First Word Records was born in 2003 as a collaboration between myself (Aly Gillani - at that time a club promoter) and deejay Andy H. Frustrated by not seeing the music we loved get the exposure it deserved, we decided that there was a gap that needed filling. As the year came to an end a group of musicians, deejays, designers, emcees and producers had come together to cook up the fresh new sound of "Two Syllables", our debut compilation that was released in April 2004, preceded by a split 12" from Homecut Directive (ft Corinne Bailey Rae) and Tommy Evans.

Since then, the label has grown to house numerous artists, including kidkanevil, Tall Black Guy, Souleance, Yosi Horikawa, Ross McHenry, Quiet Dawn and Jon Phonics. The sound of our output has developed as we have as individuals – but the foundation is rooted in Hip Hop, Jazz and Soul.  This is music that's equally at home in the clubs as it is leaking out of your late-night headphones. Like Duke Ellington said - "If it sounds good, it is good".

Aly Gillani (DJ Gilla), Peckham, September 2015

On a slightly related note - thanks to all of you who have paid for music from us over the years. As a small independent label we massively appreciate those brave souls who continue to buy music. Without your continued support we would literally cease to exist. So thanks! Please carry on pushing what we do, it's genuinely appreciated and please come say hi to us if you see any of us at a show. We really believe in what we do and it's gratifying to think that a few of you believe in us too. Keep supporting independent music!


info@firstwordrecords.com / 020 77 323 121

Bookings: For all enquiries contact info@firstwordrecords.com

Distribution: UK & Digital: www.kudosrecords.co.uk • France: http://www.differ-ant.fr/ • International: aly@firstwordrecords.com

Demo Submission:

To submit a demo please email info@firstwordrecords.com with a soundcloud link. Due to the volume of submissions we can't guarantee that we'll reply to all enquiries, but we will make sure we listen to everything we're sent.