An independent record label, releasing damn good music since 2010
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Wilmington NC * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *



Saturday, January 15, 2011


This one is for you, Tucson.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Monday, January 10, 2011 will always be remembered as 'The Day My Dual Died.'   My pops, Jim Tritten (yep, I'm a Junior, people!) had given me his Dual turntable from the 1970's (model 1257 for all of you techies out there) a few years back (possibly the greatest gift of a lifetime). Unfortunately, this past Monday, that Dual 1257 stopped working.  She provided an amazing listening experience, one that was well suited for approving all test pressings for Fort Lowell Records. We appreciate all the Dual did for us during our inaugural year, and will miss her dearly as Fort Lowell Records grows forward.  Rest in peace, Dual 1257.

The passing on of our Dual 1257 this week was especially hard for us because we are expecting to receive Death Kit's 7inch records in the mail, and in the coming weeks we should be working toward our test pressing for FLR006... both very important events for our lil' ol' label, that would require support of a turntable (and a good one at that) to enjoy. Fortunately for us, Tucson's own Andrew Collberg (an great musician / songwriter that you should become familiar with) came to the rescue!  He just so happened to have a Dual turntable, that his own father had passed on to him, available for us to borrow until we are able to replace our turntable.  The timing could not be more perfect!  Below is a photograph of Andrew's Dual, spinning his own 12inch On The Wreath [Le Pop Music].

While we save our pennies to purchase a Pro-Ject turntable, what will become the official listening station for all future Fort Lowell Records test pressings (and what has been a dream turntable for us for a number of years; since like 1992), we will proudly (and thankfully) enjoying testing our vinyl with Mr. Collberg's Dual turntable, and enjoying his record On The Wreath as well!

Thank you Andrew!
- James Tritten, Fort Lowell Records

Monday, January 10, 2011


I would like to personally thank Jimmy Cracovaner of Fire City Music for sharing a moment of silence with me this morning at 9:00am, to pay respect to the victims from the tragic events of this past weekend. We were in the middle of a business meeting discussing the amazing community of Tucson, AZ and all of it's wonderful musicians, and how our companies could partner together to foster more growth and opportunities for Tucson musicians. This is an awesome city full of beautiful people! We love you Tucson!

- James Tritten, Fort Lowell Records BlogBooster-The most productive way for mobile blogging. BlogBooster is a multi-service blog editor for iPhone, Android, WebOs and your desktop

Saturday, January 8, 2011


Young Mothers with Congresswoman Giffords, Saturday, April 17, 2010, Earth Day

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We love the analog (print) version of this article!

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Sunday, January 2, 2011


Continuing to make customers happy, one at a time.

Saturday, December 25, 2010


Thank you for an amazing first year!

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Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Friday, December 17, 2010


Thank you to KXCI Community Radio and DJs Laura Adams and Jason Repko for inviting us to be a part of Laura's Guest DJ Project she will be debuting in 2011. Laura is looking to connect the city of Tucson with various people in the community by asking them about what music inspired them. She requested that we bring in 4-5 songs that have a significant meaning to us and our journey through life, that tell a story. Here is a list of what we brought in to play:

Echo & the Bunnymen - "Crocodiles" (Shine So Hard)
fIREHOSE - "Brave Captain" (Ragin', Full-On)
Mudhoney - "In 'N' Out of Grace" (Superfuzz Bigmuff).
My Bloody Valentine - "Feed Me With Your Kiss" (Isn't Anything)
Unrest - "Make Out Club" (Perfect Teeth)

You will have to wait to listen to the live broadcast from Laura in 2011 to hear how we wrap all of these great songs into one story. And in addition, we gave Laura an advanced copy of Death Kit's new 7inch record, due out February 22, 2011, for her to debut with the radio broadcast. We will be sure to let you know when to tune in.

Again, thank you KXCI for all of the great support!
- Fort Lowell Records

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


Dead Western Plains continue to stay on the Top Ten in Music chart, rated by Toxic Ranch Record Store for the Tucson Weekly publication.  Congratulations boys, and keep up the great work!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


The test press records for Death Kit's 7inch have arrived, and they sound sweeter than a candy cane dipped in sugar! The official release date is February 22, 2011. Stay tuned for pre-orders coming in the new year! Ask Santa for some new dancing shoes, 'cause you're gonna need them with this wax!

