White Mystery has self-released new music on the same day, every year, since 2009. Lee from Mooner was curious about how a band with just two people managed to play 250 shows and also create, produce, and distribute a double album “DUBBLE DRAGON” all in one year. Here’s a conversation with Miss Alex White about how to release your own vinyl records.

The Duplication Process:

First you record in the studio and have your mixing engineer mix the tracks. After the mixes are finalized, have your engineer suggest someone that can master the recordings for vinyl specifically. This step is very important. The mastering engineer makes your final mixes feel congruent and makes them sound good for the record format. It ensures that the tracks are loud and beefy enough but not so loud that the needle skips on the copies. There are a lot of vinyl-specific things to watch for and a good mastering engineer with vinyl experience will know what to look for. After this, send the masters to production plant of your choosing.

Alex has used United Record Pressing in Nashville for her releases. It’s a one-stop shop for lacquer, metal plates and duplication. She fills out the order form on the website and then sends a high quality CD to the vinyl plant.

2014_WM_Photo_Dubble_Dragon_Test_PressSince she releases an album on April every year, she typically gets her order in by December 1st, gets a test pressing in early February, waits for about a month after the test is approved and then gives about a week to receive shipment and assemble the product. 3-4 months is a reasonable timeline. There are sometimes snags, like defects in the test pressings that add extra wait time. For example, United contacted Alex with a delay: they flubbed up the lacquer and had to redo it. It took a 3-4 more weeks. There was one instance in which she caught a defect that was not caught by the plant and they fixed that.

Make sure you budget for shipping. Try and get a quote for freight from the plant. If someone in your band or a friend has a job that offers discounts on shipping or they work for UPS, use that resource.

Also, form a relationship with the liaison at the plant. Check in weekly, show gratitude to the person handling your project.

After receiving the product, Alex went with I Love Imprint, a printing broker, to get her sleeves, inserts and printing.
They receive jobs from client and go out and find the best price for you.

Receive final product
Assemble your product (get slipcover bags)

Book your shows, sell, sell, sell and make your money back.


This is a simplified synopsis, and of course there’s more steps to consider, like commissioning an artist to create your graphics, how to layout art files, or whether to include download cards. Perhaps those could be discussed on a later date 🙂

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