Universal Republic Records, a division of Universal Music Group (UMG), further expands its creative team this week by inking a label deal with renowned music executive Tom Whalley's Seven Four Ent. The announcement was made today by Barry Weiss, Chairman & CEO of Island Def Jam Music Group & Universal Republic, Monte Lipman, President & CEO of Universal Republic, and Mr. Whalley.
"Tom is a fearless creative executive, respected industry-wide for his A&R instincts and great artistry," stated Mr. Weiss. "He has been responsible for the breakout success of many of the world's most exciting, original artists and we are delighted to be partnering with him on the launch of Seven Four Ent."
"Tom has always been a fierce competitor who constantly operates outside the traditional boundaries," commented Mr. Lipman. "His innovative approach towards discovering, signing, and marketing new artists has always been inspiring. I'm thrilled that he's joining forces with Universal Republic."
"As we continue to expand opportunities for new artists and their music, Tom and his label are a natural fit," said Lucian Grainge, Chairman & CEO of Universal Music Group. "His renowned ability to spot new talent and work in true partnership with artists complements the creative vision that Barry, Monte and I share for our East Coast company."
"This is a great time for artists and music fans and I am excited to be part of it," added Mr. Whalley. "I want to continue my tradition of signing independent minded artists and building their careers while using Universal's ability to deliver music to everyone everywhere. Lucian, Barry and Monte's commitment to me on my new venture gives me the platform to continue to nurture artists' careers."
Best known for his extensive A&R and artist development experience and proven track record of discovering hit artists, Mr. Whalley began his career in the Warner Bros. Records mailroom before working his way into the label's A&R department. At Warner Bros., Whalley had early success with '80's superstars Modern English and The Cure. He later joined Capitol Records as Head of A&R, where he worked with many of the label's most important acts including Bonnie Raitt, Poison, Crowded House, the Beastie Boys, and MC Hammer. After Capitol, Mr. Whalley helped launch Interscope Records, eventually serving as President of the label. During his tenure at Interscope, Mr. Whalley signed such seminal artists as Tupac Shakur, Nine Inch Nails, Wallflowers, Limp Bizkit, Four Non Blondes, Helmet, Primus, and Smash Mouth. In 2001, he returned to Warner Bros. Records as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, where he signed a slew of chart-topping artists including Michael Bublé, The White Stripes, Muse, My Chemical Romance, Avenged Sevenfold, Big & Rich, Jason Derulo and Damien Rice, among many others. Mr. Whalley's innovative integration of technology into marketing and promotion ignited the careers of Josh Groban and Linkin Park around the world and bolstered the careers of Madonna, Neil Young, Eric Clapton, Fleetwood Mac, and Tom Petty. His commitment to artist development ensured massive worldwide success for international stars Metallica, Green Day, Red Hot Chili Peppers, R.E.M., Seal, Linkin Park, Josh Groban, Enya, and Faith Hill.