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|Parent company||Verve Label Group|
(Universal Music Group)
|Distributor(s)||Verve Label Group|
|Genre||American contemporary; historically Jazz music|
|Country of origin||United States|
|Location||New York City, New York|
|Official website|| vervelabelgroup|
Verve Records is an American record label owned by Universal Music Group (UMG). Founded in 1956 by Norman Granz, the label is home to the world's largest jazz catalogue, which includes recordings by artists such as Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone, Stan Getz, Bill Evans, Billie Holiday, and Oscar Peterson, among others.It absorbed the catalogues of Granz's earlier label, Clef Records, founded in 1946; Norgran Records, founded in 1953; and material which was previously licensed to Mercury Records.
Verve also served as the original home of rock acts such as The Velvet Underground, Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention. The restructured Verve Records is now part of the Verve Label Group (VLG), a subsidiary of Universal Music Group. This company is also home to historic imprints including Verve Forecast, Impulse! and Decca Records.
Norman Granz created Verve to produce new recordings by Ella Fitzgerald, whom he managed; the first album the label released was Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Cole Porter Song Book .The catalog grew throughout the 1950s and 1960s to include Charlie Parker, Bill Evans, Stan Getz, Billie Holiday, Oscar Peterson, Ben Webster, and Lester Young.
By 1960 Milton Rudin, Granz' attorney, represented Frank Sinatra and knew that Sinatra wanted his own label. Sinatra and Granz made a handshake deal, but negotiations broke down over price and Sinatra's desire that Granz remain head of the label. Granz sold Verve to MGM in 1960. Sinatra established Reprise Records and hired Mo Ostin, an executive at Verve, to run it. At Verve, Creed Taylor was made head producer. Taylor adopted a more commercial approach, terminating several contracts. He brought bossa nova to America with the release of Jazz Samba by Stan Getz and Charlie Byrd, Getz/Gilberto , and Rain Forest by Walter Wanderley. Verve's arrangers included Claus Ogerman and Oliver Nelson. According to Ogerman in Jazzletter, he arranged 60–70 albums for Verve from 1963–1967.
In 1964, Taylor supervised the creation of a folk music subsidiary named Verve Folkways which was later renamed Verve Forecast. Taylor left Verve in 1967 to form CTI Records. Aside from jazz, Verve's catalogue included the Righteous Brothers, the Velvet Underground, Frank Zappa & the Mothers of Invention, Rare Earth, and the Blues Project, as well as a series of "Sound Impressions of an American on Tour" records which was produced in cooperation with Esquire Magazine.
While the Velvet Underground's records did not initially sell well, they became a major influence in independent rock music. Their debut album, The Velvet Underground & Nico , is hailed as one of the greatest records of all time[ by whom? ] while their second album, White Light/White Heat , has a major cult following for its bold, noisy sound, and poetically provocative lyricism.
In the 1970s, Verve became part of PolyGram, incorporating the Mercury/EmArcy jazz catalog, which Philips, part owners of PolyGram had earlier acquired. Verve Records became the Verve Music Group after PolyGram was merged with Seagram's Universal Music Group in 1999. The jazz holdings from the merged companies were folded into this sub-group.
In 1990, British group Talk Talk signed to Polydor after conflicts with their previous label EMI regarding a lack of commercial allure on their fourth album, Spirit of Eden . Their fifth and final album, Laughing Stock , was released through Verve on September 16, 1991 and, while being slightly divisive at the time, has since been reconsidered by critics and fans as their masterpiece and a precursor to the post-rock movement.
In the 1990s, as part of PolyGram Classics and Jazz, Verve signed Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, Joe Henderson, Roy Hargrove, John Scofield, Shirley Horn, Betty Carter, Abbey Lincoln, Chris Botti, Jeff Lorber, Gino Vannelli, Art Porter, Will Downing, and Incognito.
When Universal and Polygram merged in 1998, Verve's holdings were merged with Universal's GRP Recording Company to become Verve Music Group. After forays into Americana and adult contemporary music, Verve was corporately aligned with Universal Music Enterprises (UMe) and was no longer a stand-alone label within UMG.
The Verve imprint itself manages much of the jazz catalog that once belonged to PolyGram (not including recordings by Herb Alpert for his A&M Records label which Alpert acquired in a legal settlement with Universal Music and are licensed to Shout! Factory),while the Impulse! Records imprint manages the portion of Universal's catalog that was acquired from ABC Records, which itself includes the jazz catalog of the Famous Music Group, which was once owned by Paramount Pictures/Gulf+Western, but which was sold to ABC in 1974. Meanwhile, GRP manages the rest of MCA/Universal's jazz catalog, including releases once issued on the Decca and Chess labels.
