Behind the Scene

Nabil Ayers, Sonic Boom Records co-owner, Control Group label guy, the Long Winters drummer

How did you get your start in the music (under)world?

I bought my first record (Kiss Destroyer) when I was 5 years old. Ever since then, I was always obsessed with music and the business side as well. I was the only kid in my elementary school who knew that Kiss and Donna Summer were on the same label and thought that was strange. Put out shitty cassette tapes of my high-school bands, then interned at a label in college, then worked at a record store.

Favorite part of co-owning Sonic Boom?

Working with people I like and who also like what they do. There are a lot of bitter people in the music biz, but there are also still a lot of people who really love music and bands and do it for the right reasons.

Most memorable in-stores?

Sondre Lerche because he had everyone in the store singing along with him. Hillary Hahn because an elderly woman fainted and for a moment I really thought I might go to jail. Andrew WK because he threw a pie in a Sonic Boom employee's face for his birthday. Death Cab for Cutie because the full band played in our original 800-square-foot space.

Top Five records to listen to while . . . 

Working at Sonic Boom: Right now, it's Joanna Newsom Ys because (a) it's an amazing record and (b) I wouldn't be a true record store guy if I said something that was actually available (it's out Nov. 14).

Drinking at a bar: Guns N' Roses Appetite for Destruction.

Drinking at home: Girl Talk Night Ripper.

Working out: tie between Metallica Ride the Lightning and Led Zeppelin Physical Graffiti.

Aja Pecknold

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