Branded Records
Whenever you say stuff like "We were the first band to do so and so", you're likely to get yourself in an argument with someone. But, can anybody remember a punk band that started a record company and put out their own independent record before Just Water did it in 1975? Branded Records was legally incorporated, and had a prestigious address in the Woolworth Building (once the tallest building in Manhattan). Never mind that the office really belonged to Mitch's Uncle Herb, and that the accounting fees were waived because the band had no money. It was a real company, where the mail and phones got answered! Although labor was never paid for (the band did the grunt work, and Uncle Herb forwarded the calls and the mail for free), its still impressive that Branded Records made money on The Riff album. I wonder if the Ramones made any money on their first album, regardless of how many they sold? Just Water got about two bucks wholesale for every album, which brought in the $10,000 that supported the band's rehearsals, advertisements, and recordings for the next year. After the Singin' In The Rain single, the Branded Records moniker was put in mothballs until recently, with the release of new music by Just Water, The Big Strong Arms, and Mitchell Dancik & The Senators. It's the same small independent record company it always was. Except now no-one answers the phone.