In 1990, electronic musicians Matt Black and Jonathan More, who performed as the duo Coldcut, were nearly five years into their career and already felt confined by the major-label system. So, they founded their own U.K. imprint, Ninja Tune, and its publishing company, Just Isn’t Music.
Come 2020 -- and with offices in London, Berlin, Paris and Los Angeles -- the label will celebrate its 30th anniversary in a digital age where indie acts have more options than ever. “There’s much more awareness for the independents in the market,” says Marie Clausen, who was promoted to head of North America and global streaming for the label group this May. “That awareness is very important so that we can actually compete, to some extent, in the major market.”