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Richard Responds To Madison

Posted by: Drew Beringer (09/05/06)
Richard Reines, co-owner of Drive-Thru, has posted a reply to Madison's recent break up. He also responds to some of the things Madison said in his reply as well. Stephanie Reines also adds a little to the end.
Richard RespondsThere are 2 sides to every story. Bands love to play the sympathy
card and act like they are the victims in every situation. In
Madison's case, that is absolutely not true.

We were good friends with the band, and were anxious for them to
write songs that made us confident enough to finally sign them, which
we eventually did. The band then took almost 9 MONTHS to record demos
for a new CD, not a "couple of months"as they claim. That's
fine, because we never rush bands to write quality songs. It’s just
that the bands get impatient, anxious, and antsy that they aren't
touring, but it is them who take so long to write new songs.

After they sent us the demos, the next day they were on the phone
asking if we heard them. I don't know if they realize that we run a
record label with other bands. It isn't "Madison Records." I
told them they had to give us some time to listen because we had a
lot of other music from our bands to listen to including Hellogoodbye
mixes, Early November mixes, Hidden In Plain View demos, Dave Melillo
demos, House Of Fools mixes, Self Against City demos, and more. All
of which were given to us before the Madison demos, and most of which
had to take priority because the bands were about to go in the
studio, or were in the studio and needed comments ASAP. Not to
mention we have to run everything else that happens at Drive-Thru and
Rushmore, plus we were going through some major legal battles with
our distributor (which Madison knew about), but they were just being
completely selfish. If they were "friends," cared about anything
beside themselves, or were professionals, they would have
understood. A majority of our other bands did.

That meant nothing to Brandon, who still called every couple of days,
getting increasingly more annoyed that HIS music wasn't listened to
yet. 9 months to send demos, but us asking for a couple of weeks to
listen was way too much. By the way, when I say "listen" I mean we
spend time with the songs and listen multiple times, write up some
notes, and make sure that we're completely confident that the band
is ready to go into the studio and make a record. I could stick the
CD in while I answer email and half pay attention to it, but that's
now how we do it. When he said he was blown off in a rude and vulgar
manner, I have no clue what he is talking about, unless it was his
5th call in 5 days when I keep giving the same answer and I might
have said something out of annoyance, but I'm 100% positive it was
nothing rude or vulgar. Brandon is a big boy, and a friend at the
time, and could handle it. At least we (as owners) still take calls
from our bands, unlike some other labels our size.

LESS than 2 weeks after we get the demos and this process has been
explained extensively and thoroughly, I get a couple of "urgent"
calls from Brandon while I was in Chicago with Hellogoodbye. Brandon
asked if I listened yet, and I told him I was on the road and I will
when I get back. He said "well we need to go in the studio in 2
weeks and if we don't go in we are going to break up." I said that
was the stupidest thing I ever heard. He went on to tell me that the
band's parents are pressuring them to get jobs or go back to school
and if they can't be in the studio in 2 weeks then they are done. I
said never in our history have we ever succumbed to pressure from a
band's parents to get a band into the studio to record a CD. Plus
they were all over 18. (Flash back: members of the band dropped out
of school VERY prematurely. Some dropped out over a year before we
signed the band. I told them at the time that they should wait to
drop out until they NEED to. Advice for other bands: if you drop out
too early to dedicate time to your band, and then things aren't
happening as quickly as you expected, you WILL get pressure from your
parents to go back to school! Drop out when you need to, not just
because you want to. This was part of the reason the band shot
themselves in the foot.).

We send bands in the studio when we think their songs are ready and
the producer is right, etc not based on parents putting pressure on
you. The songs on the demos may have been right, but I needed to
spend time with the music and I was getting home in a couple of days.
Brandon responded with "well you know we love you guys but then we
need to get off of the label so we can release the cd."This was a
shock to me. I asked what the hell he was talking about. He said
that he had discussed it with their lawyer and that's what they want
to do since we aren't ready to send them in the studio in 2 weeks. I
said, that if that's how they felt then OK. Talk to our lawyer.

Our lawyer has a LOT of work she does for us. As a matter of fact we
have 2 lawyers because there is so much work. When a band wants to
leave our label because they can' wait a week for an answer, they
are NOT our priority. Our lawyer decided, and I agree, that there are
much more important things to do first including dealing with our
distributor nightmare and the future of our label.

