Published May 27, 2008Name: HalfLife Records
Date of Birth: 2003
Releases to Date: 10
Biggest Seller: Classified Hitch Hikin Music
Upcoming Releases: Classified (new album, Sept. 08)
Luke Boyd, aka Classified, started stamping the words HalfLife on his albums in high school, well before he was nationally known and before the record label was formally incorporated into a company. While his career as an MC has grown at a steady pace, his label is still only a two-man operation run out of his house in Enfield, Nova Scotia and one other residence. While he has entertained thoughts in the past of making his home base Toronto, New York or L.A., he is very comfortable at home in Canadas Ocean Playground trying to find a balance between forging ahead with his career and bolstering his label. "For me it is not get rich or die trying. I dont gotta be rich just being able to pay the bills and doing what I want and enjoying myself, and Im kinda doing that right now. I gotta see how long I can keep this up until I get bored and do something different. If I want to take the label to the next level, when the music thing actually slows down for me, to get more business, maybe thats something I can do in the future.
"Long term what I really want to do is have a label with a full team and investors, people believing in what we are trying to do and putting the team behind us, not just focusing on Canada but trying to take it overseas and down to the States and try to make it a whole lot bigger. We are starting grassroots, were moving, maybe not as fast as Id like to, [but] things are happening and Im starting to learn. At the same time Im so focused on trying to make this music. I produce all the artists that come out on the label so that is the whole other side of it that takes a lot of time. Im not gonna front, Im not pushing the label 100 percent like I could be doing if I put that time into it.
Producing For Me, Producing For You
"For me the album I am most proud of is the last album I put out. That is kind of how I make my albums, I gotta like this album better than my last album, I always think the next album should be better. I work the hardest on my albums because it is me by myself whereas with other artists, its me and them. [Working on an album for] Jordan [Croucher] it was more of an R&B thing and that was the first time I mastered singing. [Working] with Chad [Hatcher] it was just some cool shit that never really sounded like anything I had ever heard, so I really liked doing that. With my brother [Mic Boyd], Ive been working on music with him forever so that was more of the style of working on one of my own albums I guess. They all got their own special little thing, something different. If they were the same genre of music I might be able to say what I like the best.
"Out of $11.50 per record, 19 percent goes to EMI so that is down to about $10. Out of that, $2 goes to manufacturing, and out of that $8 [remaining], 25 percent is kept for reserves for cutbacks or whatever, so that is another $2 or so, so were down to $6. Of that $6, the way I do it is 50 percent label, 50 percent artist. So we go 50/50 I never got stuff like that when I was doing shit. Its pretty straightforward and I told them, were at 50 percent for the label and thats where that goes. Then we make an album together, Im giving you 35 percent and taking 15 percent for what Ive done [as producer].
Way of the Future
"I dont know if it is so much about money or its more just having people that know what they are doing and doing it in the right places. I dont think its like okay, heres a million dollars, can you make us super famous? Maybe we can for a couple of years but what the fuck? Whats that good for? It's more something we are trying to build up and learn and try to figure, thats what even majors are trying to figure right now, they are trying to figure out the new way to make money because people arent buying CDs.