Business News Labels & Publishers

What future for Epic US post Ghost?

By | Published on Thursday 18 November 2010

The Hollywood Reporter has published a long article on the decline of Sony’s Epic Records, which, it basically alleges, was sped up under recently axed president Amanda Ghost.

Officially the British songwriter “stepped down” from the top role at the Epic US label “so she has more time to spend on her own songwriting and production work”, though her boss, Rob Stringer, while complimentary of Ghost’s “creativity”, was suspiciously quiet on her tangible achievements in the Epic chief role.

The Reporter says that just a week before Ghost’s somewhat sudden departure from the Epic job she gatecrashed the stage at the label’s showcase at the New York CMJ Convention, where one of the Sony division’s priority new acts were one song into their set, to take issue with the quality of the sound system in the venue.

They quote someone at the showcase as saying: “She was screaming: ‘Who booked this fucking place? It sounds like shit! We don’t treat our artists this way at Epic. I’m not letting them play another minute!’ The room just went silent”. And so the Epic showcase was halted. As was Ghost’s role in running the label seven days later.

In defence of Ghost, the magazine does admit that Epic US has been on the skids for some time, and that handing the division to someone with no management experience was therefore unwise, or “radical” to use Stringer’s own words. Some now wonder what the future for the Sony division really holds, with some predicting it will basically be merged with sister label Columbia, who would presumably appreciate all the Michael Jackson money that comes with it.

Of course, Epic UK is not really linked to its American namesake, the imprint having been originally dropped over here when Sony and BMG merged, only to be relaunched as a much smaller division alongside RCA and Columbia in 2007.

You can read the full Hollywood Reporter article here.