Strang, the founder of New West Records and Southside Independent Music Publishing, will take the job effective January 1, 2011 and will be based in Los Angeles. David H Johnson will continue as Warner/Chappell’s Chairman until July 1, 2011, at which point Strang will assume the additional role of Warner/Chappell’s Chairman.
Johnson, who had served as WMG’s Executive Vice President and General Counsel since 1999, was initially elevated to serve as interim CEO of Warner/Chappell in 2006, and was subsequently promoted to Warner/Chappell’s Chairman & CEO in 2007.
Warner/Chappell has also acquired Strang’s Southside Independent Music Publishing, which was behind some of the biggest hits of 2010 including two of the songs nominated for the 2011 “Record of the Year” Grammy Award—B.o.B.’s “Nothin’ on You” and Cee Lo Green’s “F*** You.”
Other recent hit songs on Southside include: Bruno Mars’ “Grenade” (currently No. 1 on Billboard‘s Hot 100 Chart) and “Just the Way You Are” (which spent four weeks at No. 1 on the Hot 100); K’Naan’s “Wavin’ Flag” (which was No. 1 on Billboard’s European Hot 100 for three weeks); Brad Paisley’s “American Saturday Night” (which reached No. 1 on the Mediabase Country Airplay chart) and Uncle Kracker’s multi-format hit, “Smile.”
Warner Music Group’s Chairman & CEO, Edgar Bronfman, Jr., said, “Cameron’s impressive track record of identifying and signing some of the industry’s most successful emerging songwriters and catalogs, and his proven success as an entrepreneur make him the ideal executive to lead Warner/Chappell. He has that rare combination of business smarts, operational experience and creative instincts, and I’m confident he’ll be a great fit for the progressive and entrepreneurial culture that exists within WMG.”
Bronfman added, “I want to offer Dave my profound gratitude for his extraordinary stewardship of Warner/Chappell over the past few years. Originally I asked Dave to serve as CEO on an interim basis while we conducted a search for a permanent leader. But it became quickly apparent that the leadership skills, judgment and ability to recruit top executive talent that led to Dave’s success in the legal world also made him the right choice to guide Warner/Chappell through a critical period.
“During his tenure, Dave has delivered excellent results at Warner/Chappell, including dramatic growth in both synch and digital revenue, and assembled an industry-leading music production business through the acquisition of the Non-Stop, V, Carlin, GrooveAddicts and 615 Music libraries. Dave has proven to be a versatile and highly capable executive who can succeed in a variety of roles, and I can’t thank him enough for his significant contributions to Warner/Chappell and WMG.”
Johnson said, “It’s been an honor to serve as Chairman & CEO of Warner/Chappell. I’m enormously proud of the work we have done, the team we have built and the results we have produced over these past four years. Throughout that time, Edgar and I have been looking for the right executive to lead Warner/Chappell into its next growth phase. Cameron’s experience as a successful independent record and publishing executive makes him the right person to lead Warner/Chappell. He’s prepared to seize the industry’s new opportunities while maintaining a tight focus on A&R and songwriter development.
“I want to thank Edgar for giving me the opportunity to thrive at WMG in both corporate and operational capacities. What began as a temporary role at Warner/Chappell turned into a long-term position that has truly been one of the highlights of my long career in the entertainment industry. I look forward to working with Edgar and Cameron over the next six months as we ready Warner/Chappell for this exciting new chapter in its illustrious history.”
Strang said, “I am thrilled to be joining the WMG team, the most innovative group of executives in the business. While the decision to transition from an independent to a major was a difficult one for me, the more I got to know the WMG team – including Edgar, Dave and Lyor Cohen – the more I realized that we share a common vision of what makes a successful modern music company and how companies must serve their artists nimbly and energetically. I can’t imagine a more exciting time to be joining Warner/Chappell or a better home for Southside. I’m looking forward to working with the legendary Warner/Chappell roster of writers and catalog as well as Warner/Chappell’s many talented employees.”
Strang is the founder of both Southside Independent Music Publishing and New West Records, and co-founder of DMZ Records, a joint venture record label he launched with Grammy-winning producer, T-Bone Burnett, and Academy Award-winning filmmakers, Joel and Ethan Coen.Music Business Worldwide