Rhythmic pop duo PANDA$ was formed in New York in 2016 when longtime friends Manny and Landa witnessed the wisdom of collaboration. Manny came to the partnership as an industry veteran, a fulfilled Warner deal already to his name, while Landa brought production credits. The pair worked casually yet highly focused as they brainstormed over the past 18 months in pursuit of nothing more than authentic expression. Neither management nor a label deal were the objectives, but nonetheless both were won. Perhaps that’s what comes of work with the sole aim of artistic gratification.
“About a year and a half ago, I got out of my deal with Warner,” Manny recalls. “Me and my homeboy [Landa] started to record music just for fun. It was literally about what we were feeling right then. No censorship, no anything. We just wanted to get in a room and write music that we loved. That’s all we did, 12 hours a day.”
A number of songs resulted, not the least of which was the single “PARI$,” which features Toronto rapper Jute$. “Some friends came by, listened to our music and said, ‘Yo, this is dope,’” Manny continues. Fortunately, those friends had connections and the relationship soon morphed into one of manager-client. “They showed [our music] to some labels and two weeks later we were in the offices of Capitol/Virgin. It’s quite hilarious because in my last deal I tried so long to make it happen. It didn’t. In this one, we didn’t try at all. We just kept it real and ended up in this great situation.”
Currently, the pair are recording videos for a number of songs. The ultimate aim is to have them tell a cohesive story, collectively. “PARI$” dropped in November 2017 and to date has earned well over a million Spotify listens. The follow-up, “H.O.V.,” was released in mid-January. The duo’s full-length record is expected later this year or perhaps early next. The modus operandi is to record and release a string of singles. Interestingly, the well-received video for “PARI$” was shot almost entirely on the pair’s iPhones.
Date Signed: Fall 2017
Label: Virgin Records
Band Members: Manny and Landa
Type of Music: Rhythmic Pop
Management: J. Hill - firstname.lastname@example.org
Legal: Damien Granderson - Davis Shapiro Lewit Grabel Leven Granderson & Blake, LLP, email@example.com
A&R: David Wolter