- Fort Lowell Records BlogBooster-The most productive way for mobile blogging. BlogBooster is a multi-service blog editor for iPhone, Android, WebOs and your desktop

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Care of Paul Jenkins and our very own video? (FLR002), please enjoy this oh-so-sweet-jam-of-a-remixxx of Dead Western Plains' psychedelic tune "Alta," laid in ever-so-sexy ...wid' a lil' bit'a o' sum R. Kelly (up 'een heeah)!  ...GO!



When the decision was made to release a 7inch record for the (at the time of decision) less-than-a-year-old Dead Western Plains, we knew that it would only be a matter of time for the world to take to Dead Western Plains the way that the boys and girls in Tucson were doing at that time. Well, their 7inch record has officially been out for only one week now, and there has been an overwhelming amount of interest and support already!, one of our favorite internet radio stations from St. Louis, MO, has already charted the boys from Arizona at #27 in their first week of airplay! In addition to that, they have received support from WESN in Normal, IL, on the show The Quaker Goes Deaf, along with our very own Tracy Shedd! And we cannot forget about all of the support Tucson's KXCI has been giving Dead Western Plains since we leaked their 7inch to them a few months ago! (Did I just type that? Woah!) ...not bad for a band that just celebrated their first year birthday a few months back! Congratulations Dead Western Plains! Kickflip says, "Rock out with your paw out!"

- Fort Lowell Records


Dead Western Plains celebrated the release of their highly acclaimed 7inch record on the evening of November 19, 2010, in Tucson, AZ, at Plush. This video footage was taken by from the audience perspective, and has been posted on the world wide web for your enjoyment. We really enjoyed the second track that comes in about 2:12! Dead Western Plains performs their hit single "Alta" around the 12:45 marker, and a great new tune with a very entertaining video to accompany the live performance at the 23:40 marker. If you were either not able to join us for the celebration or you just simply have to re-live the experience over again, we hope you enjoy this video footage and Dead Western Plains amazing music!

- Fort Lowell Records

Saturday, November 27, 2010


Fort Lowell Records is about to celebrate it's first birthday.  We were not sure if this project would even make it this far, but it has, and we are very excited to already be working on releases for 2011.  To commemorate each year, we've decided to feature a different theme year to year with the artwork for the records released.  We will also partner with a new photographer for each year; establishing continuity between the artwork, but yet diversity between the themes.

As you may have already noticed, 2010 featured the theme of girls.  All of the photographs used for our artwork this past year were taken by Alaina Brownell, a local Tucson photographer.  Alaina, along with Loreto Echevarria, fashion stylist and owner of Lolo Chic, helped shaped the look for what will now be known as "The Year of the Girl" for Fort Lowell Records.  If you have not collected all of these records, be sure you do so soon, before they are all out of print.  For 2011, we will be working with Julia DeConcini, co-owner of the Tucson Community Darkroom, featuring birds as the theme, making next year "The Year of the Bird."  Julia will also carry on the tradition set forth by Alaina of exclusively using photographs taken on film (analog photography).  In addition, the partnership between Fort Lowell Records and Julia's Tucson Community Darkroom will bring more awareness to the analog arts, such as vinyl records and film photography, for years to come.

For our fifth release, first for next year and first to feature our new bird theme, we did not have to look too far from our already existing family of bands.  In September 2010, we introduced you to Jessica Gelt, a Tucson native that is now living in Los Angeles, CA, playing bass in a band called Wet & Reckless.  Jessica also plays in another band, along with fellow Wet & Reckless'er Whitney Blank, that is led by August Brown, who used to play guitar with Tracy Shedd when they both lived in Jacksonville, FL.  Their band is called Death Kit.  We were introduced to Death Kit back when we first heard Wet & Reckless, and knew that we had to do a record with them as well.

To make things extra special for Death Kit's 7inch, video? will be featured on the B-Side, doing a remix of Death Kit's hit "I Can Make You Love Me."  Both bands have been fans of each others work are excited about the collaboration for this record.  And of course, we are just thrilled to bring more work from the boys with video? to you.  This record is sure to get you moving on the dance floor.  Here is the video for Death Kit's song "I Can Make You Love Me," featuring the original version.  You will have to buy the 7inch record from us to hear what video? does to it.

