|New Amsterdam Records|
|Founder||Judd Greenstein, Sarah Kirkland Snider, William Brittelle|
|Distributor(s)||Nonesuch Records, Naxos Records|
|Genre||Contemporary classical, avant-garde|
|Country of origin||U.S.|
|Location||New York City|
New Amsterdam Records is an independent record label in New York City that was formed in 2008 by Judd Greenstein, Sarah Kirkland Snider, and William Brittelle to promote classically trained musicians who fall between traditional genre boundaries. Often abbreviated as NewAm, the organization has been hailed as a central force in creating the "indie-classical" scene., and was granted 501(c)(3) status in 2011 with the mission of "supporting and representing the post-genre new music community."
New Amsterdam Records was founded to support the developing genre of music coming from people with great educations in composition who were also influenced by pop and jazz music and did not fit into the music industry binary of classical or pop. NewAm has been described favorably by Seth Colter Walls in Newsweek as breaking down genre boundaries, "making a nice little tradition out of breaking tradition," and striking a healthy balance between old traditions (such as classical and jazz) and contemporary music."
In an interview with mental floss magazine, co-founder Judd Greenstein explains that they look for artists "whose work is a reflection of truly integrated musical influences. In other words, we don’t want classical-goes-rock or electronic-music-with-some-violins – we want music where people are being as personal and honest as they can be, while opening themselves up fully to all the music that they love."
Furthermore, in an interview with I Care If You Listen, co-founders and co-artistic directors William Brittelle, Judd Greenstein, and Sarah Kirkland Snider stated that “This variety stems from the inherent variety of individual composers not just as composers, but as listeners, each with a unique experience of listening to music in the world, and each therefore with a unique way of manifesting that experience in newly-created art. This is what we call a musical “voice,” and the voices of composers we release draw from an innumerable set of influences. A post-genre approach to composition inherently breeds a distinctiveness in those composers’ musical voices.”
Making an album can involve many costs, such as renting a recording studio, paying the musicians, creating album art, and manufacturing copies of the album. At New Amsterdam, the musician, not the label, picks up the cost of making the album, but the musician gets a higher percentage of royalties that come from sales.
In 2017, the label revamped its model to function as an all-in-one non-profit record label, presenter and artist service organization, aiming to create long-term sustainability in the face of a quickly changing music industry. Their support continues to extend far beyond album distribution, and artists continue to retain full ownership of their recordings. NewAm partners with artists to share the costs through project-specific fundraising and grants 100% of album sales directly to the artists.
In 2019 New Amsterdam announced two initiatives, including a new partnership with Nonesuch Records and the Windmill Series, a digitally-focused set of releases made available to subscribers in addition to the existing release schedule. The Nonesuch partnership sees the release of approximately three albums per year to support contemporary American composers in realizing ambitious creative projects, with initial releases from composers William Brittelle, Caroline Shaw, and Daniel Wohl. The Windmill Series has seen releases from artists including Arooj Aftab, Timo Andres, Gemma Peacocke, and more. After a subscription exclusivity period, Windmill Series releases are available digitally worldwide.
They are distributed by Naxos Records in North America.
Justin Davidson, music critic for New York, wrote, "They're part of this generation of people who get out of music school with all of these incredible skills, and all of this culture, and all of this creativity — fully aware that nobody is going to hand them a career. There's no superstructure of an established music industry that is going to pay any attention to these people, because they're not even paying attention to the much more established, mainstream conductors and violinists and orchestras. The ability to get noticed by having some record executive take an interest in you and record you — you know, that's really practically a thing of the past. If you want to make recordings, you've really got to do it yourself."
For New Amsterdam's and (Le) Poisson Rouge's 10-Year Anniversary show in 2018, Davidson write “In their decade of existence, (Le) Poisson Rouge and New Amsterdam have helped seed whole forests of music far beyond the five boroughs.”
