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[MXD Networking @ SPOT] Meet Downtown Records

Asbjørn Hæstrup

Once again this year, we are inviting several key international industry professionals to attend SPOT Festival. All of them will be joining us at the MXD Superball @ RADAR as part of the SPOT+ programme, but until the festival kicks off on May 4th, we will be bringing you brief introductions to them, including where they come from, what companies they work for, what bands they want to check out at SPOT, and much more. We look forward to seeing Briana Cheng of Downtown Records.

Name: Briana Cheng

Company: Downtown Records, New York

Title: A&R

Can you tell us a bit about the company’s history and roster?
Downtown Records is an independent label, founded by two best friends Josh Deutsch and Terence Lam in 2006. From picking up Gnarls Barkley as their first signing to introducing the world to Major Lazer, Santigold, and Chet Faker, Downtown has always been at the forefront of cutting edge music. These days, we work with artists as varied as indie rock stalwarts San Fermin, electronic wunderkind Mura Masa and underground rap princess Tommy Genesis. I’m in the A&R department, so I’m always chasing down new acts, remixes, features, collaborators, etc.

What was the moment you decided you wanted to work with music?
When I had my own music blog via Tumblr and realized there is a community of people who cared about music as much as I did, which was overly obsessive at the time ( :

Who are you looking forward to seeing at Spot Festival this year?
I’m really interested in seeing Scandinavian rappers and some of the acts from SPOT’s Spotify playlist. I’d like to check out Blondage, Code Walk, Yung, Sigrid, THANKS and Velvet Volume.

Best live show you’ve ever seen, hands down?
Future Islands at Webster Hall, where I somehow ended up crowd surfing as most of 4AD watched from above the balcony.