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DMP

Can Anyone Sort Out For Me Who Owns What?

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Articles about Universal and Vivendi have my head spinning!  Are we down to 2 (or 3) companies owning all the labels?  I was able to follow this for awhile (the first deal I remember was that insurance company buying Liberty, which had absorbed Blue Note and Pacific Jazz; and, decades later, Columbia and RCA  becoming one, easy enough to follow; and Polygram and Fantasy absorbing a lot of labels) , but I’ve lost track. Anyone take a crack at explaining where we stand?

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Posted (edited)

Universal has MCA, EMI, Capitol, and all that fell under them.

BMG has RCA and Columbia, and all that fell under them.

Polygram may or may not be a part of Universal now.

Not sure who owns WEA or Atlantic/Atco.

Edited by Teasing the Korean

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10 minutes ago, Teasing the Korean said:

Polygram may or may not be a part of Universal now.

Polygram was absorbed by Universal in 1998: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PolyGram

10 minutes ago, Teasing the Korean said:

Not sure who owns WEA or Atlantic/Atco.

Warner Music Group owns WEA, Atlantic/Atco, etc., as well as some labels that Universal was forced to sell (Roulette, EMI Classical).  If you have a couple of hours, you can read about it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warner_Music_Group

14 minutes ago, Teasing the Korean said:

Universal has MCA, EMI, Capitol, and all that fell under them.

Someone should do a flow chart of labels and their changing corporate owners over the years.

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It's my understanding that Universal does own Polygram. So there's a big 3, it seems, Universal, BMG, and Warner, correct?

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and Nessa.

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21 minutes ago, mjzee said:

Polygram was absorbed by Universal in 1998: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PolyGram

Warner Music Group owns WEA, Atlantic/Atco, etc., as well as some labels that Universal was forced to sell (Roulette, EMI Classical).  If you have a couple of hours, you can read about it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warner_Music_Group

Someone should do a flow chart of labels and their changing corporate owners over the years.

The MCA branch was huge - Decca, ABC Paramount, Kapp, zillions of others.  

3 minutes ago, JSngry said:

and Nessa.

And Andy Williams owns Cadence.

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11 minutes ago, Teasing the Korean said:

And Andy Williams owns Cadence.

All of it, or just his stuff?

That would/should mean that he owns the Candid catalog? Or did Bleyer sell that off before, seems like Alan Bates got in that mix when CD time came?

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Big 3 = entertainment cartel. Wonderful. 

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Posted (edited)

11 minutes ago, JSngry said:

All of it, or just his stuff?

That would/should mean that he owns the Candid catalog? Or did Bleyer sell that off before, seems like Alan Bates got in that mix when CD time came?

I heard all of it, which would include Kenyon Hopkins' Rooms if true.  I know he owned the Everlys.

Edited by Teasing the Korean

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yeah, that label is often overlloked in terms of hitmakers. The Chordettes!

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And what’s the story with Concord? How did they become a factor? A car dealer starts a label to apparently record music of a certain style, and now they’re all over the place.

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1 minute ago, DMP said:

And what’s the story with Concord? How did they become a factor? A car dealer starts a label to apparently record music of a certain style, and now they’re all over the place.

A music lover starts a label, can't handle the business aspects, and hands it over to professionals, for better or worse.  Has happened since the beginning of the record industry.

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Carl Jefferson actually did pretty well, got the product out there, get it into the hands of the radios & press people who were disposed towards his product, they did really well. Not sure why he sold (or whatever he did to/with it) to Norman Lear, but my guess would be a combination of getting out while it was still fun and just getting old and wanting to retire. There was a certain type of jazz fan who loived for that label, just as some did for Blue Note or any other "cult" label.

I can tell you, there was no shortage of Concord records in the stores and on the radios. That label was built up and out very well, as an indie. And then, hey, make the money, take the money. And then run!

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18 minutes ago, DMP said:

And what’s the story with Concord? How did they become a factor? A car dealer starts a label to apparently record music of a certain style, and now they’re all over the place.

Didn’t that spin off from Carl Jefferson’s Summer Jazz Parties, when he used to invite pretty well everyone in US Mainstream jazz? That label got a lot of profile (relatively speaking - for jazz that is) from the mid 70s through the 80s.

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1 hour ago, felser said:

It's my understanding that Universal does own Polygram. So there's a big 3, it seems, Universal, BMG, and Warner, correct?

Correct.  And of the three, I'd say Universal is by far the largest and most powerful.

