While the elimination of Maverick's in-house promotion department is hardly trivial, today's cuts were not as extensive as many had anticipated. Insiders had expected the label to be pared back to little more than an A&R source.

MAVERICK CORALLED

Expected Downsizing Claims Label's Promo Staff
The expected downsizing of Madonna's Maverick Records began today, with 12 of the label's 14 promotion staffers being let go, including highly respected head of Promotion Ted Volk. Promotion duties for Maverick product are expected to be assumed by Warner Bros. and Reprise; according to sources, the next Michelle Branch single will be worked by Warner Bros., while the forthcoming Alanis Morissette will be handled by Reprise.

While the elimination of Maverick's in-house promotion department is hardly trivial, today's cuts were not as extensive as many had anticipated. Insiders had expected the label to be pared back to little more than an A&R source helmed by Madonna partners Ronnie Dashev and Guy Oseary.

As Warner Music Group boss Roger Ames continues to restructure operations, the move toward shared services will likely result in similar cuts among other WMG-owned labels and joint ventures. Ames, along with Warner Bros. chief Tom Whalley, is said to believe that much of what Maverick does can be accomplished by the Warner and Reprise staffs, representing an opportunity for cost savings.

Maverick was first funded by Warner Bros. as a joint venture in 1992 and soon grew into a powerhouse, boasting such acts as Alanis Morissette, Deftones, Prodigy, Candlebox and more recently, singer-songwriter Michelle Branch and rockers Tantric.

Maverick has enjoyed some recent success with albums by Branch, now over 250k, and Tantric, whose album is approaching 500k in sales. The label's biggest all-time seller, of course, is Morissette's 1995 debut, Jagged Little Pill, which sold 28 million worldwide, 13.9 million in the States. Her follow-up, '98's Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie, sold 7 million worldwide. The singer-songwriter's highly anticipated new album, Under Rug Swept, is slated for release on Feb. 26.

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