Cheapskate Records was really started back in 1996, which seems like so long ago. I started the label with a friend of mine and fellow band mate, under a different moniker, with the intent of releasing CDs or records for our own band. Like so many of my bands, we never really went anywhere but I still wanted to pursue the whole record label venture. In 1997 while attending Suny New Paltz I began putting together what would become our first release, The "How To Stretch A Dollar" compilation. I posted on a few websites, one being long time supporter Grub Records, that I was looking for bands to be on a compilation CD and I was amazed by the responses I got. I received so many demos that I had to turn a ton of them away - some of them were really bad but others were actually pretty good. I narrowed it down to 12 bands and then turned to Mike and Mya Park for the last band. Asian Man Records was nice enough to let me add The B. Lee Band (which is basically Less Than Jake with Mike Park singing) to the CD.
In 1998 I dropped out of Suny New Paltz and moved to Albany. That fall "How To Stretch A Dollar" was released and the responses we got for it were amazing! I couldn't believe that people actually liked the cheap compilation CD I put together with a bunch of no name bands on it. I could not stop with one release so I quickly began looking for more bands to work with.
In 2004 Cheapskate Records approached its tenth release and I figured it would be suiting to make like our first, a compilation with relatively unknown bands.
Forward to 2009, over a decade later, and Cheapskate Records is still going strong with about 30 releases under its belt. Even though Cheapskate Records has grown over the years it's still pretty much just me running the whole show. I have a few close people who help me out and I appreciate their help and willingness to work for free. I wouldn't be able to do this without them. Thanks.
What can we expect from Cheapskate Records? Well, more records is the simple answer. We will continue to approach things the same way we always have with hard work and a D.I.Y. ethic. We will continue to use independently owned companies to press and distribute our CDs, print our posters, stickers, and whatnot. I will also continue to only work with bands I really want to work with, which I think is one of the most important aspects of Cheapskate Records. As always, thanks for the continuing support. See you in the funny pages.—Jason
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