Independent record label Tight Lines are one of the most exiting things happening in Leeds right now. Their roster of artists include some of the best Leeds has to offer in contemporary jazz and they love it when things get a bit weird. They hold monthly jams at Hyde Park Book Club as well as a yearly festival called Salemango that is not to be missed!
Check them out here.
We caught up with Will from Tight Lines to talk about Salemango, compilation records and the Leeds scene…
So, What is Tight lines?
It’s fucking loads of things actually, it’s like a bit of an events company, it’s a bit like a multi media channel, it’s bit of a record label, we do a bit of stuff on the radio, it’s just loads of different things really. But the goal is record label, the goal is to record and release records, everything else is kind of bit of an off-shoot that helps us drive that… but that’s in essence what TL is. When we started it back in 2016 or whenever it was it was literally just a laugh, it was just us lot getting fucked all the time, going to gigs, playing gigs and writing music, we didn’t expect it to actually blossom into something reasonably serious.
Can you tell us about some of the records you’ve put out?
Haha, you’re testing me here! We’ve done a Skwid Ink record [The Skwids Are Here], we’ve done TLC001 [Tight Lines Compilation], we’ve got Tete de Pois’ Framework which came out last month, and Jasmine’s EP is out very soon, 5th of April. TLC002 is coming out in May, Hey Fish have got an album to be released, Garde Dog have got an Album to be released, HEV have got an EP to be released, so there’s fucking loads… We’ve only officially released 2 records I suppose, but there’s 5 to be released this year, so I mean we haven’t really done loads of Label stuff up until this year really when we’ve been “shit like lets actually officially release stuff you know“.
What place do you think TL holds within the Leeds music scene?
I think it holds the place of definitely being part of the jazz world and definitely part of the DIY world, I think it sits in between both of those things. Most of the people in Tight Lines are really into all music across the spectrum so I suppose it’s just that really.
Probably what we’ve self appointed as our main responsibility is to make sure that what’s going on here is being seen by other Cities really. The compilation is an idea for that, planning for the next compilation release TLC002 is kinda like a very big version of that. Salemango [Tight Lines’ yearly festival] is a celebration of the scene, that’s kind of the main idea of TL really, it’s a magnifying glass I suppose.
How have you seen the scene evolve since TL started out?
There are other people putting on nights, other people putting out sessions, other people are doing it and that was a goal really. A group that never really get credited which is a shame as they were kind of our main inspiration are 8mana. 8mana for me were kind of the first people that I saw actually putting on nights, there was definitely some kind of movement behind what they were doing. There was loads of youthful buzz about it and that made us go, ‘shit I really want to do something like that’, and I feel there’s probably a few people who are looking at TL and thinking the same.
We know people in 2nd and 3rd year [at LCoM] setting stuff up and giving platforms to their pals and their little micro scenes and putting on their nights, and I think thats a marker of development of something we maybe had something to do with, which is great! But Leeds has generally just been really good for music you know, there’s been gigs all the time, people like Lubi [Jovanovic - Soul Rebels] have been here forever.
You’ve mentioned Salemango, this is your 3rd year of doing it, whats the drive behind putting it on again?
For us Salemango is Tight Lines Christmas. It’s just this one day, or this year 2 days, where just everybody is there. It’s just the annual celebration for us of everything we’ve done.
It started out as just a bigger Chill Withers [Tight Lines event], that was the model for it, and its just something we love doing. But again, it was just a natural progression for us from Chill Withers, and then next year we’re hoping to put it in a field, we’re always just looking at taking things to the next level.
Who are you most exited about playing?
I’m very exited to hear Straight Girl headlining the opening night, I think it will just be great to see her playing the end of the night when its late and yeah, I’m looking forward to seeing that really.
Who else is playing, fucking hell… I’m looking forward to Stretchy Dance supply closing down the 2nd night. I can’t even really say, just everyone… As you know that whole festival is just all our mates and it’s all just gonna be great. Straight girl will definitely be something different, and stretchy because it’s always such a good time. But outside of that everyone’s just gonna be mad!
Other than Salemango, what’s the next big thing for TL?
The next big thing is definitely TLC002 which is the 2nd compilation, 15 bands all pressed to vinyl, all recorded and doing live sessions, a remix LP done by producers based in Leeds. Just another big ‘here we are’ basically. And that will be released at Salemango next year which is also going to be really big, it’s 2020 planning which is pretty far away but that’s definitely the next big thing!