Barely a year into the physical store and its record producing arm, both husband and wife have quit their daytime jobs to attend to the growing Backspacer Records catalogue.
Prominently displayed at the center are three releases – the self-titled debut of Peryodiko, "Waiting for the End to Start" by Itchyworms, and "Humanidad" by the Dong Abay Music Organization.By the end of 2021, all the other Original Pilipino Music (OPM) re-issues and whatnot will be replaced by an ever-growing catalogue of releases under the Backspacer Records imprint.
“We’ve got 20 more records that will be out before the end of the year,” smiled Robert Tuazon, one-half of Backspacer Records’ dynamic duo, with the other being his wife, Tasha.Although Tasha once interned at Sony Music Philippines, she was recently sucked into her husband’s music/record madness and she went all-in into the creation of not only one of the metropolis’ most popular independent record shops, but also now a fledging record label.
Backspacer isn’t the first local indie store turned label. Toti Dalmacion began doing this in the 1990s. Local punk and hardcore rock store Mutilated Noise from Noel Francia (with its uber cool physical store in San Antonio Village in Makati) along with Dangie Regala’s Still Ill Records have been doing this for years now, as has Jay Amante’s The Grey Market. headtopics.com
And obviously, there is room for a lot more.“It started out as a hobby of Rob’s that got out of control,” wryly offered Tasha. “So we found a way to channel that hobby into something that would not only return the costs, but also make a living out of it.
“Incredibly,” shared Robert, “record sales went up during the pandemic. I guess, since people spend more time at home, they either watch streaming sites or listen to music. And music, through vinyl, has been not only an outlet, but rediscovering something from their youth if they are from older generations, or discovering something new if you’re a millennial or Generation Z."
The Tuazons said there is an increasing number of younger people buying records from them. And since their physical store was put up in the second floor of D’Ace Plaza some three months ago, a new stream of customers have come in. They constantly work with regional distributors for new releases as well as the re-issues -- the order box sets, special titles, Record Store Day releases, and even rarities.
“There’s a market for everyone,” noted Robert. “Some like to get the 180-gram re-issues, some prefer the early pressings. Some go for box sets. Kanya kanya.”And the way Robert sees it, it is their job to provide that fix.As for the record label aspect, the focus of the Tuazons is on OPM whether independent music that was previously released only on compact disc or streaming. headtopics.com
Slated for release are True Faith’s "Sentimental," Barbie Almalbis-Honasan’s "Scenes from Inside," Kitchie Nadal’s self-titled debut, and Purple Chicken’s "Halang" to name a few.“There would be more this 2020 if I hadn’t stopped him,” said Tasha by way of stepping on the gas pedal.
Robert’s first every vinyl record was Pearl Jam's "Backspacer," hence the name of the shop. “Pearl Jam is my all-time favorite band,” he enthused. “What better way to pay tribute to them than name the shop after them.”“I never thought we’d get here – sell records, first in tiangges, then online, and now have our own store. Now, we’re putting out the music that we like,” bared the bespectacled Robert. “I thought about it but never really considered it until a couple of years ago. And now, it’s a reality.”Read more: ABS-CBN News »
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