UK music industry veteran Charlie Rapino has been appointed to the position of Vice President, International & Communications of Italian distribution company and record label Artist First.
Based in London, Rapino, who has been a consultant to Artist First since 2016, will assume overall responsibility for A&R and talent acquisition, and will oversee international communications for the company.
Rapino first came to prominence as one half of The Rapino Brothers alongside Marco Sabiu.
The duo found success as a dance music production team in the 1990s, working with artists that include Corona (Rhythm of the Night) and Take That.
In 1999, he was appointed as a consultant to Sony international under music executive David Massey, before leaving to become an advisor to Ennio Morricone.
In 2007, he became President of A&R at Decca Records, and in 2011 became a judge on the Italian TV talent show Amici.
Following a stint as a consultant to Ferdy Unger-Hamilton at Polydor Records, in 2012 he joined consulting firm Portofino Productions, before joining Artist First as a consultant.
Artist First was launched by Claudio Ferrante in 2009 and has 50 employees in Milan.
Artist First distributes a range of labels and has in its own roster, which includes Gazzelle, Fulminacci, Alfa, Dardust and Zero Assoluto.
The company has a shareholding in 432 Srl, a management company led by Alessandro Fabozzi that represents Italian artists Le Vibrazioni, Francesco Gabbani Mace, Dolcenera and Irama.
“[Charlie Rapino’s] expertise and experience, particularly in the international marketplace, has been a major factor in our continued growth.”
Claudio Ferrante, Artist First
Claudio Ferrante, founder and CEO of Artist First, said: “Charlie Rapino has been a consultant, advisor and confidant to Artist First since 2016 and we pleased to announce his new full-time role as Vice President, International & Communications.
“His expertise and experience, particularly in the international marketplace, has been a major factor in our continued growth and success and as we expand our global footprint he will be taking a key strategic role in helping us navigate the way forward.”
“Artist First is a wonderful success story.”
Charlie Rapino added: “Artist First is a wonderful success story and has been at the forefront of innovation in the Italian music industry for many years.
“They are incredibly ambitious and eager to build a presence in the international marketplace so it is an absolute privilege to be taking on this new role and to be part of this exciting new chapter in their story”Music Business Worldwide