With the major record companies now jointly signing more than 50 artists every month… is it perhaps inevitable that they’re going to start running out of distinctively different names?
Interscope Records and City Entertainment Group have today (June 17) announced the signing of rising Chicago-rooted R&B singer-songwriter, Ann Marie.
Santa Monica-based Interscope is predicting big things for the act, with the label’s Nicole Wyskoarko, EVP Urban Operations, noting: “Ann Marie is the prototype for today’s artist. She’s developed and cultivated a dedicated fan base using the tools of today while understanding the pace and quality of product needed to succeed in the modern music landscape.”
Why, then, did we mention Atlantic Records in the headline above?
Because the Warner label’s UK HQ, led by President Ben Cook, has already enjoyed some serious international success with a British artist – and friend of Ed Sheeran – called Anne-Marie (who happens to have racked up billions of streams).
The difference there: an additional ‘e’, and a hyphen.
Anne-Marie (with additional ‘e’ and hyphen) is a big deal in the UK: her debut album, Speak Your Mind, was released in April last year and reached No.3 on the Official UK Albums Chart – becoming the biggest debut album by a domestic artist in Britain in 2018.
Also in 2018, Anne-Marie (with additional ‘e’ and hyphen) released a collaboration with Marshmello, Friends, which went Top 5 in markets like the UK and Australia (and No.1 in Germany) – and hit No.11 on the Billboard Hot 100. It’s been streamed more than 700m times on Spotify.
Another big hit, 2002, co-penned by Steve Mac and Ed Sheeran, reached No.3 last year in the UK, going double-platinum in the market.
Anne-Marie (with additional ‘e’ and hyphen) has also appeared as a collaborator on other people’s smashes, including 2016’s UK chart-topper (and US No.9 single) Rockabye, by Clean Bandit.
That track’s current YouTube view count? 2.1 billion.
Interscope, however, is feeling very confident that its own Ann Marie (no additional ‘e’, no hyphen) will make her mark as a completely unique proposition.
Earlier this year, the Southside Chicago artist released Tripolar 2 which reached No.3 on the Apple Music R&B charts, while Rolling Stone has written that she’s “releasing some of the year’s best R&B”.
Ann Marie said today: “I’m really excited to be joining the Interscope family, they love and are supportive of everything that I’ve built so far on my own. I’m just ready to go even harder and keep putting out amazing music.”
And Baroline, Senior Director A&R Interscope Records, commented: “It’s an important time in music for women and Ann Marie is going to play a major role in creating the sound of now.
“I’m thrilled to have gotten to know Ann Marie and that she’s chosen to partner with the staff at Interscope to bring her sound to the world.”
Baroline, Interscope Records
“She’s a rare combination of singer/songwriter that speaks for a generation and whose sound is already resonating beyond her Chicago roots. I’m thrilled to have gotten to know Ann Marie and that she’s chosen to partner with the staff at Interscope to bring her sound to the world.”
Now based out of Atlanta, Ann Marie has accumulated over 700,000 subscribers on YouTube which landed her a spot on the platform’s Foundry Artists list (YouTube’s artist development program).
Interscope says that the act now pulls in over 100,000 streams per day on Apple Music, while she’s also racked up an additional 450k+ streams on Spotify.
[Pictured, main, L-R: John Janick (CEO, Interscope Records), Baroline (Senior Director A&R, Interscope Records), Ann Marie, Mikkey Halsted (Manager, The City Group Entertainment), Nicole Wyskoarko (EVP Urban Operations Interscope Records), Joie Manda (EVP, Interscope Records).]Music Business Worldwide