In a move that seems to be more and more prevalent and accepted in today’s music industry, successful Def Jam R&B artist Terius “The-Dream” Nash has been announced as Executive Vice President of A&R for Def Jam Recordings, a division of the Universal Music Group (UMG). The-Dream is a Grammy Award-winning artist that recently released a mixtape last summer called 1977, as well as his fourth studio album entitled Love IV MMXII.
Having crafted a string of mega hits in past years for artists likes Rihanna, J. Holiday and Mary J. Blidge, as well as participating in production for Jay-Z, Kanye West, Mariah Carey and Celine Dion, The-Dream will now officially take the reigns over Def Jam’s newly expanded A&R Senior Management team.
The announcement of The-Dreams’ new role was made by Barry Weiss, chairman & CEO of Universal Republic and Island Def Jam Motown, along with Karen Kwak, executive vice president/head of A&R, Island Def Jam Music Group. Weiss said in a statement that The-Dream is “a gifted songwriter and producer who writes from a unique cultural point of view.”
So, from the looks of it, Weiss and the bigwigs at Universal and Island Def Jam are hoping that the massive success The-Dream has had in the studio and on the charts can translate into even more success for its impressive stable of artists in Hip Hop, R&B and Pop music. The-Dream is reported to be working on album projects with Rihanna and G.O.O.D. Music emcee Pusha T.
In addition to continuing to play the role of one of the industry’s most sought after singer/songwriters and producers, The-Dream will have a wide ranging set of duties to adhere to as the new Executive VP of A&R at one of the most prestigious and respected brand names in urban music and all of music.
Not only will he oversee and participate in new music projects for current and new artists, but also The-Dream will also be tasked with seeking out and discovering new talent, and will be a main producer on music projects across genres at Def Jam Recordings. And more than likely, Mr. Nash will do all of this while trying to remain successful as one of Def Jam’s most lucrative artists.
In moving forward in his duties, The-Dream will work very closely with Weiss and Kwak (mentioned earlier), as well as Joie Manda, president, Def Jam Recordings, and Steve Bartels, president & COO, Island Def Jam Music Group. In a statement that was released after the announcement, The-Dream says that he is “committed as I have been previously to bringing the power of belief in the artist back to the forefront.”
So, can this be considered a good move on the part of Def Jam Recordings? Is the Artist/A&R model what we can now expect to see from the mainstream urban music space, with more and more successful artists being appointed to positions of power within the offices of music companies like Def Jam? After all, before all the fallout from his alleged brawl with Rick Ross at the BET Hip Hop Awards, Young Jeezy had been named Senior VP or A&R at Atlantic Records, and the same can be said for R&B singer, songwriter and producer Ne-Yo over at Motown. Therefore, the Artist/A&R model seems to be already ingrained into the fabric of the mainstream urban music space, which continues to evolve day by day.
My prediction is that we will see more and more of this, pretty much as a symptom of the mainstream music industry continuing to go through so many changes and evolutions, and the heads of major music companies like Def Jam, Atlantic and Motown trying to do all they can to preserve their current rosters and attract new talent. After all, these aren’t normal times and they don’t call for normal measure, especially in the music industry.
Congrats to The-Dream on his new powerful gig.
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