Daptone Records

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Daptone Records
Founded2001 (2001)
FounderBosco Mann
Neal Sugarman
Distributor(s)The Orchard
Redeye Worldwide
GenreFunk, soul
Country of originU.S.
LocationBrooklyn, New York
Official websitedaptonerecords.com

Daptone Records is a funk and soul independent record label based in Brooklyn, New York.[1] Best known as the home of Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings and Charles Bradley, the label boasts a roster which includes Menahan Street Band, The Budos Band, The Sugarman 3, and Antibalas, and runs the recording studio Daptone's House of Soul.[2]


Daptone Records was formed in 2001 by Gabriel Roth (Bosco Mann) and Neal Sugarman. Daptone was born out of the closure of Desco Records, a label run by Roth with fellow musician Philip Lehman who both played in the band Soul Providers.[3] Roth and Lehman ended their band and business relationship in 2000. Roth, who had played with Sharon Jones as part of the Soul Providers, subsequently founded a new label with Neal Sugarman, leader of The Sugarman 3, as the home of their new group, Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings.

Their first release was 2002's Dap Dippin' with Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings.[4] In their first four years, Daptone would also put out Sharon Jones' sophomore album, Naturally, as well as original releases by the Sugarman 3 and Dap-Kings-adjacent The Budos Band.

During this time, they also converted a two-family home in Bushwick, Brooklyn into an analog recording studio space. The first album recorded there was Antibalas's "Who Is this America?" in July 2003. Producer Mark Ronson became a fan of the studio. He brought in Amy Winehouse to record parts of her album Back to Black there with The Dap-Kings and Antibalas members Nick Movshon and Victor Axelrod.[4] The Dap-Kings would tour with Winehouse in 2007.[3]

In addition to Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Daptone has recorded and released the music of Antibalas, The Sugarman 3, The Budos Band, The Poets of Rhythm, The Mystery Lights, The Daktaris, The Mighty Imperials, Lee Fields, Charles Bradley, Binky Griptite, The Sha La Das, and Naomi Davis. The Daptone Record label is inexorably tied to Sharon Jones. The label and members of her band were with her during the last weeks before her death.[5]

Since its founding, Daptone has released over one hundred 45" singles and fifty albums.[6]


As of 2021, Daptone operates four specialty imprints.

Recording studios[edit]

Daptone built their studio, called Daptone's House of Soul, in a converted two-family home in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn. It was very run down when they first rented it, and the neighborhood was not great. Daptone Records has its offices in the top floor, the studio is on the ground floor. The label built the studio from scratch, and made the decision to not have computers, but to rely completely on the more old-fashioned analog recording methods to make music. There are tape machines and a CD recorder, but no Pro Tools or digital reverbs.[11]

The studio is where they have recorded most of their releases. Their distinctive sound is a product of the studio acoustics, recording only on analog tape (no digital), and mixing done by Roth. The recording studio and engineering personnel have been sought out by record producers such as Mark Ronson.[12]

In February 2009, Daptone's House of Soul was broken into and thieves made off with the better part of its equipment.[13][14]


Wick imprint artists[edit]

  • The Ar-Kaics
  • The Jay-Vons
  • The Mystery Lights
  • Michael Rault


Artist Title Catalog Number Release date
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings Dap Dippin' with Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings DAP-001 2002
Sugarman Three & Co. Pure Cane Sugar DAP-002 2002
The Mighty Imperials Thunder Chicken DAP-003 2004 (reissue)
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings Naturally DAP-004 2005
The Budos Band The Budos Band DAP-005 2005
The Sugarman 3 Sugar's Boogaloo DAP-006 2007 (reissue)
The Poets of Rhythm Practice What You Preach DAP-007 2006 (reissue)
The Sugarman 3 Soul Donkey DAP-008 2007 (reissue)
The Daktaris Soul Explosion DAP-009 2006 (reissue)
Bob and Gene If This World Were Mine... DAP-010 2007 (reissue)
The Budos Band The Budos Band II DAP-011 2007
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings 100 Days, 100 Nights DAP-012 2007
Various Artists Como Now: The Voices Of Panola Co., Mississippi DAP-014 2008
Menahan Street Band Make the Road by Walking DAP-015 2008
Naomi Shelton & the Gospel Queens What Have You Done, My Brother DAP-016 2009
Pax Nicholas & The Nettey Family Na Teef Know de Road of Teef DAP-017 2009 (reissue)
Various Artists Daptone Gold (label sampler) DAP-018 2009
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings I Learned the Hard Way DAP-019 2010
The Budos Band The Budos Band III DAP-020 2010
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings I Learned the Hard Way (11x45s box set) DAP-021 2010
Charles Bradley No Time for Dreaming DAP-022 2011
El Rego Et Ses Commandos El Rego (compilation) DAP-023 2011
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings Soul Time! (compilation) DAP-024 2011
Menahan Street Band No Time For Dreaming (The Instrumentals) DAP-025 2012
The Sugarman 3 What The World Needs Now DAP-026 2012
The Como Mamas Get An Understanding DAP-027 2013
Antibalas Antibalas DAP-028 2012
Menahan Street Band The Crossing DAP-029 2012
The Poets Of Rhythm Anthology 1992-2003 DAP-030 2013
Charles Bradley Victim of Love DAP-031 2013
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings Give The People What They Want DAP-032 2014
Naomi Shelton & the Gospel Queens Cold World DAP-033 2014
The Budos Band Burnt Offering DAP-034 2014
Saun & Starr Look Closer DAP-035 2015
Various Artists Daptone Gold, Vol. II (label sampler) DAP-036 2015
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings It's A Holiday Soul Party DAP-037 2015
The Dap-Kings A Closer Look at The Dap-Kings: The Instrumentals Behind Saun & Starr's "Look Closer" DAP-038 2018
Walker Family Singers Panola County Spirit DAP-039 2016
The James Hunter Six Hold On! DAP-040 2016
Charles Bradley Changes DAP-041 2016
The Frightnrs Nothing More To Say DAP-042 2016
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings Miss Sharon Jones! (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) DAP-043 2016
The Olympians The Olympians DAP-044 2016
The Como Mamas Move Upstairs DAP-045 2017
Antibalas Where the gods are in peace DAP-046 2017
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings Soul Of A Woman DAP-050 2017
The James Hunter Six Whatever it takes DAP-051 2017
Various Artists Daptone Super Soul Revue Live at the Apollo DAP-069 2021

