Producer Rubin finalizes Columbia position


Rick Rubin's move to Columbia Records is now official. The label released a statement Monday afternoon confirming the Rubin hire and stating that he would "form a dynamic and creative executive partnership" with Columbia chairman Steve Barnett, under a new model devised by Sony Music topper Rob Stringer. There are no initial details on what Rubin's exact role at the label will be or where he will be based.

As part of the deal, Rubin will bring his American Recordings imprint to the company. American, which for the last year-plus has been distributed by Warner Music Group, has a roster that includes Slayer, Dan Wilson and (International) Noise Conspiracy. It also controls catalog from Johnny Cash, The Black Crowes, Danzig, and The Jayhawks.

As expected, in addition to producing albums for Sony BMG acts, Rubin will continue his producing activities for artists at other major labels. In this capacity he will continue to produce artists signed to Warner Bros. including Linkin Park and Metallica.

Rubin produced the Dixie Chicks' Grammy Award-winning Columbia release "Taking the Long Way," which ranked as the No. 9 top-selling album last year with more than 1.8 million copies sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan. He's also produced a string of hits from rock act System of a Down-most recently 2005's dual release "Hypnotize"/"Mezmerize," which has sold more than 3 million units combined. The band is distributed under a joint deal between Columbia and American.