The first instalment of Catalyst's (formerly dBs Berlin) Hear It? series features a video with Mobilee Records co-founder Ralf Kollmann about underground labels, plus a mini documentary on the record label.
There’s no shortage of content that reports on the rise of musical groups or individual performers. But what about the organisations that support them along the way? In response, we created a mini-documentary series called ‘Hear It?’ where we will focus on a few record labels in Berlin. Each one has had significant impacts on the electronic music scene and experienced huge growth within the past decade. Our first episode features Mobilee Records.
In 2005, Ralf Kollmann and Anja Schneider began a side project which would bloom into something that went beyond their expectations. Mobilee Records started its journey by tapping into the network Anja had established through her show on Fritz Radio. Now, with the help of a few more employees, they have given it their full attention. Showcasing the amazing electronic music projects in their community, each one has something unique to add to the scene.
This first little video has Ralf telling us about the most intense challenges to this kind of work. Some of these include intense competition on the market and the need for festivals to balance selling tickets and featuring artists who are breaking the moulds.
Initially hosting only three artists, Sebo K, Anja, and Pan-Pot, Mobilee Records had all their first releases on vinyl. Now a little over eleven-years later, they have published around 160 records! Not one of them in particular can be highlighted to have led to the success of their brand either. Instead it has been slow and steady growth, where each track has built upon the previous repertoire.
Their resolve to be evolutionary and stay on top of electronic music industry has led them into new corners. Most recently, they have been changing the nature of live performance by getting the ‘DJ’ out of the booth and into the spotlight. Check out the amazing visuals of Rodriguez Jr. towards the end of the mini-doc.
Soundtrack – Rodriguez Jr: Sulfuric State, Capitelle
We want to thank Ralf for the time he gave us to pick his brain and give us some incredible insight into what it’s like to be a record label in Berlin. As we dive deeper into the multi-faceted music industry to discover everything we can about it, we are increasingly finding out that many thank yous to many people are often in order. No one succeeds alone.