NewAm have been compared to Bang on a Can, who also built their own label, community, and performance circuit, in a similar manner, 20 years ago. The difference, however, between the two is that Bang on a Can shared a common musical aesthetic — minimalism — whereas NewAm is more of a musical umbrella. NewAm's artists have become increasingly popular among a broad public while Bang on a Can's primary supporters continue to be larger, more established cultural institutions. "The interesting thing about this group of people, and New Amsterdam, is the real lack of interest in anything that you could call aesthetic categories, or rules about what does and doesn't belong in their sphere of influence," Justin Davidson says.
|November 20, 2020||Joseph C. Phillips Jr., Numinous||The Grey Land|
|November 13, 2020||Tristan Perich||Drift Multiply|
|October 9, 2020||Travis Laplante, Yarn/Wire||Inner Garden|
|September 29, 2020||Matthew Evan Taylor||The Unheard Mixtapes|
|September 25, 2020||Sarah Kirkland Snider||Mass for the Endangered|
|September 18, 2020||Michi Wiancko||Planetary Candidate|
|August 21, 2020||Roomful of Teeth||The Ascendant - Just Constellations|
|August 7, 2020||Hub New Music, Robert Honstein||Soul House|
|July 10, 2020||Jacob Cooper||Terrain|
|June 5, 2020||Molly Joyce||Breaking and Entering|
|May 22, 2020||Methods Body||Methods Body|
|March 4, 2020||iT Boy||The Nail House EP|
|April 24, 2020||Bec Plexus||Sticklip|
|April 3, 2020||Ted Hearne||Place|
|February 14, 2020||yMusic||Ecstatic Science|
|August 30, 2019||Nathalie Joachim, Spektral Quartet||Fanm d'Ayiti|
|May 31, 2019||Daniel Wohl||État|
|May 3, 2019||William Brittelle, Wye Oak (band), Brooklyn Youth Chorus, Metropolis Ensemble||Spiritual America|
|April 19, 2019||Caroline Shaw and Attacca Quartet||Orange|
|November 14, 2018||Padma Newsome||The Vanity of trees|
|October 26, 2018||Brooklyn Youth Chorus||Silent Voices|
|September 28, 2018||Aizuri Quartet||Blueprinting|
|September 7, 2018||Mary Halvorson and Robbie Lee||Seed Triangular|
|May 25, 2018||The Hands Free||The Hands Free|
|April 26, 2018||Tigue||Strange Paradise|
|March 30, 2018||Invisible Anatomy||Dissections|
|February 23, 2018||Subtle Degrees||A Dance That Empties|
|January 26, 2018||John Hollenbeck (musician) Large Ensemble||All Can Work|
|November 17, 2017||Emily Pinkerton, Patrick Burke, and NOW Ensemble||Rounder Songs|
|October 6, 2017||Steven Mackey and Jason Treuting||Orpheus Unsung|
|August 25, 2017||Nick Photinos||Petits Artéfacts|
|June 16, 2017||Amir ElSaffar||Not Two|
|March 31, 2017||Brooklyn Youth Chorus||Black Mountain Songs|
|March 17, 2017||Jasper String Quartet||Unbound|
|January 27, 2017||Molly Joyce||Lean Back and Release|
|November 18, 2016||Vicky Chow||A O R T A|
|November 4, 2016||Qasim Naqvi||Chronology|
|October 28, 2016||The Living Earth Show||Dance Music|
|September 30, 2016||Darcy James Argue's Secret Society||Real Enemies|
|August 26, 2016||Battle Trance||Blade of Love|
|May 13, 2016||Roomful of Teeth, Glenn Kotche, Jeffrey Zeigler||The Colorado|
|April 29, 2016||Deerhoof & Ensemble Dal Niente||Balter / Saunier|
|March 25, 2016||Michael Mizrahi||Currents|
|February 29, 2016||Finnegan Shanahan||The Two Halves|
|January 29, 2016||Daniel Wohl||Holographic|
|November 13, 2015||TIGUE||Peaks|
