What is it?
Stones Throw Records is an independent record label. It was founded in 1996 by Chris “Peanut Butter Wolf” Manak in Los Angeles, California. Initially, it was a mecca for underground hip hop, but over time it has expanded its roster to include funk, electronic, punk, soul music — basically anything that Peanut Butter Wolf believes in.
A Stones Throw Documentary, “Our Vinyl Weighs a Ton,” was released in 2013 (now available for streaming on Netflix). The documentary focuses on how the label came to be, and highlights several of the signed artists.
Who’s a member?
Big names on this label include Madlib, NxWorries, Dam-Funk, James Pants, the legendary Madvillian, J Rocc, and the late J Dilla.
One of hip-hop’s most proficient producers, Detroit native J Dilla, released several projects on the label, including the iconic “Donuts” album, which was released three days before his passing in February 2006. This album is the pinnacle of soul-infused beats, and is regarded as one of the greatest hip hop albums of all time.
Stones Throw is also home to one of the hardest working men in music, Madlib. Madlib is a titan of beat making, a crate digger in every sense of the term. He’s sampled jazz, soul, reggae, funk, and virtually every other genre of music. He has produced music for artists ranging from Kanye West to his own alter ego, Quasimoto.
Perhaps the most popular song released by Stones Throw, Aloe Blacc’s “I Need a Dollar” has reached over 31 million views on YouTube and has peaked on the top charts of over 10 countries.
While Stones Throw is home to its fair share of legends, there are even more hidden gems on this label. James Pants, signed in 2008, is the innovator of a genre he calls “Fresh Beat.”
The future of music is brighter than ever, and Stones Throw is nurturing young greats. Soul singer/rapper Anderson .Paak and producer Knxwledge have teamed up to form the duo NxWorries. They released an extremely successful EP in December of 2015, and have just announced an album, titled “Yes Lawd!” (.Paak’s signature adlib), set to release this October.
What’s their mission statement?
As discussed in the documentary, Stones Throw has remained independent, even through financial hardships. Maintaining this independence and love for music has driven Stones Throw to become a leader in the industry. They care about community and are constantly searching for new talent with their forums.
Other places to check out Stones Throw: