Film, Record Labels — February 20, 2013 at 9:07 am

Wax Trax! Records documentary to chronicle ‘rise and fall’ of legendary record label

Wax Trax! Records

Fans still waiting for the long-promised DVD of 2011’s Wax Trax! Records Retrospectacle: 33⅓ Year Anniversary concert got good and bad news this week: While the concert film still isn’t finished, a new documentary is in the works that promises to chronicle the “rise and fall of Wax Trax! Records” via artist and employee interviews, home video clips and never-before-seen footage from the Wax Trax! vault.

Julia Nash, daughter of late Wax Trax! co-founder Jim Nash, revealed plans for the documentary on her site, noting that it will be put together by the team behind the 2009 documentary “You Weren’t There: A History of Chicago Punk 1977-1984.”

The Wax Trax! film, Nash writes, will tell the story of her father and co-founder Dannie Flesher, who died in 2010, and “their road from young music obsessed gay hillbillies to the tastemakers who gave a voice to many of us that just didn’t quite fit in.”

After explaining that the Retrospectacle is still in the works, Nash writes:

“There IS one very positive thing that has come out of waiting. We have taken this ‘down time’ to work on a detailed look at the origins of the store & label, as well as my Dad, Dannie and their road from young music obsessed gay hillbillies, to the taste makers who gave a voice to many of us that just didn’t quite fit in. It will also cover the bankruptcy as well as what led to the demise. This will be family, employee, and artist interviews, as well as home video footage and never before seen images from the Wax Trax! vault. This is very different from the concert event project. With this, we are much more active and hands on. We are very excited to tell the personal story of my Dad & Dannie as well as the rise and fall of Wax Trax! Records. So far,the interviews have been fantastic!”

In the coming months, Julia Nash writes, the filmmakers will begin soliciting fans for any personal footage or items from the days of the Wax Trax! store in Chicago — which Nash and Flesher opened in 1978 after selling their original Wax Trax shop in Denver — and the label they spun off, which was home to industrial acts such as Ministry, Front 242, Revolting Cocks, Frontline Assembly and My Life With the Thrill Kill Kult.





  1. this will be great. can’t wait.

  2. Yes!!! Outside of the boxset there has been little to document this great label/era.

  3. Sound Opinions did an interview with Chris Connelly and Paul Barker around the time of the 33 and 1/3 concerts. It’s great to hear the two of them reminisce about Wax Trax! and all the insanity surrounding it.
    The website below will have the show; it’s show #293 from 7.0811

  4. Wax Trax released most of the 12″ tunes of my teenage years. Should be a cool view!

  5. Just finished up Sound City. The first question I had was, “Where is a Wax Trax documentary”. Please make this happen!

  6. Awesome news, and the shop at just added three Laibach shirts to the shop. Their shop is starting to look a lot like the mail order inserts from the late ’80s. Erm, the Wax Trax logo used for this article is a bit wretched. I have a higher quality logo if you want to replace it..Plus it doesn’t have “New York” on it, which is a bit misleading (I think that’s a post-TVT buyout logo).

  7. Michael Pinckney

    WaxTrax was a movement as powerful and meaningful as The emergence of DefJam,SUBpop,4AD all put together. All four made their mark, but there is something unique about WaxTrax in the sense that you started to see new hybrids in the “post-modern” world, taking a little from the club, a little from metal, a touch of the hip hop and rap aesthetic, running it through whatever can make it sound gritty, when in doubt distort it.

  8. This is soooOoooo Awesome….I can’t wait for the release….

    I’ll never forget Jim Nash…He gave me tickets to see Bauhaus at Space Place for pushing his Mail order catalog press date up on our schedule as we used to print these record mail order catalogs at ImPress in Elk Grove!~

    Best Punk Rock Show EVER!!!!

  9. Yes, logo is misleading. New York shouldn’t even be on it. UNLESS it’s under Chicago..

  10. Greylin High

    Lose the NY logo dude, extremely tacky.

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