Domino Records was already a well-known entity in the music business when founder Laurence Bell decided he was ready to move into publishing.
Established in 1993 with his partner, Jacqui Rice, the London, England-based record label built itself a slow-but-steady reputation for interesting independent music with a slightly outsider aesthetic. By the time they signed Glaswegian band Franz Ferdinand a decade later, however, the label had opened an office in New York (Domino now also has divisions in Germany and France) and secured an international reputation.
When he founded Domino Publishing in London in 2005 (the Brooklyn office opened in 2006), Bell decided he wanted to buck the trend he saw in record labels starting publishing companies in order
“More and more frequently, we find ourselves looking to Canada for talent.” – Jeff Pachman of Domino Publishing
“A lot of serious music lovers have the utmost respect for Laurence Bell and the repertoire he has released,” says Jeff Pachman, Domino Publishing’s General Manager in North America. “That definitely helped open doors when we started building Domino Publishing as a stand-alone entity.”
Domino Publishing has grown quickly since then, cementing a solid reputation as a boutique publisher with a serious roster of artists encompassing genres from electronic, rock and indie (including The Jesus and Mary Chain, Siouxsie and the Banshees), to world music (Buena Vista Social Club and Ali Farka Toure, among others).
They also represent a growing handful of Canadian artists, including Doug Paisley, Junior Boys (Jeremy Greenspan and Matthew Didemus), and BRAIDS (Raphaelle Standell-Preston, Taylor Smith, Austin Tufts and Katie Lee), among others. Both Domino Records and Domino Publishing now represent Austra’s Katie Stelmanis as well.
“More and more frequently, we find ourselves looking northward for talent,” says Pachman, “and a
“A lot of credit is due to the quality of Canadian songwriters and the music that is coming out of Canada.” – Jeff Pachman of Domino Publishing
For now, Pachman says the company is keen to keep building a quality roster of artists, even in light of the challenges facing the music business. “There is non-stop chatter about the death of the record industry,” he admits, “but as forward-thinking publishers, we’ve been able to grow fast. We have been able to build a house on a great foundation, and we have been extremely proactive in terms of finding opportunities for writers.”
As he looks forward, Pachman says he expects the Domino Publishing to outgrow its status as a “boutique publisher” while staying true to its roots. “I think we’re going to surprise people in the coming years.”