Music Week honours Blackwell, AMG

UK: Island Records founder Chris Blackwell is officially the most influential music industry figure of the last 50 years, writes David Davies. The Academy Music Group (AMG) was among the other winners at this year's Music Week Awards, which took place in central London earlier this month.
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UK: Island Records founder Chris Blackwell is officially the most influential music industry figure of the last 50 years, writes David Davies. The Academy Music Group (AMG) was among the other winners at this year's Music Week Awards, which took place in central London earlier this month.

As previously reported on PSN-e (click here), the special award for most influential industry executive was devised to mark 50 years of Music Week, which is part of the same UBM publishing group as Pro Sound News Europe.

Chris Blackwell (pictured) was chosen from a field of 20 leading industry figures past and present, among them former EMI Music chairman/CEO Tony Wadsworth, promoter Harvey Goldsmith and late, legendary Led Zeppelin manager Peter Grant.

As the founder of Island Records, Blackwell played a pivotal role in establishing the careers of many influential acts, including Bob Marley & The Wailers, John Martyn, Nick Drake and King Crimson. Blackwell also developed the influential Jamaican music label Mango Records and, more recently, the media entertainment company Palm Pictures. The award was collected on Blackwell's behalf by former Island Records executive Nick Stewart.

In further recognition of the legendary Island label, former head of press Rob Partridge was acknowledged with a posthumous accolade, the Strat. During his long career as an in-house and independent PR, the widely-respected Partridge helped to nurture the careers of acts including Tom Waits and U2.

Other awards at this year's event went to Polydor (Record Company of the Year), XL (Independent Record Company of the Year), BBC Radio 2 (National Radio Station of the Year), AEG Live's Rob Hallett (Concert Promoter of the Year) and Xenomania (Producer of the Year).

There was also recognition for AMG, whose O2 Academy Brixton was named Music Venue of the Year. The company also had two other venues - O2 Shepherd's Bush Empire and O2 Academy Leeds - in contention for the award.

"It's always an enormous honour to be recognised within the industry and the last time Brixton won this award it was a joint accolade with Shepherd's Bush over ten years ago," noted AMG CEO John Northcote.

In other AMG news, the company recently acquired a majority share in ABC Glasgow. Occupying four floors on the city's Sauchiehall Street, the ABC incorporates two live music venues: ABC (1,362 capacity) and ABC 2 (350 capacity). Regular Music and PCL remain onboard as shareholders.

For AMG, the move further enhances its presence in Scotland's largest city, where it already owns and operates the 2,500-capacity O2 Academy Glasgow.



Music Week to honour most influential UK industry exec

UK: Tony Wadsworth (pictured), Chris Blackwell and Mickie Most are among those in the running for the special prize, reports PSN-e. A total of 20 leading industry figures past and present are under consideration for the Music Week honour, which recognises the most influential UK-based industry executive of the past five decades.

Voting moves online for key Music Week awards

UK: The winners of three new categories at this year's Music Week Awards are to become the first in the event's history to be decided by online voters. Visitors to have the chance to determine who will walk off with the prizes at the awards ceremony on 15 April for the newly-introduced categories of App of the Year, Festival of the Year and Studio of the Year.

Gearing up for British Music Week 09

UK: Organisers have launched a new interactive social networking site in preparation, reports David Davies. The site (link below) is designed to bring musicians, labels, brand managers, music fans and other interested parties together. Would-be users can create a profile, add friends, invite fans and have direct access to a new online community.


APRS to honour Boyd, Ludwig, Thomas

Producers Joe Boyd and Chris Thomas are among the distinguished figures to receive APRS Sound Fellowships at this year’s lunch, which will feature a toast from Music Publishers' Association CEO Stephen Navin.

Prism Sound, SADiE, PMC sponsoring GRAMMY Week event

The companies are sponsoring The Recording Academy Producers & Engineers Wing's third annual GRAMMY Week event, reports David Davies. Scheduled to take place tomorrow (January 27) - shortly before the 52nd Annual GRAMMY Awards is held on January 31 - the gathering honours excellence in music and audio production.

Focusrite, ACM and Audio Network honoured with Queen's Awards

UK: The Queen's Award for Enterprise - an annual honour that recognises business success - has been awarded to five British-based companies with interests in music, music technology and/or professional audio. Focusrite, the Academy of Contemporary Music and Audio Network are among those to have been acknowledged in the Innovation category this year, writes David Davies.

AMG to open new venue this autumn

UK: Leeds Academy will be the Academy Music Group's 13th live music venue, writes David Davies. Situated on the site of the former Town and Country Club at 55 Cookridge Street, the venue will occupy a restored Grade I listed building and offer a maximum main room capacity of 2,300 (1,800 stalls, 500 balcony) for live music and club events. Elbow, Hot Chip, Goldfrapp, Mercury Rev and Billy Bragg are among the acts set to play the venue during its first two months of operation.

APRS to honour Alan Parsons and Glyn Johns at 60th anniversary lunch

UK: The APRS (Association of Professional Recording Services) has announced that it is to honour a number of renowned individuals with Sound Fellowships in recognition of their contributions to "the art, science and industry of sound recording". Island Records founder Chris Blackwell and producer/engineer/performer Alan Parsons will be among the distinguished figures honoured at the APRS' 60th anniversary lunch this Thursday (September 27th), writes David Davies.