Saddle Creek Records

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Saddle Creek Records
Saddle Creek Records logo.png
Founded 1993
Founder Mike Mogis
Justin Oberst
Distributor(s) Alternative Distribution Alliance (US)
Genre Rock
Country of origin USA
Location Omaha, Nebraska
Official website

Saddle Creek Records is an American record label based in Omaha, Nebraska. Started as a college class project on entrepreneurship, the label was founded by Mike Mogis and Justin Oberst in 1993 (as Lumberjack Records). Mogis soon turned over his role in the company to Robb Nansel. The label is named after Saddle Creek Road, a street that cuts through the east side of midtown Omaha, and the beginnings of a scene whose members included Conor Oberst (then a solo artist, currently of Bright Eyes, Conor Oberst and the Mystic Valley Band, Desaparecidos and Monsters of Folk), Tim Kasher (then of Slowdown Virginia, currently of Cursive and The Good Life), and others. Collectively, they were known unofficially as the "Creekers". Saddle Creek first appeared in print on a show flyer, offering to "Spend an evening with Saddle Creek" (later to be the title of the label's DVD.)[1] Saddle Creek became an incorporated entity as a result of a class project on entrepreneurship. Distribution is handled by the Alternative Distribution Alliance, which is under the Warner Music Group umbrella.

Saddle Creek Records continues to be the flagship label of a style of music called "The Omaha Sound", characterized by a slight country twang. This is increasingly inaccurate, though, with the rise of more electronic sounds such as those favored by The Faint and Broken Spindles. The eclectic sounds of Saddle Creek's disparate member bands is somewhat explained by their history; a number of the original members of the label attended grade school together.[2] A "sister label", of sorts, to Saddle Creek is Team Love, started by Conor Oberst in 2004.


The label opened arms to their first bands not based in Omaha in 2001 with releases by Now It's Overhead and Sorry About Dresden. Other non-Nebraskan artists followed, including Los Angeles's Rilo Kiley, Eric Bachmann (formerly leader of Archers of Loaf and Crooked Fingers from North Carolina), Georgie James (Washington D.C.), Two Gallants (San Francisco), and most recently Tokyo Police Club (Toronto).[3]

In 2005, Spend an Evening with Saddle Creek, a documentary detailing the first ten years of the record label's history, was released. The DVD features extensive interviews with the Saddle Creek bands, archival footage, and rare live performances.

On June 8, 2007, the label opened their own music venue named Slowdown[4] (after the group Slowdown Virginia), located in downtown Omaha, Nebraska.




See also[edit]


  1. ^ Spend an Evening With Saddle Creek. Dir. Jason Kulbel and Rob Walters. DVD. Plexifilm, 2005.
  2. ^ Justin Oberst was 13 years old at the time of the first Lumberjack release, Conor Oberst's "Water"
  3. ^ Roy, Jessica. "I Like That Bitch's Life: How Jenny Lewis Was a Twee Teen's Dream". New York. Retrieved 28 March 2016. 
  4. ^ Slowdown

External links[edit]