LONDON, 1 DECEMBER 2011 — EMI Music is delighted to announce two new signings to Virgin Records – London band Bastille and Swedish superstar DJ and producer Eric Prydz. Bastille and Eric Prydz are the first artists to join Virgin Records since Nick Burgess was appointed VP A&R for the label earlier this month by Miles Leonard, President Parlophone and Virgin A&R Labels.
Bastille, formed last year by singer-songwriter Dan Smith with band members Chris ‘Woody’ Wood, Will Farquarson and Kyle Simmons, have signed a new long term recording agreement with Virgin in a hotly contested deal. The band’s debut single, the double A-side ‘Flaws’/’Icarus’, was released earlier this year, and during the summer they performed at a number of festivals around the UK including Glastonbury, Isle of Wight and Blissfields. Bastille are currently recording their debut album which will be released by Virgin Records in 2012.
Bastille’s manager Polly Comber said: “Nick and Miles have the experience and the vision necessary to take this band to the next level, and with Virgin/EMI we have found the perfect home.”
Nick Burgess said: “I’m thrilled to be back at Virgin Records and leading a fantastic A&R team into a successful new era under Miles Leonard. The signing of Bastille is something everyone at Virgin is incredibly excited about, as not only are they a fantastic band with great songs, they also have massive potential to grow and connect with a very wide audience. Winning this very competitive deal is testament to the passion and enthusiasm of the whole team at Virgin.”
Eric Prydz is one of the most successful DJs and producers in dance music. He has released a number of huge hit singles including ‘Proper Education’ and ‘Pjanoo’, which both reached number two in the UK, and the number one hit ‘Call On Me’. Eric has also built up a strong catalogue of music and a huge following via his Pryda label releases. Last weekend his ‘EPIC’ show was attended by 11,000 people at Alexandra Palace in London where Jason Ellis, Director of A&R at Virgin Records, and Miles Leonard signed him to Virgin.
Eric Prydz said: “I am very excited to finally be back with EMI UK! They were my first home back in 1999/2000 when I was signed to Parlophone/Regal. EMI has been very supportive over the years, even though I have been signed to other labels, there are not many of my UK or Ibiza shows where Jason Ellis hasn’t attended! To an artist, it is vital to find a label that understands what you do, and what you want to accomplish, I am now sure that I have finally found just that with Virgin.”
Jason Ellis said: “We’re delighted to welcome Eric to the label, given his undisputed standing as one of the best producers of his generation. With his stunning live show now in place and exciting new music on the way, we’re thrilled about helping develop the next phase of Eric’s career.”
The addition of Eric Prydz to the Virgin roster builds on EMI Music UK’s leadership in dance music. EMI is home to artists including David Guetta, deadmau5, Swedish House Mafia, The Chemical Brothers, Daft Punk, The Japanese Popstars and now Eric Prydz. In the 12 months to the end of November 2011 23.2% of dance tracks and 21.4% of all dance albums were released by EMI. EMI was also the market leader in single artist dance albums with a 32.4% share according to Official Charts Company data.
Miles Leonard said: “Both these key signings to Virgin show that we are at the forefront of signing great new music across all genres and have breadth of knowledge and experience in all areas. I am immensely proud to be working with both Eric Prydz and Dan Smith and Bastille.”
Bastille sign to EMI Music’s Virgin Records label at EMI’s London headquarters. Pictured left to right: Mark Furman (Business Affairs Director, Virgin Records), Bastille band members Chris ‘Woody’ Wood, Will Farquarson, Kyle Simmons, Dan Smith, Nick Burgess (VP A&R, Virgin Records), Polly Comber (manager of Bastille), Josh Smith (lawyer for Bastille), Miles Leonard (President Parlophone and Virgin A&R Labels), Claire O’Brien (VP Marketing, Virgin Records), Debra Geddes (Senior Director, EMI Artist Publicity), Manish Arora (VP Promotions and Press, Virgin Records).
Eric Prydz after signing to EMI Music’s Virgin Records. Pictured left to right: Miles Leonard (President Parlophone and Virgin A&R Labels), Eric Prydz, Jason Ellis (Director of A&R, Virgin Records), Michael Sershall (manager of Eric Prydz).