|Genre(s)||sykophunk, rap/hip hop, electronica, ambient/soundtrack|
|Country of origin||U.S.A.|
|Location||Hudson Valley, New York|
|Official website(s)||http://sykophunk.com/ http://www.sykophunk.net/|
Sykophunk Productions is an independent record label and production company founded in 2008 (legally set up in 2010) by Joseph VanBuren. Other than being a label, it also serves as the publishing and licensing company for all of VanBuren's projects and affiliate artists. According to the official website, the goals of Sykophunk Productions are to "make music that is interesting and has some substance to it, to get the music out to people looking for something new, and to help other artists and labels in similar positions." The company has created partnerships with other indie labels and artists, resulting in many works of collaboration. It has also began to take an active role in the areas of music licensing and soundtrack/score work for other media, as well as coordinating live events in the Fort Wayne, IN area, where the company is currently located.
On February 6, 2009, Sykophunk Productions began hosting Sykophunk Weekly on sykophunk.com, a tradition that still continues today. The page is updated every Friday with progress reports on all of the label's current projects. Randomly, and sometimes for months at a time, Sykophunk Weekly will also have free MP3 downloads available. This is usually used to lead up to an official release, as was the case in the weeks prior to the release of Mostly Recycled Vol. 1. Many of the songs only posted for one week become available at a later time. The 21-track joe DOE mixtape, Phuk Your Idea of a Mixtape, is still available for free download. Most of the songs on it were originally posted on Sykophunk Weekly. In September 2011, DOE's tracks released on Sykophunk Weekly also became available on his official Facebook page.
Soundtrack Work and LicensingEdit
In 2011, Sykophunk Productions began offering some of its tracks for licensed use in other media, including a catalog of instrumental music specifically for providing moods for TV/film and video games. The site sykophunk.net was launched for this purpose. According to the DIO blog, this has become an area of major focus for the company. In January 2012, Sykophunk Productions released Dark Moods, the first album in a series of cinematic instrumentals composed by Joseph VanBuren. In January 2014, Emotional Moods was released, the second album in the series. The company also secured a number of composing gigs for VanBuren, including two upcoming video games and an independent animated horror film out of the UK.
As of July 2014, Sykophunk Productions has 15 album/mixtape/EP releases available, all of which can be downloaded on a "name your price" basis. Only 6 of these releases have been made available on CD, usually for sale at live shows. There are a number of Sykophunk singles exclusively available as Youtube videos, including several tracks from joe DOE in 2014. Three upcoming releases have been announced, from artists joe DOE, Dostah Shilailee and the newest act on the roster known as Project D.O.T.A.
Charity Work and New Business ModelEdit
In late 2013, Sykophunk Productions began to focus heavily on giving to various charities. These efforts include taking donations for Heifer International (to help battle global poverty and hunger) and doing benefit shows that support causes to help the homeless. At all of their shows booked for 2014, the company will be accepting donations for local food banks and shelters.
In July 2014, Sykophunk Productions made all of its digital music available for free download. Shortly thereafter, the company announced that it would no longer do shows with tickets or a door cover unless it involved an established touring act. Follow-up comments by owner Joseph VanBuren stated that "at this point, I DO NOT want your money. What I want from you is your positive energy, support and help. If you like my music, then give your friends a copy or tell them where to get it. Come out to the shows & get hype for my set, and bring someone who's never heard of me. Like and share the posts from my artist pages and elsewhere online. I'm not part of the rEvolution Underground to make a profit - I'm here to leave a legacy and to make an impact in people's lives, the way music has done for me my whole life. All I ask in return is that if you dig any part of what I do, just help me get it out to more people like you and I, who appreciate art that is different and meaningful. Thanks."
Roster of ArtistsEdit
- joe DOE: Random Acts of Epic Awesomeness (LP, 2014)
- Joseph VanBuren: Emotional Moods (LP, 2014)
- Dostah Shilailee: Long Lost Experiments (LP, 2013)
- Triple Vision: Mic Checkmate (LP, 2012)
- joe DOE: Mostly Recycled (LP, 2011)
- Democalypse (LP, 2010)