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Folk styles tend to be conservative and one doesn't have to move the earth in order to express oneself within a tradition. A little personal innovation goes a long way in this music and one needn't go overboard in the direction of technical virtuosity, self-consciously weird harmonic effects, or jazz-inspired no-holds-barred improvisations on the theme... - Art Rosenbaum, Old-Time Mountain Banjo

Author Topic: Concord Music Group Acquires Rounder Records  (Read 1485 times)

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Offline Bunker Hill

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Concord Music Group Acquires Rounder Records
« on: April 14, 2010, 09:59:18 AM »
I pass on the following press release without comment due to a severely bitten tongue  >:D
=====================================
CONCORD MUSIC GROUP ACQUIRES CELEBRATED
AMERICAN ROOTS LABEL ROUNDER RECORDS

Acquisition Firmly Establishes the Combined Entity as the
World?s Preeminent Independent Music Company
Los Angeles, CA - April 14th, 2010 - The Concord Music Group today
announced the acquisition of storied Massachusetts-based independent
music label Rounder Records.  Rounder, celebrating its 40th year as the
world?s leading American roots music label, is a major force in a broad
range of musical genres including bluegrass, Americana,
singer-songwriter, Cajun & Zydeco and children?s music. Rounder
possesses an extraordinary recorded catalog  and current artist roster
including bluegrass superstar Alison Krauss, singer-songwriter Mary
Chapin Carpenter, banjo virtuoso B?la Fleck, actor/musician Steve
Martin, jazz singer Madeleine Peyroux, the iconic Robert Plant, notable
children?s artist/activist Raffi and country legend Willie Nelson, to
name just a few.  The acquisition of Rounder and its essential
collection of over 3,000 masters combined with Concord Music Group?s
rich catalog of more than 10,000 master recordings strengthens
Concord?s status as one of the world?s most significant independent
record companies, with a leadership position in multiple genres.
Rounder?s creative and marketing functions will continue to be based in
Boston and its owners and founders Ken Irwin, Bill Nowlin and Marian
Leighton Levy will remain active with the company in a creative and
advisory capacity.  The company?s senior management will also remain in
place: John Virant will continue as the President of Rounder; Sheri
Sands will stay on as General Manager.  Operating synergies will be
achieved by combining the sales, administrative and support functions
of the two companies.

Rounder, founded in 1970 by Cambridge folkies, Irwin, Nowlin, and
Leighton Levy, has been at the center of nearly all of the American
roots revivals that have reshaped the music world in the last 40
years.  The self-titled 1975 record by J.D. Crowe and the New South
(featuring future stars Ricky Skaggs, Tony Rice and Jerry Douglas)
revitalized bluegrass and inspired such modern superstars as Rounder?s
own Alison Krauss, who is the most decorated female artist in the
history of the Grammy? Awards and has also sold over eight million
albums and DVDs.   Her collaboration with Led Zeppelin front-man Robert
Plant on the album Raising Sand emerged as one of 2007?s major critical
and word-of-mouth sales success stories. The album was RIAA certified
platinum in early 2008 and won five Grammy? Awards including Album and
Record of the Year in 2009.  An unequaled leader in the preservation
and re-release of precious historic recordings, Rounder has brought the
music of Jelly Roll Morton, Woody Guthrie, Lead Belly, the Carter
Family, Jimmie Rodgers and Mississippi John Hurt back to vibrant life. 
In addition, their dazzling work on the epic anthologies from the
Library of Congress and the Alan Lomax Collection has been universally
respected and admired.

Glen Barros, President and CEO of the Concord Music Group, said, ?The
combination of Concord and Rounder makes so much sense on a creative,
strategic and cultural level.  With the addition of Rounder, Concord is
gaining a magnificent catalog of recordings, the opportunity to work
with more of the world?s most amazing artists and a company filled with
some great people.  Plus, Rounder?s uncompromising commitment to
authenticity and intense independent spirit is perfectly in line with
everything that Concord is about.?

Norman Lear, Concord Music Group Chairman and co-owner added, ?We
couldn?t be more honored to join together with Rounder in our
collective mission to deliver great, timeless music.? 

Marian Leighton Levy, co-Rounder Founder, concurs and adds, ?For us,
it?s always been about the music. We have long been aware of Concord?s
commitment to great catalogue labels within a vibrant and contemporary
independent context, and feel the Concord Records Group provides not
only a great home for our music and artists, but also a stronger and
more secure position going forward.?

John Virant, President of Rounder, said ?We?ve always been the little
label that could, and our new affiliation with Concord ? another
fiercely independent organization that shares our core values --
ensures that we can remain true to our central calling:  discovering
and nurturing quality musical talent.?

