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Def Jam

Def Jam Exec Steps Down Causing Island Def Jam To Come To An End?

Posted By on April 1, 2014

Universal Music Group is about to have some serious changes as reports claim Def Jam, Island and Motown Records will be re-organized after Barry Weiss steps down as chairman of the label.

According to reports, the huge change will have numerous key industry executives getting new job titles.

“Effective immediately, Island Def Jam will cease to exist, according to a press release issued by UMG. Def Jam will run as its own unit with longtime executive Steve Bartels at the helm as CEO (he was previously president and COO). Island will continue to run under David Massey but will be adding its own marketing, publicity and A&R departments. Motown will move its base to Los Angeles where it will be headed by Ethiopia Habtemariam, who has been promoted from SVP of Motown Records to president of the label, and run out of the Capitol Music Group.” (The Hollywood Reporter)

Reports also claim Barry Weiss will not be gone for good and will be looking to join a new venture with Universal boss Lucian Grainge.

“Weiss is leaving after Michele Anthony, a former colleague of his at Sony, was named executive vice president of US recorded music — a role that appeared to industry observers to elevate her above Weiss. Universal said that Weiss is stepping down from his job to enter discussions about creating a new joint venture with Universal boss Lucian Grainge.” (NY Post)