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ECC Records: Turning musical inspiration into a global record label

You would be hard pushed to pick up a Lush product that hadn’t been inspired in some part by music.

Some are named after songs, others have been developed in labs where music is a constant companion as the inventors dream up new ideas. Each Lush shop has its own sound, as the teams who work there choose which songs accompany their day. Our factories are filled with music as well as bubbles. You could say that music is one of our essential ingredients.

Interacting and working alongside musicians rather than just listening to them started with our spa treatments. Music was to play an important role and become a part of the therapy, creating the perfect soundtrack to our massages, scrubs and soaks.

We now have ten treatments, all with bespoke soundtracks created by the ever expanding community of musicians who have become part of the Lush family. Shepherded into our labs by Lush musician Simon Emmerson, many arrive with a bit of a confused questioning smile, “A soap company…? And musicians?” they ask politely, but once they are immersed in the development of a new spa treatment, everything seems to click into place, and wonderful, breathtaking symphonies are produced that work in harmony with our spa therapists’ movements.

To experience a magical moment of anticipation when fingertips meet instruments or a delicious shiver down the back of your neck as notes are sung as pure as a lark in the dawn, is a heady joy. It’s just too compelling not to want to walk and work alongside them.

This is why Lush decided to start a record label. The Imagined Village, the band that had entranced company co founder Mark, had a new album to release, and no one to release it. Many of the members had worked on the Synaesthesia composition and we loved each of their contributions. ECC Records was formed.

Our love affair with musicians extends to getting them into the labs to join us. Sheema Mukherjee, “the Original Sitar girl”, first joined us to play sitar on Synaesthesia, and was asked to perform with her band at Lushfest 2012. It was here that she told the crowd the story of the seductive Sikkim Girls and played us the song that they had inspired her to write. We invited her into the lab to create a perfume of the same name that would be just as beguiling. You can see Sikkim Girls on the shelves of our Lush shops around the world, from song to scent in the strum of a sitar.

We launched Sheema’s album on ECC100 - our vinyl record label dedicated to releasing amazing albums that inspire you to listen to them in their entirety, and let the music take you on a complete journey. No skipping tracks or throwaway downloads allowed!

Five years on, and our latest vinyl release The Self Preservation Society can be found displayed proudly in all UK Lush shops and in our music holding stores across Europe. This joyous three-disc collection is a 34-track covers album dedicated to the  finest progressive, folk and psychedelic moments of the 60s and 70s. All our beloved Lush musicians are featured, including Simon Emmerson, Jackie Oates, Barney Morse-Brown, Eliza Carthy, Ben Murray, Marry Waterson, Rosie Doonan, The Imagined Village, Afro Celt Sound System as well as some new faces Teddy Thompson, Kami Thompson, Dream Themes and Honeyfeet to name a few of the myriad excellent contributors.

Comments (2)


about 5 years ago

Right when I think I can't love Lush any more, I find a new reason to. After reading this, I must buy one of the spa albums to use at home.
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