Drive Thru Records is one of few indie labels that is not only recognized as an elder of the pop/punk rock music but a brand that continues to be profitable today. The genuine, family-like closeness between bands signed to the label and the label execs is hard to go unnoticed to fans. This closeness is no surprise considering that’s what Drive Thru Records was founded on. Richard and Stephanie Reines are the unstoppable brother/sister duo that are the founders of Drive Thru.
“Both of us were into music from a really young age. Our parents would take us to concerts when I was like 10 years old,” Richard stated in an interview with Rockstarpix.tv.
Soon after realizing their passion for music, Stephanie decided to start her own music magazine in school to get closer to the scene. After managing bands and getting involved with music as much as they could, Richard and Stephanie decided to move to California and see what the two of them could conquer. Not long after moving there, a friend suggested to Richard and Stephanie that they start their own record label. After being in business for 13 years, the Reines’ seemed to have a smart friend.
Besides keeping close ties to their signed acts, Drive Thru Records also strives to keep the music on their label diverse. Yes, there is a majority of people that believe Drive Thru records can be classified only as a pop/punk rock label. Those people look over the fact that there are huge differences in the subcategories of pop/punk rock. There is screamo, powerpop, hardcore, and indie, just to name a few, that are all under Drive Thru’s roof. This is a nice change in comparison to indie labels that stick to one uniform genre for all of their signed acts.
The combination of hospitality and open mindedness was proved successful when their roster started off with bands like New Found Glory, who went on to create two gold albums and sell millions of albums, Finch, Senses Fail, and NOFX.
Their impressive roster was soon torn apart as Drive Thru started having problems with their partner, Geffen Records. Unfortunately Drive Thru lost several good acts to the major label including: The Starting Line (for a brief period), Senses Fail, Finch, and New Found Glory (who signed back with Drive Thru in March 2007).
After losing a big chunk of their roster, Richard and Stephanie decided to pick up and continue on their successful track. Since the Geffen issues, Drive Thru has signed bands like Hellogoodbye, who have made several MTV appearances, Something Corporate, Hidden in Plain View and many others.
Drive Thru has conquered many obstacles that have seemed be impossible for indie labels. Besides continuing success after conflicts with a major label, one example is having its own stage at Warped Tour. In a sea full of major label stages, having your own indie stage is a major feat. Another inspiring indie story that Drive Thru records is their massive fan support. Their is a street team, not for Drive Thru’s bands but for the actual label, in practically every state. Drive Thru is an excellent example of having bands on its label that take full advantage of social networking.
Drive Thru Records continues to have success today through keeping a family like atmosphere to signed artists and keeping an open mind to new music. Their current roster includes:
Richard Reines states there are a couple of key positives that keep him going.
“The positives are having a job I love most of the time, working with and meeting lots of awesome people, watching a band’s dreams come true and being able to experience that with them.”
Written by: Christina Cooper