Founder, Jett Plastic Recordings
What were you doing at age 14? Jarett Koral was creating his own record label. The Detroit native started Jett Plastic Recordings in 2012 when a local indie band was looking to put out a 7-inch. Koral volunteered and funded the first $2,000 pressing by selling off some of his own record collection. Since then, he's put out LPs by 12 bands, including Macaulay Culkin's the Pizza Underground. Koral – whose mom is label president, since technically he isn't old enough to own his own company – is firmly devoted to the "tangible" over the digital, and his offerings hearken to the glory days of vinyl. He's taken full advantage of the medium through such creative collector's items as a transparent "decoder" record that can be looked through to reveal hidden song lyrics on the album sleeve.
The teenager has grown up steeped in Detroit rock. His uncle owns a local record shop, and one of his favorite musicians is hometown boy Kenny Tudrick. "There are so many great bands here that are virtually ignored in other areas of the country," says Koral. "I'm trying to remedy that." He presses much of his vinyl at Archer Record Pressing in Detroit and dreams of a future in which other old plants can reopen.
That future, he hopes, will also involve more independence for artists. "It'd be great to give bands and musicians the ability to run their own careers without being held down by the beastly behemoth that is the music industry," Koral says.