SST Records is an American independent record label formed in 1978 in Long Beach, California by musician Greg Ginn. The company was formed in 1966 by Ginn at age 12 as Solid State Tuners, a small business through which he sold electronics equipment. Ginn repurposed the company as a record label to release material by his band Black Flag.
Music writer Michael Azerrad wrote, "Ginn took his label from a cash-strapped, cop-hassled store-front operation to easily the most influential and popular underground indie of the Eighties". Along with other independent American labels such as Twin/Tone, Touch and Go Records, Epitaph and Dischord, SST helped to spearhead the nationwide network of underground bands that formed the pre-Nirvana indie-rock scene. These labels presided over the shift from the hardcore punk that then dominated the American underground scene to the more diverse styles of alternative rock that were emerging. SST initially focused on releasing material by hardcore punk groups from Southern California. As many of the bands on the label sought to expand beyond the limitations of the hardcore genre, SST released many key albums that were instrumental in the development of American alternative rock, including releases by the Minutemen, Hüsker Dü, the Meat Puppets, Soundgarden, Sonic Youth, and Dinosaur Jr. After a peak release schedule in the late 1980s, SST began venturing into jazz releases. SST is now based in Taylor, Texas. Sonic Youth, Soundgarden, Dinosaur Jr., and the Meat Puppets have reclaimed the rights to their respective SST material after leaving the label.