Clive Fisher, former Universal Music EVP, dies aged 71; Sir Lucian Grainge leads tributes to exec ‘who loved people’

Clive Fisher

Clive Fisher, a former Executive Vice President at Universal Music UK who played a hand in multiple key deals for the company, has died aged 71.

Fisher, a widely respected lawyer in the business, served as Universal Music UK’s Director of Legal & Business Affairs for 19 years, before promoted to EVP in 2005.

In that role, he reported to Sir Lucian Grainge – now UMG’s global CEO and Chairman – who was then boss of Universal Music Group International.

Fisher retired from his EVP post at Universal in July 2011, after 33 years in total with the company.

Following his retirement, he continued to work with UMG as an adviser to Grainge plus David Joseph (Universal Music UK Chairman & CEO), as well as a number of other senior executives.

Fisher was responsible for an array of cornerstone artist deals for Universal Music Group and its associated labels. These included agreements in the 1970s with The Cure and The Jam, through the 1980s with Level 42, and more recently with Elton John, Metallica, and Queen.

“Clive Fisher was a loyal colleague who loved people and enjoyed being in the company of characters… I will miss him greatly.”

Sir Lucian Grainge, Universal Music Group

Fisher was also heavily involved in a number of significant M&A deals at Universal, and was instrumental in UMG’s move into theater projects including the global hit, Mamma Mia! – which, since launching in 1999, has grossed over USD $4 billion in theaters worldwide.

Sir Lucian Grainge led the tributes to Fisher today (September 11), commenting: “Clive Fisher was a loyal colleague who loved people and enjoyed being in the company of characters. Over the 25 years we worked together, he created a unique role for himself as a behind-the-scenes dealmaker who used his soft-power and personal networks within the industry to close countless artist and label deals.

“Many times over the years someone would congratulate me for an executive’s work in making a deal. What they didn’t know was that it was Clive leveraging his relationships and his credibility within the legal community that was often the deciding factor. I will miss him greatly.”

Fisher was a board member of UK licensing organizations, PPL and VPL, from 1996 to 2005, and a BPI Rights Committee member for many years.

He was also a lifetime Wrexham FC supporter and a lover of the sausage sandwich.Music Business Worldwide