Henry Stone Music

“Campaign To Transform TK Into Album Label Succeeds” – Cash Box (1978)

Campaign to Transform TK into Album Label Success

“NEW YORK – In one 90-day period this year TK albums by Peter Brown, KC and the Sunshine Band, Betty Wright, and Foxy all went gold. This was no accident: TK, which had its first hits with singles, has finally become a full-fledged album label. Among the 40 or so LPs that TK now has on the market are Bobby Caldwell’s self titled debut on TK/ Clouds , T-Connection ‘s “On Fire” on TK/Dash, Latimore’s ” Dig A Little Deeper” on TK /Glades, Eddie Daniel’s “Street Wind ” on TK/Marlin the Ritchie Family’s “American Generation” on TK/ Marlin, “Phil Upchurch” on TK/Marlin, Ralph McDonald’s “The Path” on TK/Marlin, “USA/European Connection” on TK/Marlin, “Dorothy Moore” on TK/Malaco, Gwen McCrae’s “Let’s Straighten It Out” on TK/ Cat, Gregg Diamond’s ” Star Cruiser” on TK/Marlin, Jimmy Bo Horne’s “Dance Across The Floor” on TK/Sunshine Sound, Michal Urbaniak’s “Ecstasy” on TK/Marlin, and Michael Bloomfield’s “Count Talent and the Originals” on TK/Clouds In addition TK has recently signed deals with Jimmy Castor and Joe Tex, and albums should be forthcoming from them shortly. This proliferation of albums on a label that used to be considered singles-oriented is the result of a conscious campaign that was initiated by Henry Stone, TK’s president and founder, two years ago. “In the record business, you have to change with the times,” Stone commented, “I made a commitment about two years ago to become an album company, and now It’s a pure album company.” Naturally, only a small percentage of TK’s LP output can be expected to go gold or platinum. But Stone points out that a fair number of his current records (e.g., Voyage, U.S .A. European Connect ion) are selling in the 150-200,000 range . “It’s not gold or platinum. ” he said, “but it sure adds up to a lot of sales when you have eight or ten of those things going . Now we’re on the way to gold album with Bobby Caldwell, another new artist. ” New artists have been the lifeblood of TK since its establishment In 1970. All of the original artists on TK , including Betty Wright, Beginning of The End , Timm y Thomas, Latimore, George and Owen Mccrae, and KC and the Sunshine Band, were newcomers to the music business when they had hits with the Miami-based label. And it is still Stone’s policy to look for new acts with hit potential – a policy that has recently paid off handsomely with such artists as Peter Brown and Foxy. An increasing number of well-known names , however , are beginning to crop up on the TK roster, including Joe Tex and Jimmy Castor . Accord ing to¬† Stone. signing these acts is part of his campaign to build a strong album company . Another part of t_hat strategy is TK’s recent expansion out of its R&B and disco base into jazz . rock and gospel music . TK’s Clouds label, for example , special izes in roc k, with Bobby Caldw ell as the major artist and other acts to be signed early next year . The Roots . anothpr TK-distributed label , features such blulartists as Jimmy Reed, Gene Barge and ild Child Butler . Marli n is a jazz fusion/ ,sco label, where Michael Urbaniak and Eddie Daniels brush shoulders with Gregg Diamond and the U.S.A. European Connection. There are also two TK-distributed labels that specialize in gospel, . ~alaco and Gospel Roots . ” Expand Base ” I’m trying to keep my base very strong , which is the R&B-disco th ing,” Stone commented, “and there is a need for us to expand. We’ve done it with the ja zz fusion th ing, and rock , I guess, is the next thing to get into. But we have to do it very selectively and very cautiously, because you can ‘t go in there and not actually compete with the majors in that . “We’ll build our own rock acts – that’s the main thing . I’ll use my promotion know how. I mean, there ‘s still nothing like hit product. you know? If it’s in the grooves.”