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ROSENBERG TO EXIT DEF JAM; HARLESTON INTERIM CHIEF; MCNAIR COMES ABOARD

UMG confirms that Paul Rosenberg will exit as head of Def Jam to launch new label venture with the group, Goliath Records, and focus on his management of Eminem. Jeff Harleston will serve as interim head of the label until a permanent successor to Rosenberg is appointed; Harleston, who accrued label-operations experience at labels including MCA and Geffen, will continue in his role as UMG's General Counsel and EVP of Biz & Legal Affairs.

UMG has also announced that SVP of A&R Naim McNair will take the same title at Def Jam while retaining his post at UMG central. McNair has worked with Interscope, Republic, MCA and Warner Bros. and served as a consultant for Epic and Top Dawg Entertainment.

The company further noted that Rosenberg will remain the head of Em's imprint, Shady Records. The exec expressed his appreciation to UMG topper Sir Lucian Grainge for the opportunity. "Lucian offered me a dream opportunity to serve at the helm of Def Jam," reads his quote. "The experience I had running one of the greatest, most storied record companies of the modern era was incredible. I will remain forever grateful. I’ve learned a great deal, but one of the most important things I learned is that my ability to multi-task is not without limits. My new relationship with UMG gives me the ability to continue to sign and develop talent in a more focused and streamlined way, while still dedicating the time necessary to fulfill my management duties and foster the many entrepreneurial endeavors connected with Eminem."

Rosenberg's management plate has been particularly full of late, with Eminem dropping no fewer than three Shady/Aftermath/Interscope albums in three years. His management of the megastar rapper, whom he met in 1996, has guided one of the most talked-about careers in modern biz history, including Diamond-certified albums, stratsopheric hits, multiple Grammys and an Oscar-winning box-office giant in the film 8 Mile, which he co-produced. He was announced as Def Jam chief in 2017; during his tenure he's notched #1 albums from Kanye West, Logic and Justin Bieber.

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