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"He is a multidimensional executive and entrepreneur, who possesses a deep love of music and an incredibly successful track record in building the careers of premiere artists."
—-Lucian Grainge on Barry Weiss
WEISS IN AT IDJ, UNIVERSAL MOTOWN REPUBLIC GROUP
Veteran RCA/Jive Exec Named Chairman/CEO
That was quick.

Moving swiftly to fill the vacancy left by Antonio "L.A." Reid's exit to X Factor yesterday, UMG Chairman/CEO Lucian Grainge has named Barry Weiss Chairman/CEO of Island Def Jam and Universal Motown Republic Group.

As a result, he will have executives like Monte and Avery Lipman, Sylvia Rhone and IDJ President Steve Bartels reporting to him.

Commented Grainge in an internal memo: "Throughout his career, Barry achieved that rare and delicate balance between managing artistic needs and the realities of the business. He is a multidimensional executive and entrepreneur, who possesses a deep love of music and an incredibly successful track record in building the careers of premiere artists. He has the talent and commitment to help take these two great companies to new heights."

Weiss was named Chairman/CEO for RCA/Jive Label Group in 2008, where his artist roster included Justin Timberlake, Jamie Foxx, Kelly Clarkson, Britney Spears, Kings of Leon, Jennifer Hudson, KeSha and The Strokes.

Insiders credit his longevity to a "steady yet flexible management style"—his way of balancing the bottom line with creative freedom. 

The Woodbury, Long Island, native is a second-generation record man, the son of the late Hy Weiss, founder of '50s doo-wop indie Old Town Records. Hy named yet another label, Barry Records, after his son, who would hang around his father’s midtown office, where he was first introduced to artists like Simon & Garfunkel, Isaac Hayes and Tiny Tim

While still a student at Cornell, Weiss naturally gravitated toward the music business. His first official job in the record business was doing college and rock radio promotions for Infinity Records, and he had a special phone line installed in his dorm room that enabled him to get on the phone with rdio PDs all over the country after classes. He also worked for Ariola America, a subsidiary of Arista Records, whose roster included such artists as Herman Brood and Krokus

In 1982, Weiss joined the newly launched Jive Records as manager of artist development, shepherding the releases of A Flock of Seagulls and Billy Ocean. Later, he was an integral part of establishing Jive as a home for burgeoning rap stars such as A Tribe Called Quest, DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince and KRS-One.

In the middle of his career, Weiss took off time to get his MBA at N.,Y.U. and was appointed president of Jive/Silvertone/Verity Records in 1995. In the mid-'90s, Jive evolved as a veritable pop powerhouse, with releases from Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears and NSYNC. In 1998, Jive also extended into the rock arena with Volcano Records, whose roster includes 311 and Tool.

When BMG acquired the rest of Clive Calder's Zomba Label Group in 2002 for a reported $3 billion price tag, Weiss was rewarded for the windfall by being named President. 

Weiss also is a active supporter of several charities and organizations, with an eye toward medical research and education. He sits on the Mount Sinai Medical Center’s Surgery Advisory Board and is a frequent guest lecturer at Cornell University’s Department of Applied Economics and Management. The UJA-Federation of New York honored him with the 2009 Music Visionary of the Year Award and The Young Women’s Leadership Network honored him at their 3rd annual (Em)Power Breakfast for his support and commitment to their organization in September 2009.

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