Lonesome Onry and Mean

Lonesome Onry and Mean: Scott Miller Leaves Label, Licks Stamps

How bad has the music business gotten? We seem to be living in an age when record labels are sinking like the Titanic, when fewer and fewer artists can get a label deal, when the gate to radio is harder to get through than St. Peters Gate.

On the Americana scene, labels like Bloodshot and a few other independents seem to have found a formula for, if not swimming in streams of gold, at least making a living and staying afloat. But the true story is more like venerable bluegrass/roots label Sugar Hill, which has all but folded. Frequent Houston visitor Scott Miller was on Sugar Hill for a while before the Welk Group shut down its Nashville songwriting section and let Miller walk.

Miller kicked around Nashville a while looking for another label, but finally concluded, "I can go broke by myself just as fast as I can being on a label that doesn't get it."

Miller's new single "Cheap Ain't Cheap" from his Freeform Americana Radio chart-topping LP For Crying Out Loud went out to radio last week. In the video (above), we catch a glimpse of the glamour of being the boss of one's own label.

KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
William Michael Smith