As always, thank you for the support!
"Here, here!" to another great year to come!
- Fort Lowell Records

Saturday, November 20, 2010


Thursday, November 18, 2010, will always been known to us as the day Tucson showed the greatest amount of media support we could have ever wished for:  both local weekly publications, The Caliente and the Tucson Weekly, featured stories on Fort Lowell Records.  We have included all of the articles below on our blog for your reading enjoyment!

Tucson puts a new spin on vinyl 
by Dan Sorenson

James Tritten is not a typical record company executive. For one thing, when his Tucson label "drops" a new record, it's actually a 7-inch vinyl record, not a CD or a digital download.

Tritten is the owner (and just about everything else) of Fort Lowell Records, a tiny label he runs out of the Midtown home he shares with his wife, Tracy Shedd.

There's no promise of a gold record coming out on Fort Lowell Records, either. Not unless it just happens to be colored gold. Tritten says Fort Lowell will press only 500 discs for each of its artists' releases.

And with the exception of a single by Shedd, an established artist, none of the label's artists has released a recording before this. The breathy-voiced Shedd has released several albums and EPs, but she's the exception.

Being previously unrecorded, at least unreleased, is virtually a requirement for a release on Fort Lowell Records, Tritten says. He wants to bring new music to the public, on vinyl.

So far, the Fort Lowell stable has been made up strictly of indie pop groups - Young Mothers, Dead Western Plains and ...Music Video? - but Tritten says he's open to other genres, though "it's got to be good music."

What he offers isn't a traditional record deal. Tritten doesn't sign the bands whose music he has released on vinyl so far. He takes recordings they make and releases them at his expense.

Tritten isn't looking to Fort Lowell to make it rich and quit his day gig as a banquet manager at Marriott.

In fact, he isn't trying to make any money at all from Fort Lowell Records. It's a nonprofit by design, Tritten says.

"I love my career with Marriott," Tritten says. "I don't own a TV. This is what I do when I go home. I run it as somebody might be buying a piece of art, just the same way I collect paintings at my house. It's a living, breathing piece of art," Tritten says of the colored vinyl discs. It's a different color for every release - red, green, white, clear - that he's done so far.

The bands are responsible for their recording costs. Fort Lowell picks up the cost of the art and design - most of it done by Tritten - and has the colored vinyl discs pressed at a plant in California. Then they are distributed for sale at a few local retailers and at Fort Lowell's website,
Tritten says he and Shedd put about $4,500 total into the first three Fort Lowell releases, pressing 500 copies of each - selling 400 and using roughly 100 for promotion.

"It takes 400 records to pay off what it cost to press," Tritten says of self-sustaining system.
They've used the income from those sales to fund each successive release.
Tritten says he won't do a second pressing, regardless of sales.

"I like the idea of a limited release. We talk about it with the bands" beforehand, says Tritten, who'd love to see a Fort Lowell disc so popular and in demand that it would sell on eBay for $500.

And it's not like the pressing limit restricts the bands' release of their music. He says most of the bands also offer digital downloads or sell CDs of the music on their vinyl releases. Tritten says he has even helped the label's bands with digital releases.

Shedd says continuing to put money into Fort Lowell's releases for new bands is OK with her.
"It's all right. We had friends that did it for us. This is just giving back," Shedd says of backing the releases by new bands.

She and Tritten met in high school in Jacksonville, Fla., playing in bands together long before getting romantically involved. While living in Boston, she met Mark Robinson of indie label TeenBeat Records, who recorded and released some of Shedd's songs. She went on to have songs placed on popular TV shows: "One Tree Hill" and "Dawson's Creek."

Tritten said music hasn't been a complete bed of roses. There was a year when he swore off music and even sold his guitars. "In 2004, I came home after the U.S. tour we did for Tracy's album. It was a six-week tour," and Tritten said they weren't getting radio play and nothing seemed to be going right. "I was devastated. I swore it off."

But Tritten said he soon realized music was an important part of his life, whether he was playing in his own group, supporting Shedd's career, working as a booking agent or putting out new music on vinyl. He says it all enriches his life, and he doesn't regret spending money on this latest phase.

"People ask me: 'Are you crazy?' But I didn't have a concern," Tritten insists. "Our first release, Young Mothers (a Tucson band), we're down to 100 copies in less than a year. Young Mothers are kids, people nobody knew."

Zach Toporek, Young Mothers' guitarist and singer, said most of the sales of that April release were through local retailers and online, not through the band's efforts at gigs. He said the band didn't have to do anything other than give Tritten the tapes, and they've even made a little money off the sales.