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I think Concord Records did quite well for themselves while Carl Jefferson was alive.  It was after his passing that things went the way they did.  He sold the label just a year before he died. 

It's ridiculous to call the company which exists today "Concord Records".  According to wikipedia, "On March 25, 2013, Wood Creek Capital Management, (now Barings LLC, an affiliate of MassMutual Financial Group), purchased Concord Music Group".  Perhaps there is an actual jazz fan to be found somewhere in the decision-making management level at Mass Capital Mutual Financial Management Group LLC, but it's unlikely.

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The names confuse the issue:  e.g. I think Warner's Music has no connection to Warner Bros. films and Universal has none to Universal films. 

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3 hours ago, JSngry said:

and Nessa.

And Resonance!

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2 hours ago, JSngry said:

yeah, that label is often overlloked in terms of hitmakers. The Chordettes!

All I Have to Do Is Dream - Wikipedia

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Perhaps my question is related to label distribution contracts rather than ownership, but here is what I see.

Carol King - Ode (ABC?   A&M?)
The Lovin' Spoonful - Kama Sutra (MGM?)
Dean Martin - Rreprise (Warner)

Sony is currently offering these three in their five-pack Original Album Classics series.

So how did Sony get the rights to this music?

*****

By the way, when you guys refer to BMG above, it should be Sony.

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56 minutes ago, GA Russell said:

Carol King - Ode (ABC?   A&M?)
The Lovin' Spoonful - Kama Sutra (MGM?)
Dean Martin - Rreprise (Warner)

Sony is currently offering these three in their five-pack Original Album Classics series.

So how did Sony get the rights to this music?

Ode was owned by Lou Adler.  Per Wikipedia:

It was distributed by CBS's Epic Records except between 1970 and 1976, when the label was distributed by A&M Records. The original incarnation was closed in 1978 and CBS took over most of catalog, often with Epic logos replacing Ode logos on reissues.

Adler reactivated the label several times, including another short run with A&M in 1989. It was disbanded when A&M was sold to PolyGram in late 1989.

Ode is now part of Sony Music Entertainment (the successor to CBS), excluding:

  • Cheech & Chong catalogue is controlled by Warner Music Group. After Cheech & Chong switched to Warner Bros. Records in 1978, they took also its past catalog to their new home label. Depending on reissue, they can have "Warner Bros. Records Inc.", "Warner Records Inc." or "Ode Records" printed as copyright owner. It is believed that Lou Adler still owns copyrights for its Ode releases.
  • Soundtrack to The Rocky Horror Picture Show and the London Symphony Orchestra's version of Tommy are still owned by Lou Adler, with reissues distributed under license to third party oldies labels like RhinoCastle Communications and more recently, The Orchard, another subsidiary of Sony Music.

Re Kama Sutra, again per Wikipedia:

Kama Sutra Records was started in 1964 by Arthur "Artie" Ripp, Hy Mizrahi and Phil Steinberg as Kama Sutra Productions, a production house. The "Kama Sutra" is an ancient Sanskrit text.[1]

In 1965, the company was joined by Art Kass and the record label itself was started. A distribution deal with MGM Records was later signed, which lasted from 1965 until 1969. From 1969 onward, distribution was then handled by co-owned Buddah Records.

The record company ceased in mid-1976 but restarted in 1981 as Sutra Records. Under this moniker, Kass marketed and distributed Fever RecordsBlue Dog Records, Baila Records, Becket Records, and signed and recorded the Cover Girlsthe Fat BoysVictor Willis, and many more before the company filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in 1993. The 1965-1976 Kama Sutra catalogue is now owned by Sony Music Entertainment and managed by Legacy Recordings. The 1981–1993 Sutra catalogue is controlled by Unidisc Music.

Re Dean Martin: Per allmusic.com, Dean owned his masters.  Regarding his recordings being reissued on Sony, see: http://www.deanmartin.com/news/dean-martins-reprise-records-catalog-comes-legacy-recordings/

 

1 hour ago, GA Russell said:

By the way, when you guys refer to BMG above, it should be Sony.

Interestingly, there is still a BMG (Bertelsmann Music Group) Rights Management company.  The gory details can be found here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bertelsmann_Music_Group  So for example, Amazon shows the label for Van Morrison's latest release (yes, the loved-on-this-board "Latest Record Project Volume 1") as "BMG Rights Management (UK) Ltd."

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Thanks for all that, Michael!

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