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Troy Carter, manager for Lady Gaga and John Legend, is teaming with Capitol Music Group to form Atom Factory Music, a joint label that has signed two indie-rock bands, New York’s Basic Vacation and Los Angeles’ The Ceremonies. The deal will emphasize innovation and technology-based marketing strategies for both bands, as Atom Factory has an investment portfolio of over 40 startup and tech companies, including Soundcloud, Songza, Spotify and Turntable.fm.
“We couldn’t be happier that Troy and Atom Factory are our partners in this new label venture,” said Capitol Music Group executive vice president Michelle Jubelirer in a statement announcing the partnership. “Troy is an inspiring entrepreneur who’s developed an impressive team of young disruptors that are helping to shape the future of music and entertainment. They are always on the leading edge, developing new and innovative ways to connect artists with fans.”
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The new venture was first discussed in 2012 shortly after Universal Music Group chairman Lucian Grainge assembled the new team to run Capitol Records, led by Steve Barnett, following Universal’s merger with EMI. It also represents a renewed perspective on the value of labels for Carter, who discussed a strategy for The Ceremonies back in March at a panel at South By Southwest that was decidedly less reliant on a traditional structure.
“They created this record that’s lived in their bedroom for the past year — just three brothers making music,” Carter said at the time. “Instead of us taking it directly to a music label and signing things over, our idea was, ‘Let’s do it differently. Let’s split the royalty with the band. We own it together. It’s not gonna cost us any money to do Instagram, Twitter, all these other places that are free for now. We’re creating these new models as you go along because you gotta be able to take a risk.”
Carter tells Billboard that the “hybrid model” he’s formed with Capitol makes sense and can help take a band like Ceremonies to the next level. Read more about the joint venture at billboard.biz.
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