The American Association of Independent Music (A2IM) is proud to announce that the fourth annual Libera Awards Lifetime Achievement Award will honor Pat Chin, co-founder of VP Records, for innovation in the independent music industry. Chin will be honored with the award on June 25 at NYC’s Highline Ballroom during A2IM’s 10th Anniversary Indie Week when A2IM members from across the U.S. will meet along with their International colleagues from over a dozen countries around the world. In what has now become a Libera Awards tradition, 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award winner Bruce Iglauer, founder of Alligator Records, will present Pat Chin with the award.
With more than 50 years in the music business, Pat Chin has always been a champion for innovative, independent music and a pioneer among women in the music industry. From the retail store founded with her late husband Vincent “Randy” Chin in their native Kingston, Jamaica, the Chin family was present at the birth of reggae music. In 1979, the family moved their business to Jamaica, New York and adopted the moniker “VP” (for Vincent and Pat). As a woman in the male-dominated world of reggae, “Miss Pat” (as she is affectionately known) built a business on strong relationships with artists, producers, suppliers and an ever-growing fan base. Miss Pat is the heart of VP Records and continues to serve as a powerful example of female leadership in business and the community.
Under her leadership, VP Records created a reggae empire, contributing to the careers of countless artists including Shabba Ranks, Sean Paul, Maxi Priest, Gyptian, Bunji Garlin, Beenie Man, Lady Saw, Sizzla, Mavado and Etana among others. With the passing of Vincent Chin in 2003, her children and grandchildren have taken on leadership of the day-to-day operations as Miss Pat extends her legacy through her philanthropic efforts. To commemorate the 35th anniversary of VP Records in the United States, the family collaborated with celebrated graphic artist Michael Thompson to establish a reggae Archive titled A Reggae Music Journey, a mobile exhibit of the history of reggae. Their vision is to create a permanent home for the exhibit and establish a reggae museum in Jamaica. With her unique spirit and indefatigable energy, Pat Chin continues her musical journey.
Bruce Iglauer of Alligator Records, the winner of the 2014 A2IM Libera Awards Lifetime Achievement Award, will present Pat with the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award. Bruce is the founder of the independent record label Alligator Records. Iglauer, in addition to his numerous philanthropic and artist support efforts, has spent his career championing blues and roots rock, jumpstarting the careers of new talent or renewing the careers of legendary artists including Koko Taylor, Albert Collins, Lonnie Brooks, Mavis Staples and Charlie Musselwhite, among many others. Iglauer was a longtime board member of A2IM who stepped down in July 2014 due to term limits.
Celebrating its 10th anniversary, A2IM is a 501(c)(6) not-for-profit trade organization headquartered in New York City representing a broad coalition of over 350 Independently-owned American music label small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The organization represents Independents’ interest in the marketplace, in the media, on Capitol Hill, and as part of the global music community, as well as, supports a key segment of America’s creative class and the small business community that represents America’s cultural and musical genre diversity. Billboard Magazine, using Nielsen SoundScan data, identified the Independent music label sector as 35.1 percent of the music industry’s U.S. recorded music sales market in 2014 based on copyright ownership, making Independent labels collectively the largest music industry segment.
In 2013, the winner of the A2IM Libera Awards Lifetime Achievement Award was Tom Silverman of TommY BoY Entertainment. The 2012 A2IM Libera Lifetime Achievement Award was given to Martin Mills of Beggars Group. Nominations for the 2015 Libera Awards will be announced Wednesday, April 29 and voting will open immediately to the A2IM independent music community.