MADISON:"We originally started this band, because music was
something that we all felt passionate about. We loved to do anything
it took to spread our music to anyone that was willing to listen to
it. Day after day, week after week, getting this band to be a
productive entity became a chore, and the one thing that we all
collectively loved, became something we despised. Every thing that we
felt passionate about was practically stripped from us. After all was
said and done, continuing this band was didn't seem possible and it
was a terribly hard decision but we felt it was best to just give it

What a crock of shit. Anyone who is passionate about something they
do would NOT give up and break up their band over something as minute
as this. I don't remember the Format crying when a major label
dropped them. They didn't break up. They made their own CD (amazing
CD at that) and continued on. Anyone who breaks up is NOT passionate
at all.

MADISON: "The Suicide Files song, Things Fall Apart describes the
feeling that all of us are going through better than anything else we
can say, The only thing worse / Than losing the one thing that you
love / Is having the one thing that you love / Turned into everything
that you fucking hate."

Yeah I hear you. I loved that band, but they turned into a jealous, bitter, impatient band who listened to
the one kid in their band who they all talked the most shit about,
and let him run their band into the ground. Brandon 100% brought this
upon himself and his whole band. Dennis writes the songs, yet he let
Brandon talk all the shit. He and Richie both still talk to us.

MADISON: "The one last thing we wish for as a band, is for us to
serve as an example for the future. Be careful what contracts you
sign, because as promising as it might seem, it could eventually mean
the end of something that you love."

My advice for bands: If your band writes great songs this won't be
an issue.

Drive-Thru Records has been through so much shit over the last 10
years, we could have given up many, many times like Madison, but we
actually are passionate and keep going on. Which brings me to some of
the douche bags that post on AbsolutePunk.net and have NO clue what
they are talking about. I don't understand why there is so much
hatred for every single thing we do. We try and do good things for
bands, other labels, and the community in general, yet people would
love to see us fail. I don't get it.

First of all, why do people believe some 16 year old kid has any
insight into what is really going on at any record label? Come on! I
read some of these posts and just crack up how clueless they are. As
far as the bands who got signed to DTR/Rushmore a while ago and
still have yet to put out a CD, there is a reason for it. We can't
write songs for them, and we have standards before we let bands
record their CDs. We don't want to release CDs with 2 good songs and
bunch of filler. If it takes a year for a band to write that great
CD, then it takes a year. Trust me, I wish it was faster. If the band
loves what they are coming up with, and we don't agree, then we may
have to part ways. We can hire producers that re-write songs or co-
write songs for bands like a lot of bands have been doing lately, but
we don't. I still believe a REAL band can write their own amazing
songs. If they can't, then they are puppet heads.

No bands are "ignored"� on the label. The bands that have nothing
out yet aren't being "pushed"� because they have nothing out.
That’s not rocket science. The other bands all have our attention,
but we can't constantly spend money. The bands need to tour and
build up their fanbase. Buying 100 commercials on Fuse won’t sell
more CDs. We have tried it. If a band plays and only 30 kids show up,
you should tell your friends how great the band is and get them to
listen to the music, and then they tell their friends, etc and then
the next time 60 kids show up. Then 120, etc. That's how bands
build. I have seen New Found Glory, Blink182, Jimmy Eat World, Brand
New, Taking Back Sunday, etc. all play to 10 kids many times in many
cities. That's how REAL bands do it. They aren't instantly on the
radio or MTV or major labels (or major labels pretending to be on
indie labels). They actually tour and tour and tour and if they are
great the audience keeps growing. If it doesn't they write more
songs and hopefully those songs catch on. That's reality. All of
those bands I mentioned worked their asses off and it paid off. I saw
it happen, and they all deserve it. I think that is a common
misconception amongst kids. They think that these bands happen
overnight, which is definitely not the case. It takes years of hard
work for most bands, and it builds character and teaches the band
what is like to pay dues.

Houston Calls are writing their 2nd full length and are going to
shoot a video for "Bob and Bonnie" soon, and Self Against City
just finished their CD, which comes out Jan 9 to answer those posts.
House Of Fools EP comes out in October, followed by their full
length, which is already recorded, early 06. They are one of the best
live bands around so make sure to see them.

