Def Pressé is thrilled to announce its exclusive partnership with KPM/EMI to officially open KPM’s iconic music and sound design library for the first time ever. A production music label dating back to 1956, the KPM library contains over 30,000 original recordings of non-commercial music made for licensed use in television, film, radio, or any other media outlet. Ranging from cinematic symphonic themes to bizarre sound effects, elaborate environmental landscapes of computer-synth orchestras to film scores, these licensed recordings, commissioned without the pressure of generating commercial hits, have long been a treasure trove for producers digging for samples. This adventurous undertaking, initiated by Def Pressé in affiliation with EMI Production Music’s hip-hop outfit The Real Fifth, will see a handful of carefully selected composers and sound-excavationists creating all-new records alongside an array of featured singers, rappers, and instrumentalists, to be released by Def Pressé in two forthcoming series: KPM Crate Diggers and KPM Originals.
The KPM Crate Diggers series will consist of new albums by select producers made entirely of samples from the KPM archives, as well as other renowned library music labels including Coloursound, SelectedSound, Themes International, Conroy Recorded Music Library, and Francis, Day & Hunter, all of which Def Pressé artists also have exclusive access to. These releases will be entered into the KPM archives for future use as “library music,” making these producers “KPM Artists” in their own right. The KPM Crate Diggers series will kick off with Damu The Fudgemunk, and see forthcoming releases from Jazzy Jeff, Stro Elliot (of The Roots), J-Live, Chris Dave and many others to be announced in the coming months.
The KPM Originals series will see new albums composed of entirely new, sample-free compositions, released by Def Pressé and added into the KPM catalog, also for future use as “library music.” Artists confirmed to participate in the KPM Originals series include Bastien Keb, Corey King, and Chris Dave, with more to be announced in the coming months.
Kicking off the KPM Crate Diggers series is Conversation Peace (out September 3rd), a new album from Damu The Fudgemunk, the Washington, DC-based musician and producer known for his many collaborations with Raw Poetic, Archie Shepp, Blu, and others, in addition to his own acclaimed solo work. “The music that would become Conversation Peace began with a trip to KPM’s London HQ in late January of 2020,” says Earl Davis (aka Damu the Fudgemunk). “I had just finished wrapping up post-production on my album Ocean Bridges with Archie Shepp and Raw Poetic. As a record collector, I’m very familiar with the legacy of the KPM brand. Listening to the entire catalog was a history lesson and the amount of great composers and compositions in the recordings was endless. As a producer looking for textures, inspiration, and grooves, the abundance of those things made it extremely difficult to narrow down what I wanted to use. From drums to sound FX to orchestras to small rhythm sections to ambient noises, I heard a wide variety of things and they were all so well produced and recorded. The history of KPM and the opportunity to collaborate with the prestigious lineage made the stakes very high for me and I knew I needed to deliver a quality product. It’s an honor to be the first artist to release a KPM Crate Diggers title.”
“Damu the Fudgemunk came to our studio in London to carefully dig his way through the whole KPM 1000 series,” says Peter Clarke of EMI Production Music. “If anyone is in doubt about sampling being an artform, they just need to watch him work! It’s great to breathe new life into all these old recordings, too. And then place it straight back into library music for use in media. Exactly how it was originally intended.”