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Universal Forms Artist Management Company with Live Nation

Largest label group teams with top ticketing company

September 20, 2011 8:45 AM ET
irving azoff live nation universal music
Live Nation's Executive Chairman, Irving Azoff.
Charley Gallay/Getty Images For City Of Hope

Universal Music Group is forming a joint venture with Live Nation Entertainment to form a new artist management company. The deal will bring Universal's four management firms under the banner of Live Nation's Front Line Management Group, which boasts major artists such as the Eagles, Christina Aguilera and Jimmy Buffett as clients. Live Nation will have control and co-ownership of the company.

Photos: Random Notes
Since Universal is the world's largest record company and Live Nation – which includes Ticketmaster – is the biggest ticketing company, this joint venture is likely to give clients an incredible degree of leverage in the market. The companies are already planning on making the most of their collective resources. "We are creating a series of new platforms and global direct-to-consumer initiatives that will further expand the presence of our artists in the evolving marketplace while providing music fans with even more flexibility in how they consume music," Lucian Grainge, chief executive of Universal Music, said in a statement.

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Song Stories

“Bizness”

Tune-Yards | 2011

The opening track to Merrill Garbus’ second album under the Tune-Yards banner (she also plays in the trio Sister Suvi), “Bizness” is a song about relationships that is as colorful as the face paint favored by Garbus both live and in her videos. Disjointed funk bass, skittering African beats, diced-and-sliced horns and Garbus’ dynamic voice, which ranges from playful coos to throat-shredding howls, make “Bizness” reminiscent of another creative medium. “I'd like for them not to be songs as much as quilts or collages or something,” Garbus said.

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