UNIVERSAL REPUBLIC RECORDS AND GROUNDBREAKING COUNTRY INDEPENDENT BIG MACHINE RECORDS LAUNCH NEW LABEL: REPUBLIC NASHVILLE
New York, NY, June 5, 2009– Monte Lipman, President and CEO of Universal Republic and Scott Borchetta, President and CEO of Big Machine Records, LLC proudly announced today the formation of a new label partnership – Republic Nashville, which will be based in Nashville. The imprint will be headquartered on Music Row and utilize the combined resources of Big Machine Records and Universal Republic Records.
Big Machine and Universal Republic first joined forces in 2007 to propel country Superstar Taylor Swift to Top 40 radio and beyond, with Taylor becoming the best-selling all-genre artist in 2008.
Lipman and Borchetta also announced former Capitol Records Promotion executive Jimmy Harnen has been appointed President of Republic Nashville. Mr. Harnen worked with Borchetta in a previous capacity at DreamWorks Nashville.
Monte Lipman commented: “Scott Borchetta and his great team at Big Machine and the Valory Music Co. continue to tower over the country music landscape with a tireless commitment to their artists and a visionary approach to discovering new talent that has become the benchmark of Nashville. We’re thrilled to expand our relationship with them, and welcome Jimmy Harnen as he steps into this key role at a crucial juncture in our two companies’ unique history together.”
“Monte and I have been searching for a way to expand our business relationship and I believe we have found the perfect compliment in the creation of Republic Nashville,” stated Borchetta. “This venture is an opportunity to utilize the best of our Nashville resources and the best of Monte’s New York resources to create a powerhouse entertainment company. It also affords me the opportunity to bring Jimmy Harnen into the family in a presidential role. Jimmy’s tireless ambition, leadership, trend-spotting, A&R tastes and shared vision for this cutting-edge new company is going to prove to be very successful and a helluva lot of fun.”
“Reuniting with Scott is fantastic in so many ways,” stated Jimmy Harnen. “As a friend and a colleague, it’s been a thrill to see him and his incredible team achieve such great success these past few years. I relish the opportunity to join the environment he has created that epitomizes the cutting edge of Nashville and the entire music scene. I’m also looking forward to working with Monte Lipman, one of the most respected executives in our entire business, as we combine our resources to make Republic Nashville a productive and unique success story.”
Previously, Harnen was Senior Vice President of Promotion for Capitol Records, Nashville. In 2006 he was Vice-President of Promotion for the company. From 2000 to 2003 Mr. Harnen was Co-National Director of Promotion for DreamWorks Records in Nashville, working closely with Mr. Borchetta, who was a DreamWorks executive at the time.
Republic Nashville’s inaugural roster will include honky tonkin’ singer/songwriter Sunny Sweeney and new country duo Fast Ryde, among other artists. A major staff announcement regarding the new label will be forthcoming.
About Big Machine Scott Borchetta founded independent label Big Machine Records in September 2005 and serves as its President/CEO. In its first year Big Machine scored its first #1 single (Jack Ingram’s “Wherever You Are”), placed five singles in the Country Top 30, received a nomination for Record Label of the Year, and placed all three of the label’s three new artist releases in the Top 10 Most-Played New Artists of 2006 (as monitored by Mediabase and reported by USA Today and Country Aircheck). Big Machine’s signature artist Taylor Swift was the best-selling all-genre artist of 2008, selling over 7 million records to-date. Taylor’s Fearless, the Academy of Country Music’s Album of the Year, has spent more weeks at #1 atop the Billboard Top Album chart than any other album this decade with an astounding 11 weeks at #1. Big Machine’s unique partnership with Universal Republic was forged in October of 2007. This relationship re-wrote the record books when Taylor’s worldwide smash single “Love Story” became the first ever Country crossover single to hit #1 on the Billboard and USA Today Top 40 airplay charts.
Big Machine Records, together with sister label The Valory Music Co., was the #1 Nielsen Soundscan Country Label Group for 2008 decorating it as the highest-selling record label group on Music Row. The label group’s current artist roster includes Taylor Swift, Reba McEntire, Jewel, Trisha Yearwood, Jack Ingram, Jimmy Wayne, Justin Moore and Kate & Kacey. In 2007, Big Machine also became the exclusive radio-marketing partner for Garth Brooks. Big Machine made history with Brooks’ single “More Than a Memory,” when it became the first single in history to debut at #1 on the Billboard Country Singles Chart.
In less than 3 years, Big Machine Records artists have received 4 CMT Music Awards, 4 Academy of Country Music Awards, 1 Country Music Association Award, an American Music Award and Teen Choice Award as well as 5 GRAMMY Nominations and 2 People’s Choice Award Nominations.
About Universal Republic Records
Universal Republic Records is a division of Universal Music Group, the world’s largest music company, with wholly owned record operations or licensees in 77 countries. One of several labels that comprise Universal Motown Republic Group, Republic Records was formed in 1995 by President, CEO of the label, Monte Lipman, and his brother, Co-President & COO of Universal Republic, Avery Lipman. Today, the label is responsible for numerous breakthrough and mainstream chart topping artists, including a diverse array of groundbreaking imprints and ventures encompassing new and established platinum and multi-platinum acts such Amy Winehouse, Colbie Caillat, Mika, Tori Amos, Hinder, 3 Doors Down, Anberlin, Godsmack, Jack Johnson, Damian Marley, Chamillionaire, Lil Jon, and others.