Universal Music UK-owned EMI Records is launching a new label in the northern British city of Leeds, in Yorkshire, called EMI North.
The company claims that in launching EMI North, it becomes the first major label to open a physical space outside of London.
Based in Duke Studios, the creative hub in the city centre of Leeds, the label will be led by Clive Cawley, who moves over from his current role of MD, EMI to President, EMI North.
Universal says that the new label will be dedicated to working “with the very best musical talent in the North of England” and providing opportunities for young people to work in the industry.
Partnerships have already been struck with two companies based in the city, Clue Records, which recently celebrated its tenth anniversary, and Come Play With Me, a non-profit music development organisation.
Universal notes that the move marks a full circle for Cawley, who is originally from Yorkshire. He began his career as a Sales Representative for Universal Music in North Yorkshire, working with independent retailers across the North East of England.
After taking up a similar role in London’s West End, Cawley joined Mercury Records becoming MD before moving to EMI.
Over a two-decade career, Cawley has worked with artists including Beck, Elton John, Florence + The Machine, Lewis Capaldi, Loyle Carner, Metallica, Paul McCartney, Pearl Jam, Queen, Taylor Swift, The Killers and The Stone Roses.
As a result of the move to unite the two labels last March, Capitol Records UK’s roster and team became part of the wider EMI operation; Capitol Records UK continued as a division of EMI label group, alongside Motown UK.
EMI Records is Universal Music UK’s biggest label by market share, both in terms of album sales and album-equivalent streaming.
“Discovering and nurturing new talent from right across the UK is the lifeblood of what we do and there’s nobody better than Clive to be at the helm of this exciting new chapter for our historic label.”
Jo Charrington and Rebecca Allen, EMI
Jo Charrington and Rebecca Allen, Co-Presidents, EMI, said: “Discovering and nurturing new talent from right across the UK is the lifeblood of what we do and there’s nobody better than Clive to be at the helm of this exciting new chapter for our historic label.”
The announcement coincides with Leeds Year Of Culture 2023 which sees the city become centre stage of the UK’s cultural scene with dance to design, art to architecture, poetry to pop, sculpture to sport, grassroots community theatre to performances in the city’s varied venues.
“I’m delighted to finally open the doors to EMI North with a very simple goal: to support and invest in local talent, helping them to find new audiences and build their businesses.”
Clive Cawley, EMI North
Clive Cawley, President, EMI North, said: “I’m delighted to finally open the doors to EMI North with a very simple goal: to support and invest in local talent, helping them to find new audiences and build their businesses.
“We have been overwhelmed by the reaction from the creative community in Leeds and beyond and are raring to go.”Music Business Worldwide