The Verve Label Group has expanded its output beyond jazz to include crossover classical music, progressive pop, and show tunes (by absorbing Decca Records' Broadway label and taking over ownership of the label's library including EMI's, MGM Records', and MCA Records' musical theater catalogs).
The Verve Label Group is the American contemporary, classic and jazz division of Universal Music Group in the US. Labels in the group include Verve and Impulse labels and Universal Music Classics. Verve labels are Verve Records and Verve Forecast. Universal Music Classics consists of Decca Gold label plus represents the European imprints: Decca, Decca Classics, Deutsche Grammophon, and Mercury KX plus ECM Records distributed label.
On May 20, 2016, the newly-formed Verve Label Group appointed industry veteran Danny Bennett as its president and CEO. Besides Verve, the label group was formed with Decca Records, Decca Classics, Deutsche Grammophon, Mercury Classics, and distributed label ECM. The group relocated to New York City.
The label group in March 2019 was further restructured to its global classical and jazz unit. Dickon Stainer, President and CEO of Universal Classics and Jazz, would lead the group with Bennett exiting his post.The Decca Broadway label for original cast recording was relaunched in May 2019.
Decca Records is a British record label established in 1929 by Edward Lewis. Its U.S. label was established in late 1934 by Lewis, Jack Kapp, American Decca's first president, and Milton Rackmil, who later became American Decca's president. In 1937, anticipating Nazi aggression leading to World War II, Lewis sold American Decca and the link between the U.K. and U.S. Decca labels was broken for several decades. The British label was renowned for its development of recording methods, while the American company developed the concept of cast albums in the musical genre.
Polydor Records Ltd. is a German-British record label that operates as part of Universal Music Group. It has a close relationship with Universal's Interscope Geffen A&M Records label, which distributes Polydor's releases in the United States. In turn, Polydor distributes Interscope releases in the United Kingdom. Polydor Records Ltd. was established in London in 1954 as a British subsidiary of German company Deutsche Grammophon/Schallplatte Grammophon GmbH. It was renamed Polydor Ltd. in 1972.
ASV Records was a London-based record label set up by Harley Usill, founder of Argo Records, Decca producer and former Argo general manager, Kevin Daly, and producer Jack Boyce, after Argo's parent company Decca was bought by PolyGram in 1980. ASV stood for "Academy Sound and Vision". The label was bought by the Sanctuary Records Group in May 1999.
Mercury Records is an American record label owned by Universal Music Group. It had significant success as an independent operation in the 1940s and 1950s. Smash Records and Fontana Records were sub labels of Mercury. In the United States, it is operated through Republic Records; in the United Kingdom and Japan, it is distributed by EMI Records.
London Recordings is a British record label that marketed records in the United States, Canada, and Latin America for Decca Records from 1947 to 1980 before becoming semi-independent. The London name — as London American Recordings, often shortened to London American — was also used by British Decca in the UK market, for releases taken from American labels, which British Decca licensed.
MGM Records was a record label founded by the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer film studio in 1946 for the purpose of releasing soundtrack recordings of their musical films. It transitioned into a pop music label that continued into the 1970s. The company also released soundtrack albums of the music for some of their non-musical films as well, and on rare occasions, cast albums of off-Broadway musicals such as The Fantasticks and the 1954 revival of The Threepenny Opera. In one instance, MGM Records released the highly successful soundtrack album of a film made by another studio, Columbia Pictures's Born Free (1966).
PolyGram N.V. was a multinational entertainment company and major music record label formerly based in the Netherlands. It was founded in 1962 as the Grammophon-Philips Group by Dutch corporation Philips and German corporation Siemens, to be a holding for their record companies, and was renamed "PolyGram" in 1972. The name was chosen to reflect the Siemens interest Polydor Records and the Philips interest Phonogram Records. The company traced its origins through Deutsche Grammophon back to the inventor of the flat disc gramophone, Emil Berliner.
Blue Thumb Records was an American record label founded in 1968 by Bob Krasnow and former A&M Records executives Tommy LiPuma and Don Graham. Blue Thumb's last record was released in 1978. In 1995, the label was revived and remained active until 2005.
The Island Def Jam Music Group (IDJMG) was an American recording music unit, formed on New Year's Eve 1998 by the Universal Music Group. It consists of labels devised and consisted under the basic operations of Island Records and Def Jam Recordings. On April Fools Day 2014, Universal Music publicly announced the disbandment of the Island Def Jam Music Group, leaving Island, Def Jam and its affiliated subsidiaries as separate sister labels.