Notable awards[edit]

Grammy Awards

A2IM Libera Awards

  • 2021: Antibalas, Fu Chronicles – Best World Record[16]
  • 2021: Label of the Year (Small)[16]
  • 2019: Orquesta Akokán, Orquesta Akokán – Best Latin Album (nominated)
  • 2019: Charles Bradley, Black Velvet – Best R&B Album (won)
  • 2019: Charles Bradley, Black Velvet Deluxe – Creative Packaging (nominated)
  • 2019: Label of the Year (Small) (won)
  • 2018: Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, Soul of a Woman – Best R&B Album (won)
  • 2018: Label of the Year (Small) (won)
  • 2017: Charles Bradley, Changes – Best Blues/Jazz/R&B Album (won)
  • 2017: Charles Bradley – Best Live Act (nominated)
  • 2017: Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings (Neal Sugarman) – Best Sync Usage (won)
  • 2017: Label of the Year (Small) (won)
  • 2017: Charles Bradley, ChangesMarketing Genius (nominated)
  • 2016: Label of the Year (Small) (won)
  • 2015: Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings – Hardest Working Artist (won)
  • 2015: Naomi Shelton & The Gospel Queens, Cold World – Best Heritage Album (nominated)
  • 2015: Label of the Year (Small) (nominated)
  • 2014: Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings, "Retreat" – Video of the Year (nominated)
  • 2014: Charles Bradley – Hardest Working Artist (won)
  • 2014: Charles Bradley – Best Live Act (nominated)
  • 2014: Label of the Year (Small) (won)
  • 2013: Antibalas, “Dirty Money” – Video of the Year (nominated)
  • 2013: Label of the Year (Small) (nominated)
  • 2012: Charles Bradley – Road Warrior of the Year (won)
  • 2012: Label of the Year (Small) (won)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Knafo, Saki (December 5, 2008). "Soul Reviver - Gabriel Roth - Daptone Records - Profile". The New York Times.
  2. ^ "ABOUT – Daptone Records". daptonerecords.com. Retrieved March 7, 2021.
  3. ^ a b Gross, Terry (November 28, 2007). "Sharon Jones Is 'Nobody's Baby'". Fresh Air. NPR.
  4. ^ a b "How Daptone Records Is Healing After Two Years of Profound Loss: 'We're Going to Go On'". Billboard. Retrieved March 7, 2021.
  5. ^ Roberts, Randall (November 20, 2016). "Dap-Kings' Gabriel Roth recalls Sharon Jones' last days: 'She didn't want to stop singing'". Los Angeles Times.
  6. ^ Bloom, Madison. "Daptone Records to Release 100th 45 RPM Single Featuring Charles Bradley, Sharon Jones, More". Pitchfork. Retrieved March 7, 2021.
  7. ^ "EVER-SOUL RECORDS – Daptone Records". daptonerecords.com. Retrieved March 6, 2021.
  8. ^ "DUNHAM RECORDS – Daptone Records". daptonerecords.com. Retrieved March 6, 2021.
  9. ^ "Daptone Records Presents: Penrose Records". Daptone Records Presents: Penrose Records. Retrieved March 6, 2021.
  10. ^ "WICK RECORDS – Daptone Records". daptonerecords.com. Retrieved March 6, 2021.
  11. ^ Mao, Jeff "Chairman"; Roth, Gabriel (February 11, 2010). "Gabriel Roth, Daptone Records, New York" (Video interview (includes transcript)). Red Bull Music Academy 2010. London.
  12. ^ Daley, Dan (June 2008). "Gabriel Roth: Recording For Daptone Records". Sound on Sound.
  13. ^ BrooklynVegan Staff (February 17, 2009). "Daptone Records robbed…". BrooklynVegan.
  14. ^ Warren, Mathew R. (February 22, 2009). "Brooklyn Music Studio Carries On After Burglary". The New York Times.
  15. ^ "2021 GRAMMYs Awards Show: Complete Nominees List". GRAMMY.com. November 24, 2020. Retrieved March 10, 2021.
  16. ^ a b "2021 Nominees". Libera Awards. Retrieved June 14, 2021.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]