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Island's Identity

August 08, 1993

I was disappointed to read Bruce Haring's conjectural piece on Motown's since-announced purchase by PolyGram, in which he states that such an arrangement would result in "the kind of dilution of company identity typified by Island Records, a label that has lost much of its cachet and staff since its 1989 sale to PolyGram" (Pop Eye, July 25).

Haring would do well to note that Island Records is enjoying one of the most creative and successful periods in our 30-year history. Led by artists such as U2, Tom Waits and Melissa Etheridge, Island brought home more Grammys in 1992 than all but only two other labels, the mammoth Warner Bros. and Epic.

A new generation of Island artists--PM Dawn, Stereo MCs, the Cranberries, PJ Harvey, Angelique Kidjo, Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy and many others--have thrived during our association with PolyGram.

Island has been able to focus on the signing and development of these talented artists. In fact the label, its staff and its artists have flourished under the arrangement with PolyGram.

Perhaps Haring should do his homework before jumping to such simplistic conclusions.

CHRIS BLACKWELL

Chief Executive Officer

Island Records

New York

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