Toronto, Canada – R2, a new record label specializing in the promotion of music from the Celtic world, has just made it easier for European Union artists to tap into the North American market. Founded by Patrick Smyth in May 2002, R2 offers its artists a profit-sharing business model and its consumers a timely source of Celtic music at competitive prices.
The label’s roster, dubbed The Celtic Connection, includes previously released Celtic favorites, as well as new recordings by emerging artists.“There’s a wealth of outstanding Celtic music that never gets heard on this side of the ocean,” said Smyth, President of R2. “Typical business agreements in the industry have made it extremely difficult for EU artists to break into the North American market. At R2, our objective is to ensure the artists can thrive here so that we keep this magnificent musical tradition alive.”
What sets R2 apart from other record labels is its profit-sharing business model. R2 offers its artists a much greater percentage of the profits with the sale of each disk than is customary in the industry. For the fans, R2 is able to reduce the costs and delays often associated with importing, by manufacturing locally. With a network of contacts across the U.S. and Canada, R2 offers a range of services, including distribution to retail, direct-to-consumer internet sales, marketing and tour management.
The Celtic Connection launched with recordings by Scottish performers Calasaig (Near and Far), The Easy Club (Chance or Design), Maggie MacInnes (Spirit of Life) and Kirsten Easdale (Be Not Afraid). Additional releases, due out in July 2002, include Jimi McRae (Earthdance), Peatbog Faeries (Mellowosity), The Easy Club (Skirlie Beat) and Finn MacCuill (Sink Ye, Swim Ye).