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July 12, 1997 | Chuck Philips
In a move that could foreshadow an overhaul of New York-based PolyGram Music Group, Island Records dismissed more than a dozen employees this week. The label, which releases music by such acts as U2 and the Cranberries, is not the only PolyGram company suffering from a dry spell lately. Motown sales are flat, and sales are sluggish at Def Jam and A&M--although its Mercury Records is on a roll. The Island firings follow a round of staff cuts at competitors Warner Bros., EMI, Geffen and MCA.
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February 26, 2014
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BUSINESS
July 28, 1989 | WILLIAM K. KNOEDELSEDER Jr., Times Staff Writer
Island Records, the small, independently owned company that records the Irish rock group U2, is being acquired by Polygram Records for about $300 million, The Times has learned. Island founder Chris Blackwell said through a spokesman Thursday that "very positive talks" were going on, but knowledgeable sources said the deal is basically done and will be formally announced next week.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 3, 2013 | By August Brown
Junior Murvin had one of the greatest reggae singles ever. " Police & Thieves " is a genre staple and one of reggae's most perpetually covered tracks. The singer died Monday in Jamaica, and his song will be the centerpiece of his legacy. Murvin's age has been listed as 64 and 67 in varying reports . The singer had recently been hospitalized for diabetes and blood pressure-related illnesses, but a cause of death was not immediately known. PHOTOS: Notable deaths of 2013 Murvin was discovered by legendary producer Lee "Scratch" Perry after performing in lounges in Portland parish, east of the capital of Kingston.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 17, 1997 | JERRY CROWE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The Insane Clown Posse, the controversial Detroit rap duo whose album was recalled from stores last month by Disney-owned Hollywood Records because of "inappropriate" lyrics, has found a new home at Island Records. Island officials said Wednesday that they hope to release an expanded version of the record, "The Great Milenko," as early as Aug. 12.
BUSINESS
October 24, 1997 | CHUCK PHILIPS
Island Group Chairman Chris Blackwell abruptly resigned Thursday from the board of directors of PolyGram, following a heated dispute with PolyGram chief Alain Levy regarding the future of Island's film and music divisions. Blackwell's sudden departure from the board raises questions about what role the respected music industry veteran will play in the future of New York-based Island Records, which Philips-owned PolyGram purchased from him eight years ago for $300 million.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 8, 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.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 6, 1991 | ALEENE MacMINN, Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press
N.W.A Banned in Britain: Some 5,000 copies of a new album by the controversial rap group N.W.A have been seized from a warehouse outside London under the Obscene Publications Act, Scotland Yard said Wednesday. A spokesman for Island Records, which released the album "Niggaz4life" in record stores Monday, said the company had been warned last week the seizure would take place. "A decision to release the record was taken," said spokesman Neil Storey.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 23, 2013 | By Dawn C. Chmielewski
Music entrepreneurs Russell Simmons and Steve Rifkind, together with friend and veteran film and TV producer Brian Robbins, have partnered with Universal Music Group to launch All Def Music, a label created expressly to sign, develop and promote YouTube artists. All Def Music label will seek to identify and cultivate music talent bubbling up on YouTube, in much the same way Rifkind and Simmons once hit the streets in pursuit of promising hip-hop acts for their respective labels, Loud Records and Def Jam. "How [Russell]
SPORTS
October 22, 2009 | Associated Press
John Tavares scored in the shootout to give the New York Islanders their first victory of the season, a 4-3 win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Wednesday night. Jeff Tambellini and Frans Nielsen also scored in the shootout to help the Islanders (1-3-3) avoid their worst start in franchise history. Andy Sutton, Tim Jackman and Matt Moulson scored in regulation for New York. The Hurricanes (2-4-2) dropped to 0-3-1 on the road. -- associated press
ENTERTAINMENT
August 13, 2008 | Robert Hilburn, Special to The Times
Like the Beatles, Garth Brooks and so many other mega-sellers before, the members of U2 flunked several auditions before a record company was willing to sign them. In fact, the band's potential was once viewed as so limited that CBS in England, the label that finally took a chance on the group, reconsidered and dropped it after releasing just two U2 singles.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 16, 2005 | Steve Hochman, Special to The Times
BRUNO GUEZ was one of the rising stars of the music business in the last half of the '90s. Mentored by Island Records founder Chris Blackwell, he earned a reputation as a sharp talent-spotter, creative label executive and enthusiastic leader of the burgeoning global electronica and world fusion scenes via his Island-distributed Quango Records label.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 25, 2004 | Susan Carpenter, Times Staff Writer
It's rare for a backup singer to steal the show from the headliner, but Martina Topley-Bird came close a decade ago when she made her hoarse, Cockney-accented debut on Tricky's trip-hop masterpiece "Maxinquaye."
BUSINESS
April 24, 2004 | Jeff Leeds
Universal Music Group is expected to name Steve Bartels president of its Island Records unit, sources said. Bartels, formerly head of promotion at rival Bertelsmann's Arista Records label, will report to his onetime boss, Antonio "L.A." Reid. The move comes amid a rapid-fire shuffle in the top jobs at the music labels. Reid took the reins at Universal's Island Def Jam complex just weeks after being fired from his job as chief executive of Arista.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 27, 1987 | Rick Sherwood
River Phoenix, recording star? His agent's denying any knowledge of it (and said she couldn't locate his star), but the teen-age lead of "Stand by Me" supposedly has a verbal agreement with Island Records calling for a future on vinyl. The rising Phoenix stars in Island Pics' upcoming "Jimmy Reardon" (plus "Little Nikita" from Columbia and "Running on Empty" for Lorimar).
BUSINESS
January 23, 1998 | CHUCK PHILIPS
PolyGram installed former EMI Records executive Davitt Sigerson on Thursday as chairman and Johnny Barbis, a PolyGram executive, as president of its Island Records USA division. The moves follow the departure last year of Island founder Chris Blackwell, who was ousted after publicly criticizing PolyGram Chairman Alain Levy. Music industry veteran Richard Griffiths has been named chairman of Bertelsmann Music Group's newly restructured European sector.
BUSINESS
November 4, 1997 | CHUCK PHILIPS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Less than a week after publicly criticizing the chairman of PolyGram, music entrepreneur Chris Blackwell is leaving the corporation, sources said. PolyGram, which purchased Blackwell's Island Records label eight years ago for $300 million, is ousting the well-known music veteran after an interview published Wednesday in The Times in which he questioned the ability of creative enterprises to operate within the Dutch conglomerate, sources said.
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