Warner Music Canada and Warner Music India are collaborating on a new joint venture named 91 NORTH RECORDS. This project is aimed at supporting artists with South Asian heritage.
Leading the charge is artist and producer Ikwinder “Ikky” Singh, who has been announced as the Creative Director for this collaborative effort.
Having previously founded his own label, 4N Records, in partnership with Warner Music and Coalition Music back in 2021, Ikky is well-versed in the industry.
The debut signings for 91 NORTH RECORDS are Canadian-based artists Karan Aujla and Jonita Gandhi. They will closely collaborate with Ikky, alongside A&R Director, Charlie B.
The name of the label, 91 NORTH RECORDS, is a nod to both countries, referencing India’s country code and Canada’s geographical location. The label’s logo draws inspiration from India’s national flower, the lotus.
The launch event for 91 NORTH RECORDS was held at the Warner Music Canada offices in Toronto on August 22nd.
Ikky, the Creative Director, shared, “I’ve always been fascinated by the blending of Indian and Western sounds into culturally impactful, innovative music. 91 NORTH RECORDS exists to elevate artists pursuing this fusion. Punjabi and South Asian music already competes worldwide, and I’m thrilled to collaborate with emerging talents, showcasing and amplifying what they have to offer. This is no experiment; it’s the future.”
Jay Mehta, Managing Director of Warner Music India said, “We’re so excited by the launch of 91 NORTH RECORDS. This venture not only celebrates the musical styles of artists with South Asian heritage but also leverages the market potential of uniting two distinct fan bases to bring this music to the global stage. This is certainly going to be a game-changer initiative for artists who will now have global support from A&R, marketing, collaborations and more.”
Kristen Burke, President of Warner Music Canada, added, “91 NORTH RECORDS is dedicated to celebrating and amplifying Indian culture. There is an incredible new generation of talent rising, influenced by their South Asian heritage, and we want to make sure these artists are represented both here and around the world. This new venture allows artists to be truly authentic, and our global network gives us the opportunity to showcase their culture on a global stage.”
Alfonso Perez-Soto, President of Emerging Markets at Warner Music, highlighted the evolving Punjabi music scene, noting its transformation from a regional genre to a global force. “91 NORTH RECORDS will act as the vital bridge between East and West – uniting talent, cultures, and ideas, and cementing a movement that is here to stay. At Warner Music, we will continue to champion initiatives like this for the love of music, artists, and fans alike.”
The South Asian community’s influence is profound, with almost 2.6 million people of South Asian heritage residing in Canada. This venture holds great promise for emerging artists who are making their mark both in Canada and on the international stage, while also connecting the South Asian diaspora across the continents. According to IFPI figures, three of the top 10 tracks in India in 2022 were by Punjabi-Canadian artists, underscoring the strong musical bond between the two regions.