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WESTWARD HO:
L.A. TO L.A.

L.A. Reid is said to be moving to Los Angeles to start an official Epic West Coast office for Sony.

Top brass at Sony Music have been mulling the idea of establishing a beachhead in Los Angeles since Jimmy Iovine left Interscope two years ago. Iovine had long been the dominant executive in the market with his track record for hitting massive home runs, and his high-appealing lifestyle of Beverly Hills mansions and yachts.

The landscape has three major labels currently operating here—Warners, IGA and Capitol Music Group—none operated by Sony. When Reid joined Sony in the summer of 2011—the move coincided with him joining Fox’s The X Factor—the label was bereft of artists; it needed to be built from the ground up.

 Since leaving The X Factor after the 2012 season, he has resurrected Epic with a flurry of new acts—Meghan Trainor, Fifth Harmony, Future— and is currently on a hot streak with DJ Khaled, Kongos, Kent Jones, Zara Larsson, Trainor’s second album and Fifth Harmony.

The emergence of Epic in hip hop with Future, French Montana and DJ Khaled comes at a time when hip hop is dominating streaming platforms, adding to the right-time, right-place feeling about the move.

The Sony hierarchy, rightfully so, feels that L.A. is the creative center of the music business and that they should have a bigger presence here. Questions remain unanswered about who else may make the move, but it's believed that for the most part, Epic will continue to be based in NYC.

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