Drag City (record label)

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Drag City
Founded1990 (1990)
FounderDan Koretzky
Dan Osborn
Country of originUnited States
LocationChicago, Illinois

Drag City is an American independent record label based in Chicago, Illinois. Established in the city in 1990 by Dan Koretzky and Dan Osborn, its first release was a Royal Trux single ("Hero Zero" - DC1).[1] It specializes in indie rock, noise rock, psychedelic folk, alternative country, and experimental music. The label has featured numerous critically acclaimed artists, including Bonnie 'Prince' Billy, Bill Callahan, Joanna Newsom, and Silver Jews.


The label released the US version of Scott Walker's Tilt in 1997, after the label approached him wishing to give the album a US release.[2] Walker described releasing the album on the indie label as "an experiment".[2] Several members of Drag City's staff have played in bands; press-chief Gene Booth played keyboards and guitar in USA, and Booth, head of sales Rian Murphy, and founder Dan Koretzky all played in Mantis.[3] Booth was also a member of Chestnut Station.[3]

In recent years, they have expanded their catalog to include alternative comedy releases, with recent outputs from Fred Armisen, Neil Hamburger, and Andy Kaufman among others, and reissues, notably by Gary Higgins and Death.[4][failed verification] In 1997, Drag City began publishing printed works such as the literary magazine The Minus Times and Neil Hagerty's novel Victory Chimp.[5] The label distributed the 2013 documentary The Source Family.[6] After years of refusing to release its artists' music on streaming platforms, the label finally made its music available for streaming via Apple Music in July 2017.[7]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Howland, Don (1993) "Drag Kings: Chicago's Drag City is America's Best Record Label", SPIN, November 1993, p. 101-2, 152-3, retrieved 2010-12-05
  2. ^ a b Morris, Chris (1997) "Drag City Goes Full 'Tilt' on Walker", Billboard, August 23, 1997, p. 53-4, retrieved 2010-12-05
  3. ^ a b Morris, Chris (1998) "Declarations of Independents: Flag Waving", Billboard, June 13, 1998, p. 77; retrieved 2010-12-05
  4. ^ Zevolli, Giuseppe (2014-07-11). "Rian Murphy from Drag City on The Independent Label Market". Drowned in Sound. Archived from the original on 2016-05-24. Retrieved 2016-04-25.
  5. ^ Nelson, Sean (October 21–27, 1999). "Record Label Turns to publishing". The Stranger. Retrieved April 26, 2014.
  6. ^ Gallo, Phil (February 6, 2013). "Drag City Film Distribution to Release 'The Source Family' Doc in May". Billboard. Retrieved April 26, 2014.
  7. ^ Sodomsky, Sam (2017-06-27). "What to Stream From Drag City's Catalog, Now on Apple Music". Pitchfork. Retrieved 2018-03-02.