There are many labels who ignore their bands, and we definitely
aren't one of them. But with that being said, every band wants more
attention and thinks they deserve more than they get. Not just in the
music industry, it applies to every day life and jobs. How many times
have you thought that you deserve more money for your job? There are
many varying degrees of jealousy and self-importance, but everyone
has it. It's just human nature.

That was all written by Richard, and I completely agree, but here's
what I (Stefanie) have to say:

I can say that I'm 99% positive I have more experience and knowledge
in this industry than everyone who is actually bored enough to read
this. When you have run a label for 10+ years, dealt with over 30
bands with 4+ members and managers and lawyers with varying degrees
of egos to match, and have TRULY learned how to sacrifice in order to
do what you love day in and day out, then feel free to comment on my
life. Until then, mind your own fucking business. Buy the new Bob
Dylan album "Modern Times."

Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 222
12:59 PM on 09/05/06
www.ryancoons.blogspot.co m
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DeathCabForCoon's Avatar
Next week on Montel Williams....
01:03 PM on 09/05/06
Claret and Blue
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3GunGaz's Avatar
This was the reply I wanted to hear.
01:04 PM on 09/05/06
Registered User
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No Avatar Selected
is this supposed to make me think that DT is any less douche?
01:04 PM on 09/05/06
I want to beLIEve
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IAmAmazing's Avatar
hah, well i can see that they do have some good "excuses" but now i dont know what to think about DTR now, I mean in the last couple months Madison and DATF break up and TTR leaves the label. O and Steph's input to say "go buy the new Bob Dylan" isint something to put in a press release about a situation about one of your bands breaking up. Seems like they are really trying to do things for their bands now though.
01:05 PM on 09/05/06
Registered User
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No Avatar Selected
Richard and Stephanie always surprise me with their immaturity in handling grown up situations. Geesh!
01:07 PM on 09/05/06
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reductiondesign's Avatar
Great post.
01:10 PM on 09/05/06
Alex DiVincenzo
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Alex DiVincenzo's Avatar
01:11 PM on 09/05/06
Highway Robbery
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spotcollins's Avatar
is this supposed to make me think that DT is any less douche?

i think it is.
01:12 PM on 09/05/06
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mylastnerv's Avatar
Nice post.
01:13 PM on 09/05/06
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mrzippo3's Avatar
I thought it was a good read. Thank you DTR for bringing NFG, Midtown, and Fenix TX into my ears.
01:13 PM on 09/05/06
Fighter of the Night Man
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harryCane's Avatar
hah, well i can see that they do have some good "excuses" but now i dont know what to think about DTR now, I mean in the last couple months Madison and DATF break up and TTR leaves the label. O and Steph's input to say "go buy the new Bob Dylan" isint something to put in a press release about a situation about one of your bands breaking up. Seems like they are really trying to do things for their bands now though.
don't forget Rx Bandits. They left too. But it's nice to hear the label address some of the recent trouble.
01:14 PM on 09/05/06
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yutsmcgee's Avatar
I totally agree with everything Richard said regarding the situation. However, I don't think he should let "the douche bags that post on AbsolutePunk.net and have NO clue what they are talking about" piss him off to the point of making unprofessional comments like that.
01:18 PM on 09/05/06
Listen To Saves The Day
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gengen's Avatar
houston calls for life.
01:18 PM on 09/05/06
Registered User
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r3wind74's Avatar
hah, well i can see that they do have some good "excuses" but now i dont know what to think about DTR now, I mean in the last couple months Madison and DATF break up and TTR leaves the label. O and Steph's input to say "go buy the new Bob Dylan" isint something to put in a press release about a situation about one of your bands breaking up. Seems like they are really trying to do things for their bands now though.

Again... I am pretty sure DATF broke up due to personal issues, none directly related to DTR. From what I read on DATF's myspace and from very brief talks w/those close to the band, it just "was time" to move on. Chris is becoming a teacher (getting married as well I think) and has other projects on tap (it seems they are recording a song or two) & may play some local shows.
So unless you know for sure that DATF broke up b/c of DTR..please site your source(s).

I never really enjoyed Madison (not my cup of tea) & I did enjoy TTR's new demos and a bit saddened by them leaving the DTR family but I will still be a fan of both...life goes on kiddies
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