Legendary Vanguard, Sugar Hill and Ranwood labels to tap EMI’s network for digital and physical retail
Los Angeles (June 30, 2008) – Welk Music Group, which includes such prestigious record labels as Vanguard, Sugar Hill and Ranwood, and EMI Music, one of the world’s leading independent music companies, have entered into an agreement in which EMI will provide the Welk Music Group with digital and physical sales and distribution services on a worldwide basis. In addition, EMI will provide licensing and synchronization services on a non-exclusive basis to Welk’s acclaimed roster of artists.
Welk Music Group is home to two of the most revered and influential record labels of the last half-century, Vanguard Records and Sugar Hill Records. Vanguard Records has long held a reputation for eclectic, distinctive and groundbreaking recordings; a tradition that holds strong today. From such new and distinctive artists as Greg Laswell, Shawn Mullins, Mindy Smith whose debut One Moment More went on to sell over 300,000 copies, Nellie McKay and the legendary Levon Helm, to its rich and historical catalog of artists such as: Joan Baez, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Buddy Guy and Mississippi John Hurt, Vanguard continues to pursue its successful artistic vision.
Sugar Hill Records is the preeminent roots music label. From traditional bluegrass to legendary singer-songwriters and peerless instrumentalists such as Kasey Chambers, The Infamous Stringdusters, Sam Bush, to The Duhks, Gibson Brothers, Sarah Borges and Nickel Creek, the innovative trio who have a combined sales of over two million units with their first three albums, Sugar Hill continues to set the standard for American roots music.
Over the years, Welk’s group of owned and distributed labels feature an electic artist roster ranging from American music icons such as Dolly Parton, Rodney Crowell and George Jones; Adult Rock stalwarts Linda Ronstadt, Joan Osborne, Sinead O’Connor, Robert Cray and Blues Traveler, and emerging artists such as Matt Nathanson, Indigenous, Carbon Leaf, The Alternate Routes, Pictures and Sound and distributed artists such as Billy Bob Thornton & The Boxmasters, Taylor Hicks and Hootie and The Blowfish.
Kevin Welk, President of the Welk Music Group states: “EMI offers us unique, seamless, global reach, and allows us to tap into their strong relationship network with physical and digital partners around the world. Their bold moves to transform its business will serve our labels and our artists well as we work to extend their reach to new audiences on a variety of new music platforms.”
“We are honored to have Welk Music Group and its amazing roster of artists work with the EMI family,” said Ronn Werre, EMI Music President of Commercial Development. “EMI Music’s aim is to provide world class services to artists and to bring great music to fans. Kevin Welk and his team have built an illustrious catalog and active artist roster, and we are thrilled to offer EMI’s global capabilities to them. We look forward to working with the Welk Music family of labels and taking their artists to new levels of success.
About Welk Music Group
The Welk Music Group is owned by the Welk family and is one of the world’s leading independent record companies. The Welk Music Group encompasses three labels: Vanguard Records, Sugar Hill Records and Ranwood Records. The roster is comprised of such prestigious and popular artists such as Mindy Smith, Levon Helm, Shawn Mullins, Matt Nathanson, The Watson Twins, Sam Bush, The Duhks, The Infamous Stringdusters and Sarah Borges. Their rich and deep catalog recordings include, Doc Watson, John Fahey, Ricky Scaggs, and Guy Clark.
About EMI Music
EMI Music is the recorded music division of EMI Group Limited, the leading independent music company. Its EMI Music division represents artists spanning all musical tastes and genres. Its record labels include Angel, Astralwerks, Blue Note, Capitol, Capitol Nashville, EMI Classics, EMI CMG, EMI Records, EMI Televisa Music, Manhattan, Mute, Parlophone and Virgin. Artists on EMI labels include Lily Allen, The Beatles, Coldplay, Corinne Bailey Rae, Gorillaz, Hot Chip, Norah Jones, The Kooks, Korn, Kylie Minogue, Pink Floyd, Joss Stone, 30 Seconds To Mars, KT Tunstall, Keith Urban and Robbie Williams, as well as international artists such as Amaral (Spain), Camille (France), Utada Hikaru (Japan), LaFee (Germany), RBD (Mexico) and Vasco Rossi (Italy).
EMI has been at the cutting edge of the rapidly growing digital music marketplace since it released David Bowie’s ‘Hours’ as the world’s first ever album to be offered as a digital download in 1999. EMI has signed agreements with hundreds of digital partners to distribute its music across the globe, including its premium DRM-free, higher-quality offering sold through partners including Apple iTunes, Amazon.com and more. It continues to facilitate the development of a growing range of new digital business models to enable fans to experience and purchase its artists’ output through a number of different platforms including, legal peer-to-peer agreements with Mashboxx and GNAB, and a deal to offer advertising-supported videos on mobile phones in the US through Rhythm NewMedia.
Welk Music Group