A new book, Disturbing the Peace tells the story of groundbreaking indie label 415 Records. The label founded by Howie Klein influenced other labels to follow, and it released era-defining singles, EPs and albums.
In the late ‘70s and early to mid 1980s, San Francisco was a creative incubator, bringing forth all manner of new music acts. Ground zero for the scene was the Mabuhay Gardens, home to huge barrels of popcorn, once-a-week spaghetti nights, colorful emcee Dirk Dirksen, and punk/new wave bands from all over the Bay Area. Concert booker and renegade radio deejay Howie Klein joined with Aquarius Records owner Chris Knab to launch a record label in support of that scene.
Measured in strictly commercial terms, 415 Records was at best a modest success. But then, for Klein and his founding partner Chris Knab (owner of the city’s Aquarius Records shop), financial gain was never the primary goal. Ask him about his objectives, and he’ll tell you: “F-U-N,” he’ll say. “It was all about fun.”
But 415 Records would have a lasting impact, one that extended far beyond the minor chart action that a few of the label’s artists achieved. Klein and his cohorts established new ways of doing business in the music industry, and were at the forefront of a resurgence of independent labels.
Disturbing the Peace: 415 Records and the Rise of New Wave is Bill Kopp’s chronicle of the groundbreaking independent record label founded by Howie Klein & Chris Knab, featuring the stories of Romeo Void (“Never Say Never,” “A Girl in Trouble”), Red Rockers (“China,” “Shades of 45”), Translator (“Everywhere That I’m Not”), Wire Train (“Chamber of Hellos,” “Skills of Summer”), Roky Erickson (“If You Have Ghosts,” “I Walked with a Zombie”), The Nuns, Pearl Harbor and Explosions and nearly two dozen other bands.
Featuring a foreword from Joel Selvin (Hollywood Eden) and based on Bill Kopp’s nearly 100 interviews with the artists, industry execs, producers, friends, rivals, onlookers, journalists and hangers-on, Disturbing the Peace also features hundreds of photos and memorabilia from the archives of those who were there.
More info about Disturbing the Peace: http://415book.com/
Ordering information from HoZac Books: https://hozacrecords.com/product/disturbing-the-peace/
More from author Bill Kopp: http://blog.musoscribe.com/