"It's interactive; you have to do something to make music. And it holds a kind of magic. On top of that, you're always looking for ways to stand out. And I don't know many Tucson groups outside of the Fort Lowell group" releasing vinyl records, Toporek said.

"The seven-inch (vinyl record) paired with a download is the running plan from here on out," Toporek said.

Keyboard player and singer Johnnie Munger of Dead Western Plains said vinyl is more than a gimmick.

"Our band's got a really unique sound, and I think it's a fit for analog type of releases," Munger said. "I think even the size of the release, the 7-inch (one song on each side), is perfect for our band. We like to write in little spurts. Release it and move on.

"I definitely wouldn't be as excited about a CD. They're collectors' items as well."

Dead Western Plains is doing a release show for its new Fort Lowell release, "Alta," on Friday at Plush with Sleep Driver and Holy Rolling Empire.

Tritten says he has always considered the label, the record company issuing a recording, when buying new albums. He said record companies are sometimes "filters," signing only a certain type and quality of act. He says if he buys something from a certain label, he knows he stands a good chance of liking it.

"I wanted to be that for the world with what's happening in Tucson. To say to the world, 'This is music that you ought to be listening to.' 'There are more, a lot more - great bands like Calexico and Howe Gelb in Tucson - worth taking to the world."

Asked what his vinyl obsession is about, James Tritten says he's not part of some retro movement worshipping old things, though he says there is a coolness about vinyl, new or vintage. And it's not strictly an audiophile thing, although, like many audiophiles, he thinks that vinyl does sound "warmer" than digital media versions of the same recording.

"For me, it's more about putting out music," says the 35-year-old, who is also a musician, a guitarist and a former booking agent.

Tritten says it's worthwhile to put music on vinyl because listeners will value the music more if they have to make an effort to hear it.

"There is much more engagement with the music," Tritten says of vinyl, as opposed to the digital format. "The idea of the digital version of music somewhat depressing. I shouldn't say 'depressing'; I have an iPod at work. It's convenient."

If vinyl records motivate people to listen to Fort Lowell artists because they like the color of the disc, love the sound or are into the retro nature of old-technology discs, that's OK with Tritten. They're making an effort, and the music is getting out. Besides, he says, there's something more tangible about a vinyl record than a download, or even a jewel boxed CD.

"We're both obsessed with vinyl," says Shedd, who had her first vinyl record with a 7-inch Christmas release in 1998, a "split" with Tritten's old band, Audio Explorations.

"I love the way music sounds on vinyl. It's warmer," Shedd says. She said what cinched it for her was hearing some tracks she had cut for a EP.

"I was testing out my last EP," listening to the MP3 files of the recording session. But, she says, "as soon as it came out on vinyl," it was love.

Artists big and tiny are going back to black 
by Dan Sorenson

Howe Gelb is doing it. Elvis Presley did it. Elvis Costello and Fred Eaglesmith are still doing it.
Black (or colored) vinyl is in.

Releasing records on vinyl, in some cases only on vinyl (though usually with a free download of a digital version), is increasingly popular.

English singer-songwriter Costello released his 2006 album, "Momofuku," only on vinyl, with an access code that allowed buyers to download a digital version.

Fred Eaglesmith, a Canadian singer-songwriter who has been burning up the pavement in a Ford van for 20 years, released a limited pressing of his 2008 double vinyl LP (that's "long playing" for you novices) "Tinderbox."

And almost everyone between Costello and Eaglesmith is giving vinyl at least an occasional try.
Tucson rocker Gelb's new release, "Howe Gelb and a Band of Gypsies," with a group Spanish musicians, is coming out on vinyl.

In April, Tucson vinyl-only label Fort Lowell Records issued its first release, a green 7-inch disc by the local Young Mothers. Next came another Tucson indie band - ...Music Video? - on a clear disc.

Its third release (on red vinyl) is the only shared release (known as a "split") and the only one with an artist with a previous release - Tracy Shedd with a Los Angeles-based act, Wet & Reckless, on one side. Tritten said a key figure in Wet & Reckless, Jessica Gelt, is now a Los Angeles Times reporter. Gelt used to live in Tucson and still has connections here.