|October 30, 2015||Ted Hearne||The Source|
|September 4, 2015||Sarah Kirkland Snider||Unremembered|
|August 28, 2015||Will Mason Ensemble||Beams of the Huge Night|
|May 26, 2015||NOW Ensemble||Dreamfall|
|April 28, 2015||Roomful of Teeth||Render|
|March 31, 2015||Missy Mazzoli||Vespers for a New Dark Age|
|October 28, 2014||Vicky Chow||Tristan Perich: Surface Image|
|September 30, 2014||yMusic||Balance Problems|
|August 26, 2014||Battle Trance||Palace of Wind|
|July 29, 2014||No Lands||Negative Space|
|April 29, 2014||Olga Bell||Krai|
|June 25, 2013||Daniel Wohl||Corps Exquis|
|April 30, 2013||Darcy James Argue's Secret Society||Brooklyn Babylon|
|March 26, 2013||Jace Clayton||The Julius Eastman Memory Depot|
|March 26, 2013||Nadia Sirota||Baroque|
|May 29, 2012||Michael Mizrahi||The Bright Motion|
|April 26, 2011||yMusic||Beautiful Mechanical|
|November 28, 2011||NOW Ensemble||Awake|
|November 16, 2010||Janus||I am (not)|
|November 16, 2010||Newspeak||Sweet Light Crude|
|October 26, 2010||Sarah Kirkland Snider||Penelope|
|September 28, 2010||Victoire||Cathedral City|
|June 29, 2010||William Brittelle||Television Landscape|
|May 25, 2010||Matt Marks||The Little Death: Vol. 1|
|May 25, 2010||Corey Dargel||Someone Will Take Care of Me|
|January 26, 2010||itsnotyouitsme||Fallen Nonuments|
|January 26, 2010||Sam Sadigursky||words project iii: miniatures|
|May 19, 2009||Nadia Sirota||first things first|
|May 12, 2009||Darcy James Argue's Secret Society||Infernal Machines|
|January 27, 2009||QQQ||Unpacking the Trailer...|
|January 27, 2009||Andrew McKenna Lee||Gravity and Air|
|September 9, 2008||Sam Sadigursky||Words Project II|
|October 28, 2008||Corey Dargel||Other People's Love Songs|
|August 29, 2008||Ted Hearne||Katrina Ballads|
|June 6, 2008||Build||Build|
|May 1, 2008||William Brittelle||Mohair Time Warp|
|January 8, 2008||itsnotyouitsme||walled gardens|
|January 8, 2008||NOW Ensemble||NOW|
|May 26, 2007||Sam Sadigursky||The Words Project|
- Jack S, "New Amsterdam Records Unveils New Releases, Live Premiere and Free MP3s", March 5, 2010, accessed July 7, 2010
- "About", accessed July 24, 2017
- Joseph Dalton, "On Record - An Overview of the State of Contemporary Music Recording (Part 1): Still Spinning", June 8, 2009, accessed July 7, 2010
- Seth Colter Walls, "Jazz Standards That Aren’t'", April 25, 2009, accessed July 7, 2010
- David K. Israel, "How to Start a Record Label, with New Amsterdam Records" Archived 2011-06-15 at the Wayback Machine, May 5, 2009, accessed July 7, 2010
- Ihnen, Megan (2018-12-27). "5 Questions to New Amsterdam Records on their 10th Anniversary". I CARE IF YOU LISTEN. Retrieved 2019-04-29.
- Kadet, Anne (27 May 2016). "Brooklyn Label Makes Music, but Not Much Money". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 20 December 2016.
- "New Amsterdam, Nonesuch Records Announce Partnership to Support Contemporary American Composers - Nonesuch Records". Nonesuch Records Official Website. Retrieved 2019-04-29.
- "New Amsterdam Records - Windmill Series". New Amsterdam Records. Retrieved 2019-04-29.
- Tom Vitale, "NPR's All Things Considered, 'A New Label for Music's New Blood'", May 29, 2008, accessed June 30, 2010
- "On 10 Years of the New New-Music Scene, and 30 Years of My Own". www.vulture.com. 8 June 2018. Retrieved 2019-04-29.