Travis Keller has always been slightly ahead of the curve; a true DIY music industry tastemaker (and fan). He created his blog, BUDDYHEAD.com, in 1998 which has since become a record label releasing over 40 records since 2001. And now he’s taken to Fluence to find fresh music discoveries and help artists with advice.
So, Travis, how’d you get started in music?
When I moved to Los Angeles at 17 my first friends were a band called, the Kanker Sores (they later became the Icarus Line) who were on Recess Records and ingrained into the punk scene. So I just kinda landed in the middle of everything; my best friends were always promoting shows and playing shows with their band. I picked up the slack in the areas of photography, ‘zine (later webzine) and started pressing 7 inch vinyls of extra songs they had.
Why did you initially create Buddyhead?
It all just kind of happened, it wasn’t something that was planned. Coming out of the punk DIY scene it just seemed like what you did. You got involved in whatever way you could and wanted to. I’ve always loved music and been around it, but never really planned on running a business around it. It was after Buddyhead’s fourth record release that we started getting demos from bands we didn’t know and it was like “Oh man! I guess I run a label now.” But the idea of BUDDYHEAD and still the motivation behind it is to shine a light on art or music that normally wouldn’t be seen or heard… And make myself and my friends laugh from time to time too.
The label side started because we were promoting a Valentine’s Day show in 2001 at The Smell (first show at that venue ever) and the Icarus Line had an extra song, so we pressed up a thousand 7″ vinyls and gave 214 of them away (to the first 214 people at the show). Get it 214 = February 14th. Sold the rest. Then our friends in Ink and Daggers singer died and they didn’t have a label for their last album so we released that. From there things just kept popping up that needed homes like At The Drive-In and Murder City Devils.
What artists are you currently listening to? Any new artist predictions for 2015?
This week I’ve been listening to that YG record a lot. Also, Kendrick Lamar, Rowland S. Howard and The Wytches. I predict 2015 won’t suck as bad as 2014 because I just don’t think that’s possible.
Tell us about your Fluence experience thus far.
I enjoy it because Fluence is different than reviewing an album, I try to look at it like parenting a bit. My version of Rock N Roll’s older brother I guess.
What types of artists would you like to hear from on Fluence?
All kinds… Maybe people that were inspired by the same records I was to do this and keep doing this. And people who are in music because they have to be because there’s no other choice… It’s something you have to do and be around (AKA no posers).
Visit Travis Keller on Fluence to submit your music today.
— TK -_- Travis Keller (@buddyhead) February 3, 2015