Fort Lowell's latest release, a two-song disc by Tucson's Dead Western Plains, is set for Tuesday

All photos above by Ron Medvescek for Arizona Daily Star

by Stephen Seigel

You'd be hard-pressed to find a more enthusiastic cheerleader for local music than James Tritten. The guitarist for (and husband to) local artist Tracy Shedd, Tritten decided last year to put his money where his mouth is and start a (mostly) locals-only, 7-inch-vinyl-singles-only record label, with the goal of releasing four singles in 2010. It's been a trial by fire, and this week, Tritten meets his goal. After putting out singles by Young Mothers, ... music video? and a split with Los Angeles' Wet and Reckless and Tracy Shedd, his Fort Lowell Records is releasing a white-vinyl 7-inch by Dead Western Plains.

The A-side, "Alta," is a shape-shifting 5 1/2 minutes that begins with an Animal Collective-like tangle of harmonies and whistling (or is that a theremin?) before it all recedes to the background in favor of a jaunty vocal melody that carries the song throughout a series of pleasant interruptions—a complimentary countermelody here, a well-placed breakdown there, before concluding: "Sometimes we fail / If the heavens won't hold you tight / the ground surely will." Cue the lovely, nearly two-minute outro.

The B-side, "Gift Horse in the Mouth," is darker and slightly less complicated, relying on a skittery drumbeat, some nifty interaction between keyboard and guitar, and a sung/spoken-word break. It's only slightly less enjoyable than the much-different "Alta."

As usual, each record comes with a code to download the songs onto your computer or portable device. And when you get to the download page, follow the gray dotted line, and scroll down. Click on the box that cryptically reads "treats are for the curious." It'll give you access to three remixes of "Alta" by Jacob Safari, ... music video? and Kurt Snell.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


Tucson 12 is an awesome television station here in Tucson, AZ, that is über supportive to our community, in particular, the arts.  So much, that they were a major inspiration to us for starting Fort Lowell Records (seriously, read our post from January 10, 2010, here).  Earlier this month, Tucson 12 invited our very own Young Mothers into their studio for a live recording and interview, as part of their D-Town Program.

Watch D-Town featuring Young Mothers' performance and interview here!
(Their feature comes in at the 10min mark)

In addition to their television appearance, Tucson 12 has posted a 2nd song by Young Mothers from the same live studio recording session on their YouTube channel:

You can order Young Mothers' 7inch record, which happens to be our very first release, direct from our website, here (to your right-->). There are still a few copies left, but it is nearly out of print, so don't delay! Young Mothers will also be releasing a new full length CD called Have Some Fun on their own label, December 10th.

As always, thank you for the support!
Enjoy the music!
- Fort Lowell Records

Saturday, November 13, 2010


We can't begin to tell you how excited we are to present to you the debut release for one of Tucson's newest and most innovative bands, Dead Western Plains.  Their very first show can still easily be found on their Facebook page, dated August 22, 2009.  It wasn't shortly after that, we began hearing a buzz around Tucson about Dead Western Plains.  Upon first listen, we heard the call of duty that record labels are faced with everyday; the responsibility of bringing new music to people of the world, and we knew Dead Western Plains was a band that needed to be heard by everyone.  Dead Western Plains is simply amazing, and now that their 7inch is available to order directly from us here on our site, we could not be happier!  We know that the minute you hear those first "Ooo-Waa-Ooo's" on the crisp white vinyl, you are going to be sold for life as a Dead Western Plains junky.  It won't surprise us to hear that you will have listened to your 7inch record so many times that flipping the 7inches of vinyl over, back and forth, measured out to be the distance from here to the moon.

We have been blessed by all of the immediate attention that has been given to Dead Western Plains' debut 7inch.  Here are just a few of the bloggers out there and what they have to say about the boys from Tucson AZ:

Here Come The Flood - The Netherlands
No Modest Bear - Sweden
I'm Into Indie
The Fox & The Chicken
Something Civil
Das Klienicum - Germany
Deck Fight

Pre-order their 7inch record before the official release date of November 23rd, and you will receive a free download link for additional remix tracks of their song "Alta."  This first 25 people to pre-order will also receive a signed copy of the cover art by all five members of Dead Western Plains.  This is one record you will not want to miss!  The link to order is to your right --->

Thank you for the continuous support!
- Fort Lowell Records

Friday, October 15, 2010


Matt and Josh, hosts of Vinyl Vlog (a video web blog that reviews vinyl records via YouTube), take a moment to share with you their first impressions about Fort Lowell Records and the 7inch records we have released; Young Mothers, video?, and our Wet & Reckless + Tracy Shedd split.