A&M RECORDS EUROPE HISTORY
A&M RECORDS HISTORY 1960s
A&M Records was established in the United States in 1962. Its first recordings were licensed individually in Europe.
A&M recordings had foreign license representation by Decca in Scandanavia, Holland, Germany and Belgium; Pye in the United Kingdom; Pathe Marconi in France, and Compagnia Generale del Disco (CGD) in Italy.
One of the early successful singles was Lucille Starr's "The French Song" which sold 150,000 copies in Holland.
Fonier in Belgium released a promotional record by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass to support their tour.
Hispavox used A&M's own label on recordings in Spain.
Pathe Marconi released a promotional album pressed on yellow vinyl that featured the Tijuana Brass, Baja Marimba Band, Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66, Claudine Longet and the Sandpipers. The company also released extended play recordings by the Baja Marimba Band and Claudine Longet.
In February, A&M renewed its distribution agreement with Hispavox in Spain. In Finland, Finlevy distributed A&M Records. Among the first albums it promoted was A Taste of A&M Records.
A&M Records' first staff presence in Europe came soon after the establishment of A&M Records, Ltd. in London. Larry Yaskiel was named the European director and began work on September 1 in London. Yaskiel and eight staff coordinated record promotions with Pye Records (England), Deutsche Grammophon (Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, Belgium, Holland and Luxembourg), CGD (Italy), and Hispavox (Spain). The staff would also assign new songwriters to Almo Music, Irving Music or Rondor Music and provide media promotions and coordinate personal appearances by artists.
In July, Larry Yaskiel was appointed as the first European director of A&M Records.
A&M RECORDS HISTORY 1970s
Effective August 1, Ariola-Eurodisc GMBH of Munich, Germany, began representing A&M Records in Germany, Switzerland and Austria. Ariola-Eurodisc-Benelux N.V. acquired the rights for the Benelux territories. Deutsche Grammophon had been the representative in Benelux and continued to service Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, Belgium, Holland, Luxembourg, Scandinavia, Singapore and Hong Kong. RCA distributed A&M Records in France.
As of September 1, European director Larry Yaskiel and eight staff for A&M Europe were based in A&M's London office. Yaskiel also had responsibility for assigning publishing to Almo, Irving or Rondor Music. The staff coordinated with its distributors, and Hispavox (Spain). Representaiton in Italy shifted from Compagnia Generale del Disco (CGD) to Dischi Ricordi,
On October 1, Dishi Recordi began distributing A&M in Italy. The first albums under the deal were by Quincy Jones, Carpenters, Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66, Humble Pie and Joe Cocker's Mad Dogs and Englishmen. Karrussell was the distributor in Sweden.
A&M named its European coordinator, Michel De May who was based in France and whose work emphasized A&M in the French market.
The licensees for tapes and discs were:
Iron Curtain countries--Ariola
France--RCA Italiana plus some tapes from Precision Tapes
Great Britain-- Precision Tapes (duplication and marketing)
Holland--Ariola (imports tapes from Precision Tapes)
Italy--Dischi Ricordi (manufacturing)
Scandanavia--tapes imported from Precision Tapes in Britain
On August 1, Sonet began distributing A&M Records in Sweden.
In June, Polydor replaced Symphoa as A&M's distributor in Ireland.
Inelco was the distributor in Belgium.
In Spain, Ariola-Eurodisc S.A. began distribution of A&M.
Marcus Bicknell was named European managing direcctor to oversee all European operations.
A formal A&M Records Europe office was established in 1977 in Paris, France. The Paris office was the European headquarters office as well as the French promotion office. In late April, A&M announced that CBS International would be its distributor throughout continental Europe. The A&M Records Europe office was to increase and supplement the distribution arrangement. Bill Stern was appointed European marketing research and public relations consultant. He told Billboard, "The degree in which A&M is known in Europe is by the promotion of its product....It's a matter of a known label establishing itself as a more international one."
A&M created promotion offices in Hiversum, Holland and Frankfurt, Germany. Both offices were located within the CBS offices.
Among staff changes in Europe:
Cathy Oudemans was appointed promotions director;
Arlane Sorpes was the radio promotion assistant in France;
Olivia Demachy became the press promotion assistant in France;
Christina Mastrogiovanni was production coordiator.
CBS became A&M Records distributor in Europe.
In August, Derek Green was promoted to senior vice president and director of artist development and talent acquisition.
Claude Pupin became the promotion director in France.
Anne Hammond became the promotion assistant for Europe.
A&M RECORDS HISTORY 1980s
A&M Europe's headquarters moved to 95 Boulevard Murat, Paris France.
Effective April 1 A&M licensing for continental Europe moved from CBS to Polydor International as Polydor outbid CBS. Polydor would manufacture, market and distribute A&M product in all European countries except Britain.
A&M RECORDS HISTORY 1990s
A&M RECORDS HISTORY 2000s
A&M RECORDS EUROPE STAFF
Thank you to all of the very talented members of the A&M Records Europe family.
If your name does not appear in the list below, please send an e-mail and let us include you in the credits. Photos for the A&M Family Photo Album are always welcome! When you write, please include the years you worked at A&M and your job title or the name of the department where you worked. This information is also used to validate your registration for our A&M artists and staff contact list.
|A - F||G - M||N - Z|
| Marcus Bicknell
Bert de Ruiter
| Anne Hammond
Michel de May
| Cathy Oudemans |
J. R. Regisford
Ariane "Honey" Sorpes
Fran van Houten
A&M RECORDS EUROPE ADS
1965: A&M to Blanket Europe. Billboard. December 18, 1965.
1967: From the Music Capitals of the World (New York). Mike Gross. Billboard, June 17, 1967.
1969: A&M Keys European Attack to Three Goals. Billboard. August 23, 1969.
1970: Ariola Pack With A&M and Ariola-Eurodisc Pact with A&M. Billboard, July 25, 1970, 60.
1976: Bicknell Names European Mgr., A&M Records. Billboard. December 25, 1976.
1977: Stern Moves to Bolster A&M European Marketing. Ed Harrison. Billboard, May 7, 1977.
1978: A&M Juggles Paris Staff to Improve Links. Cashbox. October 21, 1978.
1979: Green Promoted to Sr. VP Post at A&M Records. Cashbox, September 8, 1979.
1982: New Headquarters for A&M Europe. Billboard. June 26, 1982.
1985: A&M Records Ends Pact with CBS Subsidiary: Polydor Will Handle European Distribution. William Knoedelseder, Jr. Los Angeles Times January 30, 1985.
A&M Records' 10th and 15th anniversary books
Billboard magazine articles
A&M Records and Rondor Music International employees