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"Will Ames now step up and take a more active role, considering Nicoli’s lack of experience in music? And if Nicoli actually intends to name Ames as the new head of EMI Music, what is the amount of time deemed proper by English etiquette before he’s formally named as Levy’s replacement—and Nicoli’s last hope?"
—-I.B. Bad in January '07
A BRIEF HISTORY OF ROGER AMES
Ames is Back at EMI Where His Career Started 32 Years Ago
He started at EMI, and now he's back again.

Back in January, I.B. Bad himself predicted that Roger Ames, then an EMI consultant, would be given a more prominent role when Eric Nicoli put himself in charge after terminating Alain Levy, who had butted heads with Ames back when they were at PolyGram together, and David Munns.

Ames became an EMI consultant soon after being relieved of his duties as Warner Music Group chief in 2004 less than a year after Edgar Bronfman and a team of equity players acquired WMG from Time Warner in March 2003 for $2.6 billion. 

Asked Bad when Nicoli made his move earlier this year: “Will Ames now step up and take a more active role, considering Nicoli’s lack of experience in music? And if Nicoli actually intends to name Ames as the new head of EMI Music, what is the amount of time deemed proper by English etiquette before he’s formally named as Levy’s replacement—and Nicoli’s last hope?”

Now we know the answer: it took a little less than four months. When Ames left his post at WMG in 2004, he entered a non-exclusive consulting agreement with Time Warner before joining EMI as a consultant for their entire world operation in March 2005.

Ames’ first crossed paths with Bronfman when the Seagram heir bought PolyGram for $10.4 billion in June 1998, leaving Ames without a job when the deal closed the following January ‘99. The 32-year vet of the biz was named President of Warner Music International shortly afterward, taking his former London label with him and selling it to WMG in the process. By mid-August, the Time Warner board had named him Chairman/CEO of the music group, succeeding Bob Daly and Terry Semel, who had resigned their posts as co-chiefs of both Warner Bros. and WMG.

Born and educated in Trinidad in the West Indies, Ames started his career in the music industry with EMI U.K. in 1975. In 1979, he joined PolyGram U.K. in the A&R department of the Phonogram label. He moved over to the newly restarted London Records in 1983 as General Manager, later rising to Managing Director. In January 1991, Ames was appointed Chairman and CEO of PolyGram U.K., responsible for all of the company's activities in Great Britain, including its record labels, film distribution, music publishing and music clubs. And then came Bronfman.

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