“This is a magical festival,” Glassnote Records head Daniel Glass says of Coachella backstage. Glass is feeling very good after what he considers a breakout set from his band Chvrches on the Outdoor Theater stage on this Saturday afternoon.
“This was a moment just to see a band go to the next level,” he says. “And not because they’re ours, but just because you could feel it in the air. This was the next level for the band.”
Over the past few years Glass has become a connoisseur of breakout moments for his acts, watching them happen at festivals across America. “Made In America was unbelievable for Robert DeLong. I think Phoenix last year at Coachella first weekend, you just felt that magic in the air. We’ve had incredible moments here,” he says. “Two Door Cinema Club has had great moments here. I thought Little Green Cars had an unbelievable Coachella last year, Mumford & Sons, we’ve had great moments here.”
There is one set though that stands apart for him from others, and it was actually not at Coachella, but at Bonnaroo. “I was at Bonnaroo and [Mumford] asked me to get them 11 microphones at one moment, the first time they played Bonnaroo, small stage and they had everybody, Old Crow Medicine Show, Gillian Welch came up, David Rawlings. I could not believe the passion of that band, the collaborations, the artists’ pure love that came at that moment,” he recalls. “And the crowd started to swell from 6,000 to 8,000, there must have been 20, 22,000 by the end of that performance. Avett Brothers were on the side, everybody was looking and you saw an artist arrive.”
Looking ahead to the festival season in 2015 he expects GIVERS to be the next Glassnote act to step forward and announce themselves as breakout stars at a festival. “I was in Lafayette, Louisiana a few weeks ago and I heard a song from GIVERS I think will be huge,” he says. “That was a moment, in Lafayette, Louisiana, and I saw the crowds, I saw the festival, so I thought, to me, that was special.”
GIVERS are part of a busy rest of the year for Glass and his team. “We have new GIVERS this summer, we have Tor Miller, Flo Morrissey, Panama Wedding, HOLYCHILD and Jeremy Messersmith, so all new babies,” he says. “And Childish Gambino is exploding, which I’m so excited about.”
The rest of 2014 clearly sees Glassnote focusing more on developing artists but it would be very interesting to see what someone with Glass’ track record would do with some iconic artists. We asked him who of his heroes he’d like to work with. “Paul Simon and Jackson Browne probably, quick,” he says.
And what he would do with those artists musically? Starting with Browne he says, “There’s a producer now named Markus Dravs, who is just extraordinary. He’s done Mumford & Sons, Arcade Fire, Coldplay, Bjork, Angel Haze, I think he’s just an amazing producer. That’s my first one that comes to mind that I would have work with him.”
As for Simon, Glass says, “I’d have to listen to Paul. Paul knows better than me, it’s hard to tell Paul what to do. [But] I’ve never met this guy Ariel Rechtshaid, I hear he’s a great producer, sounds like somebody who is very smart and makes very tasteful records. Works with Vampire Weekend, who sort of has the sound of Paul Simon sometimes from some of his days. That might be a nice thing to do. I like older producers to be honest, I lean toward the real respected guys.”
Glass has one more dream artist he’d like to work with and it’s a pairing he is willing to do anything make happen. “If Joni [Mitchell] would start singing again I’d love to put Joni’s record out,” he says. “If you’re listening, Joni, ‘Sing, whatever voice you have I will do anything to support you.’”