We check in with the label’s Moodena and Sartorial as Tropical Disco launch their brand new imprint TDR LTD; a new concept where the guys are aiming to create “something that is extremely special, a give back of sorts for our most loyal of fans”. Just what we need right now, let’s groove…
DMC: Tropical Disco is a very dominant label when it comes to funky disco infused House tracks. How did the story of Tropical Disco begin?
TD: Sartorial started the label with the help of Simon Kennedy in 2018. with the first release coming out in November 2018. The label was set up as an outlet to release vinyl for friends. Moodena then joined the label in 2019 just after his first release on the label.
DMC: Which have been the key releases for you on the label so far?
TD: It would have to be our first Number 1 in sales, which was our VA Vinyl Series Volume 4. That was a momentous moment for us and was very unexpected. Then our first Number 1 in digital sales with Moodena’s ‘Strawberry Jam’ (part of Volume 4) again started to change things up for us. There have been a few Number 1’s on the label which have all been big releases for us and key to keeping the popularity of the label going. Phazed Groove ‘It Must Be Love’ was a great one, Moodena’s ‘The Rattlesnake & The Ant’, Soul Central ‘All This Love’, too many to mention. We have also been branching out musically. Dominic Balchin is currently Number 3 in the Soulful House Chart on Traxsource with ‘Side Walk Hustle’ which is the first time we have even been in this chart, so it’s great to see the label developing into more than just Nu Disco which is what we have become known for.
DMC: You also do vinyl editions of your releases. What’s the thought behind it?
TD: Vinyl is our love and our passion. The label was initially started as a vinyl label. We didn’t go digital until March 2018.
DMC: We hear that you are about to start a new offshoot to Tropical Disco. What will the new label be all about and why an offshoot?
TD: The new label is called TDR LTD. We started it as we wanted to create something special, a collectors limited edition on Vinyl. There is no music policy, the emphasis is just on quality music. Each vinyl release will feature 3 tracks, one of our hottest digital only releases that have never been pressed to vinyl, a brand new never heard before track that we have cherry picked for the release and a long lost forgotten gem from our vinyl collection that we have licensed . The first release features Moodena’s chart topper ‘The Rattlesnake & The Ant’, fresh music from a hot new producer called Frederik Hendrik with his Afro Infused Disco Bomb ‘Westepark Cafe’ and finally ‘Feelin Jazz’ by DIY, an Old Deep Garage Groover that was Vinyl Only and came out in 2002. The vinyl will be limited to 350 copies, hand stamped and numbered 180gr vinyl with a hand numbered insert and comes with stickers and a pin badge presented in hand stamped muslin bag. We’ve worked very hard on the branding to give it that quality connoisseur feel.
DMC: Will the release schedule be as intense as with the mother label?
TD: No it definitely won’t be. We already have the first three vinyl ready to go but as it’s a collectors edition, it will be less frequent than the mother label. Also there won’t be any digital until the vinyl has completely sold out.
DMC: Running a label is different than it used to be before. You have a rich history in record label and artist management. What are the key factors to run a successful label these days?
TD: Firstly having great music is obviously key. We have a pool of great artists that deliver great music constantly and have slowly built up the TD Family. We are also in a privileged position where we are sent music constantly!! Having a good ear, being organised, determined and passionate about what you are doing is important. You have to believe in it. We shy away from signing something because we think it could be big, we only sign what we like or would play ourselves. Finally branding is also an important factor but primarily for us, put out quality music as the music will do the talking.
DMC: Finally which releases should we have an eye on in the near future on both labels?
TD: On the Tropical Disco Records, digitally we drop ‘Caprice’ by Igor Gonya which came out on vinyl originally and a fav in the TD Office. On TDR LTD. we have signed an old classic from Paul Johnson and some fire from Retromigration that we can’t wait to share.