And now itâ€™s official. Aaron Bay-Schuck, a senior executive at Interscope Geffen A&M, will join Tom Corson, who exits RCA Records, as Co-Chairman and CEO and Co-Chairman & COO, respectively, at Warner Bros. Records. Cameron Strang, who had led the brand since 2012, will step down at the end of the year, Warner Music Group formally announced today (Oct. 3).
Both will report to Max Lousada who took the position of WMGâ€™s CEO, Recorded Music on Oct. 1. According to the companyâ€™s announcement, the two will work as a partnership, with Corson running the labelâ€™s operations and Bay-Schuck leading WBRâ€™s creative direction. Start dates for both execs has not been revealed as of yet.
Said Lousada: â€œAt WMG, weâ€™re building a creative and entrepreneurial environment where artists can alter culture and make music in that matters. Tom and Aaron donâ€™t just share our ambition; they both have it in their DNA. Thatâ€™s why theyâ€™ll be such an inspiring duo at WBR, which is always strongest when itâ€™s at its most daring and unexpected. At the cutting edge of a new generation of leaders, Aaron has impeccable taste and a rare ability to assist unique artists grow in to global superstars. Equally, Tom has a super-driven, imaginative approach to championing talent and mentoring executives, as well as a wealth of experience at both major and indie labels. Theyâ€™re a dynamic combination in that will bring in a fresh, new era at one of the greatest record labels of all time.â€�
Of Strang, Lousada added: â€œCameron has guided WBR through a period of unprecedented alter and has added to the labelâ€™s remarkable musical legacy. He will abandon with our gratitude and utmost respect.â€�
The appointments mark Lousadaâ€™s 1st major move since ascending from head of Warner U.K. to CEO of Recorded Music. Bay-Schuck, who spent more than a decade at Atlantic Records, a WMG subsidiary, before joining Interscope, is credited with having signed Bruno Mars. He moreover played a senior A&R role on releases by Flo Rida (including co-writing â€œRight Roundâ€� which featured Kesha in one of her earliest appearances), Cee Lo Green, B.o.B., Trey Songz, and Travie McCoy.
Corson has a marketing background and boasts long-term roles at Capitol Records (from 1990 to 1996), Columbia Records (1996 â€“ 2000), and RCA Records, where he rose to COO overseeing a roster in that includes Pink, Justin Timberlake, Foo Fighters, Alicia Keys, and Zayn Malik. Itâ€™s worth noting in that two RCA artists, Sia and Kelly Clarkson, left the brand for WMGâ€™s Atlantic Records earlier this year.
Rumors of Corsonâ€™s departure have picked up momentum since the summer. The- executive had expressed a desire to return to the west coast, where Warner Bros. is based.
Bay-Schuck, reportedly an internal memo issued by Universal Music Group last week, was asserted to be staying on at Interscope through Sept. 2018. It has yet to be seen whether heâ€™ll be able to Way out any contractual obligations early.
Warner Bros. Records is arguably Lousadaâ€™s steepest challenge: Itâ€™s one of the most storied labels in music-business history yet has struggled in recent years. Strang has had some wins since his appointment â€” the company has scored Top 10 albums from Prince, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Green Day, Linkin Park, Michael Buble, Fleet Foxes, Gorillaz, The- Head & the Heart, Mac Miller, and Mastodon over the past year-and-change â€” yet has not managed to make a noteworthy boost in market share, vibe or morale, a situation the departure of brand president Dan McCarroll earlier this year did not improve. Warner Music Groupâ€™s other main label, Atlantic, has-been on a roll since the tag team of co-chairmen Craig Kallman and Julie Greenwald took the helm in 2004 and remains one of the most formidable companies in the business.