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[“Why TIMM?” Special Interview 1]
Tom Smith, CEO, JPU Records Limited

2015.08.24

Q1. Please introduce yourself.

A1. I’m Tom Smith, CEO of JPU Records Limited. We are a London-based label that strives to bring music from Asia and make it available in the UK, Europe and beyond in physical and digital formats, at localised, competitive prices. Currently our line-up includes the GazettE, SCANDAL, Dempagumi.inc, SPYAIR, Boom Boom Satellites, POLYSICS and Ling tosite sigure. We don’t stick to any particular genre.


Q2. How many times have you attended TIMM so far?

A2. Once, in 2014. This year will be my second time.


Q3. What were the reasons of your participation?

A3. It’s a great opportunity to meet the companies I already work with in one location, as well as to expand my network. I’d previously been to Japan to meet with labels on my own, and it would take a great deal of time to visit everyone efficiently. It’s also useful to see which artists are actively being promoted for international markets.


Q4. What were your impressions about TIMM?

A4. It was great. Nearly all the labels I had expected to attend were in attendance.


Q5. Could you get good contacts with Japanese companies there? Have you ever done some business with them?

A5. Yes, because of attending TIMM I could meet the specific contact I needed to release the back catalogue for one of our existing artists. Since then we’ve released three CDs from this company, because of TIMM. I’m sure we will release many more in the future.


Q6. What are the attractive things of Japanese music market and the artists for you?

A6. It’s unique. I have yet to find a British band or artist that is similar to any of the bands on JPU Records.


Q7. Do you plan to attend TIMM this year as well? What do you expect for future TIMM?

A7. Yes. I expect more fantastic live music showcases from TIMM. It’s a rare chance for international buyers and journalists to experience Japanese bands properly. My opinion of a band has changed entirely after experiencing them live, compared to the CD.