Label Launch: Illumin Records Present J. Graves’ ‘Lo The Mourning’

A brand-new label, Illumin Records, presents J. Graves’ “Lo The Mourning,” out May 10 as the label’s first single.

“I’ve dreamed of resurrecting my mom’s record label since the moment I realized not everyone’s mom just up and starts a record label,” J. Graves says. “This reformation is so incredibly special to me, and I am deeply connected to Illumin’s core tenements. There are so many incredible womxn and GNC artists that should be heard, and Illumin will work relentlessly to make sure people are going to listen. Illumin, however, is much more than a record label—Illumin is a movement. Illumin is a momentous shift from the way things used to be to the way things always should have been. We are disrupting the past, present, and future of music. We are making our own rules. We are Illumin Records.”

This is not your mother’s record label, but it is founder Jessa Graves’. In the early 90s, Annie Graves started Illumin Records to independently release her own music. Twenty-six years later, her daughter, Jessa Graves (front woman of J. Graves and entrepreneur) resurrects Illumin Records with a revitalized mission at the intersection of music, tech, and advocacy. Illumin redefines the role of record label for womxn and gnc-led projects through education, transparency, empowerment, and new deal structures leveraging tokenization and blockchain technology.

Illumin Records already has Portland’s J. Graves, Austin’s Van Mary, and LA’s Egg Drop Soup on their roster, with more projects on the way. The structurally innovative label follows an artist accelerator framework called “WTR RISE,” developed in partnership with Women That Rock’s founder, Andie Aronow, adjunct professor at the Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music at NYU.

The strategic partnership between Illumin and Women That Rock will grant the Illumin roster direct access to high-level artist management, development, marketing, mentorship, and support through all channels of WTR, the music discovery platform dedicated to supporting the best up-and-coming womxn in music, with live event production, marketing and promotion, digital media, presented tours, and a new licensing division.

Fittingly enough, the label will officially launch on Mother’s Day with the J. Graves single, “Lo The Mourning,” which we are premiering here. “Lo The Mourning” is an emotional, post-punk roller coaster of swirling guitars, melodic vocals, and a thundering rhythm section which brings to mind bands like Sleater Kinney, the Gossip, and Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

Preorder the album here and check out the label here.

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