At Joyful Noise, I would say about 95% of the new artists we work with begin as tangential relationships which come to us through our existing roster. Our "A&R Process" essentially relies on this network of our existing bands introducing us to new bands. And perhaps no single release on the label has led to more subsequent and important additions to the JNR Family than the first Dumb Numbers record.
Back in 2011, I received a random email from a guy named Adam Harding. He sent me a couple tracks, along with a message that read something like, "hi my name is Adam. I wrote these songs and I had some of my friends play on them." His friends were Lou Barlow, Dale Crover, and Murph from Dinosaur Jr.
In the following months, I worked with Adam to craft the album sequence, and even helped him come up with the band name. (Actually, if memory serves, Adam had learned some secret method for coming up with project titles from David Lynch of all people, and I believe Adam used this method to arrive at the name "Dumb Numbers". But my role was more in encouraging Adam to approach this as a new band, rather than a solo project released under the name "Adam Harding".)
It is now 8 years after the album's release, and Adam is not only still a great friend, artist, and collaborator with the label, but a significant number of those friends Adam invited to play on this first album have become proper artists on the label. This release allowed us to form relationships with Lou Barlow (who we signed as a solo artist in addition to his band Sebadoh), Dale Crover (we released his first full-length solo album ever, which was a personal high-point of my career), David Yow, Murph, and others.
The point is: there are very few releases that have had such a tremendous impact on what Joyful Noise has become. And I am tremendously grateful, not only to have released this incredible album, but also for the lasting relationships that this album has created. More than probably any other release, this album helped shape the Joyful Noise to come.