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Best of Chicago > Music > Record Label

Bonnie "Prince" Billy, "Cursed Sleep"

Reader’s Choice Drag City Records

Chicago has loads of terrific record labels, but none can quite match Drag City for personality, range, and healthy disregard for trends and hype. I’m not saying they’ve never released a turd (hello, King Kong), but the Dans—label heads Dan Koretzky and Dan Osborn—like what they like, from high profile eccentrics like Bonnie “Prince” Billy and Smog’s Bill Callahan to local originals like Azita and Singer to influential veterans like Bert Jansch and Mayo Thompson to stuff that defies all categorization. (Wait until you hear the Indonesian folk-rock band Suarasama, whose DC debut is coming this summer.) Drag City might well be the most astonishing label in the country, let along Chicago. They also do good works, distributing labels like David Grubbs’s Blue Chopsticks, Greg Weeks’s Language of Stone imprint, and the excellent guerrilla ethnomusicological imprint Yaala Yaala. Arrow —Peter Margasak

Readers’ Choice Bloodshot Records


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