About Concord Music Group:
Concord Music Group is one of the largest independent record and music
publishing companies in the world and is owner of a rich and
historically significant catalog of recordings. Concord Music Group?s
legendary family of labels include Concord Records, Concord Jazz,
Fantasy, Stax, Milestone, Riverside, Specialty, Telarc, Peak, Heads Up,
Prestige and several others.  They include titles from some of the most
admired and enduring names in music, including Ray Charles, John
Coltrane, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald,
Isaac Hayes, Little Richard, Thelonious Monk, Oscar Peterson, Rosemary
Clooney, George Shearing and Mel Torme. The group?s current roster of
world-class artists includes George Benson, Chick Corea, Kurt Elling,
Will Downing, Kenny G, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Sergio Mendes,
Esperanza Spalding, Macy Gray, Angie Stone and many more. In 2007,
Concord partnered with Starbucks Entertainment to form Hear Music, an
innovative record label rooted in quality, authenticity and passion.
Hear Music works directly with artists, both emerging and established,
to bring quality music to the widest possible audience, in both
Starbucks locations and music retailers worldwide. Hear Music releases
include records from Paul McCartney, Joni Mitchell, James Taylor, John
Mellencamp, Elvis Costello and Playing For Change.

Offline Johnm

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Re: Concord Music Group Acquires Rounder Records
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2010, 10:08:13 AM »
Hi all,
Thanks (I guess) for that news, Bunker Hill.  It is pretty awful from my point of view.  Concord eviscerated the Fantasy catalog of its Prestige Blues and Jazz titles after purchasing Fantasy and it's very difficult to imagine Concord keeping discs of people like Blind Alfred Reed, Ed Haley and Rev. Pearly Brown in the Rounder catalog.  What an odd corporate strategy Concord has--to go after companies with catalogs of music they care nothing for and do not believe in--yecch!
All best,
Johnm

Offline uncle bud

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Re: Concord Music Group Acquires Rounder Records
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2010, 10:20:12 AM »
Pretty awful from anyone's point of view if they care about music, I'd say. I realize Rounder was not necessarily loved by some artists, but Concord should prove even worse for everyone. I wouldn't be surprised by a full-scale slaughter of Rounder's back catalogue.

But hey, they're partnered with Starbucks to bring us music with passion.

Next, WalMart buys Concord. China buys WalMart. Planet Zorg buys China...

Offline dj

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Re: Concord Music Group Acquires Rounder Records
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2010, 10:21:23 AM »
Don't let them buy Document!!!

Offline Bunker Hill

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Re: Concord Music Group Acquires Rounder Records
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2010, 10:44:32 AM »
Don't let them buy Document!!!
Hey that's putting ideas into their empty, corporate heads! We want Document to be around in August to celebrate 20 years since their first batch of CD releases.

Offline Mr.OMuck

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Re: Concord Music Group Acquires Rounder Records
« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2010, 03:11:01 PM »
This is the face of the record business today. Giant congloms buying up catalogues of music they care nothing about and mothballing them as pawns to be used in future acquisition negotiations. It might not be a bad idea for us to start a petition to Concord "demanding"  ;D that they make the music they own available, if not in hard copy form, at least on i-tunes or other download sites. If we could deliver 50,-100 thousand names they might deign it worth their while.  I've been told though, that their calculations are something like if they can't net more than a million out of it, it isn't worth doing.

To Whit:

Dear Concordians:
Congratulations on your acquisition of Rounder Records. As Musicians and Music lovers we are concerned at the ever decreasing number of beloved titles issued by companies like Prestige and Milestone available in any form, CD or download, to the public. Art is, as we all know, not a commodity like any other, in that once it enters the cultural bloodstream, it becomes something very akin to the common property of all. It is almost an act of desecration to make acknowledged musical masterpieces unavailable to the public. It is as if some agency shuttered the Louvre, the Metropolitan Museum or London's National Gallery. Stewardship of the critically important works of major and even less major musicians is a heavy cultural responsibility with clear mandates beyond concern for the bottom line. Chief among these is that the work remain in circulation. Smithsonian records has addressed the issue by a commitment to keep all of its titles available, even the least demanded and most obscure, by offering one-off copies to interested consumers. I would hope that Concord's leadership could see a way to embrace this level of cultural responsibility and offer the same or equivalent service to the community of musicians and music lovers.

Whaddaya think? Should we circulate this?
My loathings are simple: stupidity, oppression, crime, cruelty, soft music.
Vladimir Nabokov (1899 - 1977)

http://www.youtube.com/user/MuckOVision

Offline Johnm

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Re: Concord Music Group Acquires Rounder Records
« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2010, 03:15:41 PM »
I like it very much, Mr. O'Muck, for a number of reason, but first and foremost for its preemptive tone, which presumes that Concord is going to screw up if left to their own devices.  Based on their past history, it is an entirely justified assumption.  I would certainly sign such a document.
All best,
Johnm

Offline CF

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Re: Concord Music Group Acquires Rounder Records
« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2010, 04:31:13 PM »
Me twice.
Stand By If You Wanna Hear It Again . . .

Offline Mr.OMuck

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Re: Concord Music Group Acquires Rounder Records
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2010, 06:43:27 PM »

i'll find one of those online petition sites, then we can begin circulating it.
My loathings are simple: stupidity, oppression, crime, cruelty, soft music.
Vladimir Nabokov (1899 - 1977)

http://www.youtube.com/user/MuckOVision

Offline Stuart

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  • "The Voice of Almiqui"

Offline Mr.OMuck

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Re: Concord Music Group Acquires Rounder Records
« Reply #10 on: May 10, 2010, 01:14:33 PM »
I thought we might wait and see wut happens ;)
My loathings are simple: stupidity, oppression, crime, cruelty, soft music.
Vladimir Nabokov (1899 - 1977)

http://www.youtube.com/user/MuckOVision

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