re-issued are personal favorites, tunes that I know aren’t available anymore, so simply I just approach the producer or artist and see if we can work something, and 9 times out of 10 it works at the moment. A lot of these tunes are tunes that have been in my record collection from, you know 91-93 or later and they’re just tunes that I really like, and sometimes the producers are people that I’ve known for a long time already and that makes things easier.
Liam of Partial Records doing some tight selection!
What got you into heavy dub reggae music? What inspires you?
Simply, I ended up going to a Jah Shaka show in the Rocket in ‘91 on Holloway Road in North London. Not by accident, but it happened and that was it, really. I still am into many types of music but that one particular path took me to see Jah Shaka and I’d already flirted a bit with reggae beforehand, but that was the starting point. I’d never seen or heard anything like that in my life. From around 91 to about 2000 I was completetly immersed in it, going to dances every week and I don’t think I listened to any other genre of music. In fact I sold every single record I had of any other genre of music. I now regret that, and I’ve been buying back the records I sold back then. But basically, it was Shaka.
But basically, it was Shaka.
What are your future plans for Partial Records? Heavy tunes coming up?
Yeah, there are! In fact this year I hadn’t planned to release as many as I already released. Theres been 13… no 15 releases out now, and theres already 13 ready to go. I’m just thinking about how I’m going to space them out. And some of them are certain artists and producers that I’m really very excited to be working with because they’re people that I’ve admired for so long. And on top of that… personally exciting for me, as I’m a kind of frustrated musician… I’ve played many musical instruments and it’s always been a hobby and I’ve never been that professional. However, I’ve been building my own riddims and I’ve got about 5 tunes coming out soon, that I’ve produced myself and I play all the instruments on. They’ve been voiced and they’re ready to go so it’s just a case of spreading things out. So it’s going to be a mixture of old stuff and new stuff again. For the rest of the year, it’s pretty much done!
Thanks a lot!
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edit. Facebook-link changed