This is a topic I see a lot. Anybody with a serious passion for music has found themselves thinking at one point or another, "I should start a label."
99% of the time it never happens (let alone attempted) but it may be easier than you think to start and build your own record label. I'm going to break it down in steps, How To Start Your Own Record Label With $10.
1.) Find your talent: You're going to have to be picky, and it's going to be tough. With no credibility yet, and nothing to guarantee, you're going to have to find very low-level acts with nothing to lose; like a local act with a small (if any) fanbase.
2.) Record Some Music: Again, this is going to be tricky. Normally a band would need to go into a professional recording studio in order to get a good recording. Since you have no money to put into this kind of recording, you're going to have to deal with a less-than-professional recording. A good option may be to record each instrument separately, upload into a free program like Audacity, and piece the tracks together into a song. Some things like guitar, bass, and keyboards can be plugged directly into the computer to avoid picking up other sounds. Other things like drums and microphones will have to record live, so do your best to isolate the noise.
3.) Print Your Albums: Here's where that $10 will come in. What for you ask? The blank CD's. After you have mixed and mastered your music, it's time to burn some CD's! For $10, you can get about 10 CD's from Wal-Mart. When they're all burned and ready, make sure you write info for the band like Name, Album, website or Facebook, etc. You want the people who like the music to come back.
4.) Market And Promote: To keep marketing and promotion free, you're going to need some creativity. Obviously the best thing to do is book the bands/artists lots of shows. A great website that can help you book shows is www.indieonthemove.com You should always have CD's at shows. Also utilize Facebook, Twitter, word of mouth, and any other free online resource to spread the word that the album is out. You can sell digitally online with sites like www.bandcamp.com Selling the music actually classifies as distribution.
5.) Distribution: I already mentioned two methods of getting the music out and sold. Definitely focus on free digital outlets, but don't leave out the physical copies. Go to local stores and try to get a counter display. If you want to sell each CD for $5, tell them they will get $1 off every sale. Send the artists out to sell on the street. All that matters is the music is sold.
So there you go, pretty much. Take the music and sell it. Simple as that. Record labels.