Larry Livermore Talks ‘How To Ru(i)n A Record Label’ at Quimby’s
Lookout Records may not be as well-known in the ranks of the great indie labels as some—say, Matador or Touch & Go—but no entity looms larger in the world of pop-punk over the last three decades. From the time when Detroit native Lawrence Hayes, better known as Larry Livermore, founded the label in 1987, though the years when he helped bring bands such as local antiheroes Screeching Weasel, Operation Ivy, and the eventual platinum superstars Green Day to the public, most of the music Lookout issues was second to none when it came to faster-louder-but-always-tuneful.
Much be can be learned from the way Lookout operated in those years, just as there are plenty of cautionary tales to glean from the label’s decline, which began when Livermore left in 1997. (Things finally came to an end a few years later.) All of those stories are told by Livermore in the same engaging voice that many of us first encountered in his long-running column in Maximum Rocknroll via his new book for Don Giovanni Records, How to Ru(i)n A Record Label.
The author will be reading from, discussing, and signing this instant underground classic at 7 p.m. tomorrow, Saturday, at (where else?) Quimby’s Bookstore, 1854 North Ave., in a much-anticipated free event. Show up and cheer—or heckle; it is, after all, punk rock. And meanwhile, enjoy this excerpt courtesy of The Talkhouse and this interview from Willamette Week hinting at some of what Chicagoans can expect.