Photo Finish Records and Caroline today announced a new partnership whereby Caroline will distribute the New York-based indie label’s releases including upcoming albums by The Mowgli’s and Handsome Ghost as well as recordings by the label’s newest signing SHAED.
“I’m really looking very forward to working with [Capitol Music Group COO] Michelle Jubelirer, [Caroline and Harvest Records co-heads] Jaqueline Saturn and Piero Giramonti. “I’ve heard amazing things about their team and am excited to have them in our corner,” says Photo Finish co-founder Matt Galle, 38, who has twice been named to Billboard‘s 40 Under 40 power players list and somehow has the time to work as a senior agent at the Paradigm Talent Agency overseeing acts like Halsey and Shawn Mendes in addition to managing producer/songwriter Matt Squire and co-founding the Bamboozle Festival.
“Jacqueline and I both know [Photo Finish co-founders] Matt Galle and Mike Marquis from past experiences,” says Giramonti. “We got super excited about the deal very early on and are fans of the label and the guys that run it, they are extremely accomplished and have a great track record.”
According to Galle, over the past ten years Photo Finish has sold over a million albums and more than 15 million singles including the hit “Don’t Trust Me” by the the label’s best-selling artists 3OH!3 which went to No. 1 on the Billboard‘s Pop Songs chart in July of 2009.
The Caroline agreement follows past Photo Finish deals with Universal Music Group and Atlantic Records and establishes the label as an entirely independent entity. “At this point now we’re controlling our own destiny, we’re owning everything and we’ll make all the decisions. We operate as an indie but we swing for the fences and have a lot of resources,” says Galle, who now has six people working at the label. He also notes he’ll continue working exclusively with the Universal Music synch team, which had successful placements for Photo Finish artists Marian Hill and The Mowgli’s and will use Caroline’s radio promotion services for certain artists.
“Every deal is different,” says Giramonti as Caroline, which operates under the Capitol Music Group umbrella and offers distribution and an array of label services, including radio promotion, marketing, synch/branding/licensing, and digital marketing. “One of the structural changes we’ve made is that Matt Sawin, who is essentially our right hand, now oversees the commercial and marketing area. But every deal depends on the label and what resources they have and how they’re structured. Some rely on us for everything and some like Photo Finish cherry pick. But every deal goes through our commercial department which is not just distribution, but also working with DSPs [digital service providers] and promoting artists across those platforms.”
Since being named co-general managers of Caroline in December, Giramonti and Saturn have relocated the core of the company from New York to L.A and made several key executive appointments including most recently naming Marni Halpern as head of promotions while they are in the midst of working albums by artists like Ben Rector (whose new release Brand New went top ten on the Billboard 200 chart) and setting up new releases.
“We are extremely excited about the Q3 and Q4 release schedules where a lot of the stuff we’ve been focusing and developing is going to be coming out,” Giramonti says. This includes new albums by Banks and Glass Animals, both on Harvest; the long-awaited Avalanches album on Astralwerks; a new Alter Bridge release and an a recording by a new ATO signing named Joseph, among others. Giramonti, also mentions signing Irish artist James Vincent McMorrow for the U.S. “We have a lot of things in the hopper and are making deals,” he says.