Philips Records is a record label founded by the Dutch electronics company Philips. It was founded as Philips Phonographische Industrie in 1950. In 1946, Philips acquired the company which pressed records for British Decca's Dutch outlet in Amsterdam.
Universal Music Group Nashville is Universal Music Group's country music subsidiary. Some of the labels in this group include MCA Nashville Records, Mercury Nashville Records, Lost Highway Records, Capitol Records Nashville and EMI Records Nashville. UMG Nashville not only handles these imprints, but also manages the country music catalogues of record labels Universal Music and predecessor companies acquired over the years including ABC Records, Decca Records, Dot Records, DreamWorks Records, Kapp Records, MGM Records and Polydor Records.
Between 1935 and 1955, American singer Ella Fitzgerald was signed to Decca Records. Her early recordings as a featured vocalist were frequently uncredited. Her first credited single was 78 RPM recording "I'll Chase the Blues Away" with the Chick Webb Orchestra. Fitzgerald continued recording with Webb until his death in 1939, after which the group was renamed Ella Fitzgerald and Her Famous Orchestra. With the introduction of 10" and 12" Long-Playing records in the late 1940s, Decca released several original albums of Fitzgerald's music and reissued many of her previous single-only releases. From 1935 to the late 1940s Decca issued Ella Fitzgerald's recordings on 78rpm singles and album collections, in book form, of four singles that included eight tracks. These recordings have been re-issued on a series of 15 compact disc by the French record label Classics Records between 1992 and 2008.
Claus Ogerman was a German arranger, conductor, and composer best known for his work with Billie Holiday, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Frank Sinatra, Michael Brecker, and Diana Krall.
Decca Broadway is an American record label specializing in musical theater recordings founded in 1999 by Decca Records and is a unit of Universal Music Group. Decca Broadway issued both new original cast albums as well as reissues of classic musical theater performances from the catalogues of record labels Universal Music and predecessor companies acquired over the years including Decca which pioneered the release of original cast albums. Decca Broadway was absorbed into UMG's Verve Records in 2013. Verve Label Group relaunched the Decca Broadway label in 2019.
Bird and Diz is a studio album by jazz saxophonist Charlie Parker and trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie. It was recorded primarily on June 6, 1950, in New York City. Two tracks featured on the original pressing, "Passport" and "Visa", were recorded by Parker, without Gillespie and with different personnel than the other tracks, in March and May 1949. The album was originally issued in 1952 in 10" format as a collection of 78 rpm singles on the Verve subsidiary label Clef Records.
Decca Gold is a United States-based record label focusing on classical repertoire. It falls under the umbrella of Verve Label Group, owned by Universal Music Group. The label has a new roster of classical artists and partnerships, and was inspired by the historic Decca Gold Label Series established in 1956 that featured artists such as Andrés Segovia, Leonard Bernstein, Claudio Arrau and Dave Brubeck. The label's first album, Emerson String Quartet's Chaconnes and Fantasias: Music of Britten and Purcell, was released on April 21, 2017. Decca Gold partnered with the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition to release recordings of the Gold, Silver and Bronze winners. That album reached No. 1 on the Billboard Classical Traditional Chart.
A&M Records was an American record label founded as an independent company by Herb Alpert and Jerry Moss in 1962. Due to the success of the discography A&M released, the label garnered interest and was acquired by PolyGram in 1989 and began distributing releases from Polydor Ltd. from the UK. Throughout its operations, A&M housed well-known acts such as Alpert himself, Squeeze, Gin Blossoms, Dishwalla, Joe Cocker, Procol Harum, Captain & Tennille, Sting, Sergio Mendes, Ozark Mountain Daredevils, Supertramp, Bryan Adams, Burt Bacharach, Liza Minnelli, The Carpenters, Paul Williams, Quincy Jones, Janet Jackson, Cat Stevens, Peter Frampton, Elkie Brooks, Carole King, Styx, Dennis DeYoung, Extreme, Amy Grant, Joan Baez, The Police, Jann Arden, CeCe Peniston, Shanice, Blues Traveler, Soundgarden, Duffy, Phil Ochs, Sheryl Crow, Yellow Magic Orchestra, and Nazareth.
The recordings of American jazz saxophonist Stan Getz from 1944 to 1991.
This is the complete discography of the main 12-inch (8000) series of LPs issued by Verve Records, a label founded in 1956 by producer Norman Granz in Los Angeles, California. Alongside new sessions Granz re-released many of the recordings of his earlier labels Clef and Norgran on Verve.