Verve Music Group Expands Into Burgeoning Adult-Contemporary Market:

Re-Launches Famed 'Forecast' Label

Initial Signings Include Susan Tedeschi, Rhett Miller, Teddy Thompson, and

Brazilian Girls

Jan 21, 2005, 00:00 ET from Verve Music Group

    NEW YORK, Jan. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- The Verve Music Group, a subsidiary of
 Universal Music Group, the world's leading music company, has expanded into
 the burgeoning and often overlooked Adult Contemporary market with the
 re-launching of the famed Forecast label, the original home to many of music's
 most acclaimed singer songwriters.  The announcement was made today by Ron
 Goldstein, President and CEO of the Verve Music Group.
     Formed in 1967, Forecast (originally Folkways) burst onto the scene by
 introducing some of the era's most important artists to the record-buying
 public, including Laura Nyro, Tim Hardin, Richie Havens, The Blues Project,
 and the Velvet Underground, among others.
     Over the last several years, the adult contemporary music market has
 grown, with increasing record sales and a nation-wide radio audience that has
 swelled to over 20 million (source: BDS).
     "Our expansion into adult contemporary is a natural evolution for us,"
 stated Goldstein.  "Verve has enjoyed great crossover success with jazz
 projects including Diana Krall, Linda Ronstadt, Aaron Neville, Lizz Wright and
 most recently, Jamie Cullum and with the innovative 'Verve Remixed' albums.
 It is our belief that the audience that is buying music by these artists as
 well as by Norah Jones, Josh Groban and Rod Stewart is hungry for more.  Our
 staff is focused and well-positioned to take advantage of traditional and
 non-traditional marketing opportunities.  We are excited about the re-launch
 of Forecast and we look forward to continuing the original Verve label's
 tradition of fostering great talent at a time when music lovers are
 re-embracing the true artistry of the genre in droves."
     The Verve Forecast imprint will be home to all non-jazz artists signed
 under the Verve Music Group umbrella.
     Blues rocker Susan Tedeschi, Rhett Miller of the Old 97s, Teddy Thompson,
 Sacramento-based singer/songwriter Jackie Greene and Chiara Civello are among
 the first acts to sign to the newly-reactivated label.  Three-time
 GRAMMY(R)-nominee Tedeschi released a trio of critically-acclaimed and
 commercially successful albums and is preparing to begin work on her Verve
 Forecast debut.  Tedeschi is managed by Macklam/Feldman Management (Diana
 Krall, Norah Jones, Elvis Costello, Joni Mitchell).  Brazilian Girls are a
 quartet with deep roots in New York's burgeoning Lower East Side music
 community.  The group, which draws on electro, dub, pop, punk and dance music
 to create their eclectic sound, was recently described by The New York Times'
 Jon Pareles as "catchy, musically ambitious, proudly theatrical" and
 "irresistible."  Brazilian Girls' eponymous debut album will be released in
 February of 2005.  The group is managed by David Whitehead, who counts David
 Byrne and David Bowie among his other clients.
     In addition to Verve Forecast, the Verve Music Group is comprised of the
 premier jazz label Verve, whose roster includes legends such as Herbie Hancock
 and Wayne Shorter as well as rising stars Roy Hargrove and Regina Carter;
 vocalists Diana Krall, Natalie Cole, Shirley Horn and Lizz Wright; GRP
 Records, which houses a stellar roster of contemporary instrumental artists,
 and Impulse!, the catalog label and home to John Coltrane.
     About Universal Music Group
     Universal Music Group is the world's leading music company with
 wholly-owned record operations or licensees in 71 countries.  Its businesses
 also include Universal Music Publishing Group, one of the industry's largest
 global music publishing operations.
     Universal Music Group consists of record labels Decca Record Company,
 Deutsche Grammophon, DreamWorks Records, Interscope Geffen A&M Records, Island
 Def Jam Music Group, Lost Highway Records, MCA Nashville, Mercury Records,
 Mercury Nashville, Philips, Polydor, Universal Music Latino, Universal Motown
 Records Group, and Verve Music Group as well as a multitude of record labels
 owned or distributed by its record company subsidiaries around the world.  The
 Universal Music Group owns the most extensive catalog of music in the
 industry, which is marketed through two distinct divisions, Universal Music
 Enterprises (in the U.S.) and Strategic Marketing and Commercial Affairs
 (outside the U.S.).  Universal Music Group also includes eLabs, a new media
 and technology division.
     Universal Music Group is a unit of Vivendi Universal, a global media and
 communications company.

SOURCE Verve Music Group