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Epic Records is an American
record label A record label, or record company, is a brand A brand is a name, term, design, symbol or any other feature that identifies one seller's good or service as distinct from those of other sellers. Brands are used in business, marketing, and ad ...
owned by
Sony Music Entertainment Sony Music Entertainment (SME), also known as just Sony Music, is an American multinational music Music is the art of arranging sounds in time through the elements of melody, harmony, rhythm, and timbre. It is one of the universal cultu ...
, a subsidiary of
Sony Corporation of America Sony Corporation of America (SONAM), based in New York City, is a subsidiary of the Japanese conglomerate Sony, Sony Group Corporation. It serves as the company's US headquarters, and manages the company's US-based businesses. Sony's principal ...
, the North American division of Japanese
conglomerate Conglomerate or conglomeration may refer to: * Conglomerate (company) * Conglomerate (geology) * Conglomerate (mathematics) In popular culture: * The Conglomerate (American group), a production crew and musical group founded by Busta Rhymes ** Con ...
Sony , commonly known as Sony and stylized as SONY, is a Japanese multinational Multinational may refer to: * Multinational corporation, a corporate organization operating in multiple countries * Multinational force, a military body from mult ...

Sony
. The label was founded predominantly as a
jazz Jazz is a music genre A music genre is a conventional category that identifies some pieces of music Music is the of arranging s in time through the of melody, harmony, rhythm, and timbre. It is one of the aspects of all human s ...
and
classical music Classical music generally refers to the formal musical tradition of the Western world The Western world, also known as the West, refers to various s, s and , depending on the context, most often consisting of the majority of , , and ...

classical music
label in 1953, but later expanded its scope to include a more diverse range of genres, including
pop Pop or POP may refer to: Places * Gregorio Luperón International Airport (IATA code POP), Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic * Pop, a tributary of the river Jijia in eastern Romania * Poppleton railway station (station code), York, England People ...
,
R&B Rhythm and blues, often abbreviated as R&B, is a genre of popular music that originated in African-American communities in the 1940s. The term was originally used by record companies to describe recordings marketed predominantly to urban African ...
,
rock Rock most often refers to: * Rock (geology) A rock is any naturally occurring solid mass or aggregate of minerals or mineraloid matter. It is categorized by the minerals included, its Chemical compound, chemical composition and the way in w ...
, and
hip hop Hip hop or hip-hop is a culture Culture () is an umbrella term which encompasses the social behavior and Norm (social), norms found in human Society, societies, as well as the knowledge, beliefs, arts, laws, Social norm, customs, capabil ...
.


History


Beginnings

Epic Records was launched in 1953 by the
Columbia Records Columbia Records is an American record label A record label, or record company, is a brand A brand is a name, term, design, symbol or any other feature that identifies one seller's good or service as distinct from those of other seller ...

Columbia Records
unit of
CBS CBS is an American American(s) may refer to: * American, something of, from, or related to the United States of America, commonly known as the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S ...

CBS
, for the purpose of marketing
jazz Jazz is a music genre A music genre is a conventional category that identifies some pieces of music Music is the of arranging s in time through the of melody, harmony, rhythm, and timbre. It is one of the aspects of all human s ...
,
pop Pop or POP may refer to: Places * Gregorio Luperón International Airport (IATA code POP), Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic * Pop, a tributary of the river Jijia in eastern Romania * Poppleton railway station (station code), York, England People ...
, and
classical music Classical music generally refers to the formal musical tradition of the Western world The Western world, also known as the West, refers to various s, s and , depending on the context, most often consisting of the majority of , , and ...
that did not fit the theme of its more mainstream Columbia Records label. Initial classical music releases were from
Philips Records Koninklijke Philips N.V. (in Dutch Dutch commonly refers to: * Something of, from, or related to the Netherlands * Dutch people () * Dutch language () *Dutch language , spoken in Belgium (also referred as ''flemish'') Dutch may also refer to ...
which distributed Columbia product in Europe. Pop talent on co-owned
Okeh Records Okeh Records () is an American record label founded by the Otto Heinemann Phonograph Corporation, a phonograph supplier established in 1916, which branched out into phonograph records in 1918. The name was spelled "OkeH" from the initials of Ott ...
were transferred to Epic which made Okeh a
rhythm and blues Rhythm and blues, often abbreviated as R&B or R'n'B, is a genre of popular music Popular music is music with wide appeal that is typically distributed to large audiences through the music industry. These forms and styles can be enjoyed and ...
label. Epic's bright-yellow, black, and blue logo became a familiar trademark for many jazz and classical releases. This has included such notables as the
Berlin Philharmonic The Berlin Philharmonic (german: Berliner Philharmoniker, links=no, italic=no) is a German orchestra based in Berlin which is consistently ranked in the top handful of orchestras in the world, distinguished amongst peers for its virtuosity and co ...
,
Charles Rosen Charles Welles Rosen (May 5, 1927December 9, 2012) was an American pianist and writer on music. He is remembered for his career as a concert pianist, for his recordings, and for his many writings, notable among them the book ''The Classical Styl ...

Charles Rosen
, the
Juilliard String Quartet The Juilliard String Quartet is a classical music Classical music generally refers to the formal musical tradition of the Western world The Western world, also known as the West, refers to various regions, nations and state (polity), ...

Juilliard String Quartet
,
Antal Doráti Antal Doráti (, , ; 9 April 1906 – 13 November 1988) was a HungarianHungarian may refer to: * Hungary, a country in Central Europe * Kingdom of Hungary, state of Hungary, existing between 1000 and 1946 * Hungarians, ethnic groups in Hungary ...
conducting the Hague Philharmonic, and
George Szell George Szell George Szell (; June 7, 1897 – July 30, 1970), originally György Széll, György Endre Szél, or Georg Szell, was a HungarianHungarian may refer to: * Hungary, a country in Central Europe * Kingdom of Hungary, state of Hungary ...

George Szell
conducting the
Cleveland Orchestra The Cleveland Orchestra, based in Cleveland Cleveland ( ), officially the City of Cleveland, is a city in the United States, U.S. U.S. state, state of Ohio, and the county seat of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, Cuyahoga County. It is located along t ...
.


Expansion of genres and mainstream success

By 1960, Epic became better known for its signing of newer, fledgling acts. By the end of the 1960s, Epic earned its first gold records and had evolved into a formidable hit-making force in
rock and roll Rock and roll (often written as rock & roll, rock 'n' roll, or rock 'n roll) is a genre of popular music Popular music is music with wide appeal that is typically distributed to large audiences through the music industry. These forms and st ...

rock and roll
,
R&B Rhythm and blues, often abbreviated as R&B, is a genre of popular music that originated in African-American communities in the 1940s. The term was originally used by record companies to describe recordings marketed predominantly to urban African ...
and
country music Country (also called country and western) is a genre of popular music Popular music is music with wide appeal that is typically distributed to large audiences through the music industry. These forms and styles can be enjoyed and performed b ...

country music
. Among its many acts, it included
Roy Hamilton Roy Hamilton (April 16, 1929 – July 20, 1969) was an American singer. By combining semi-classical technique with traditional black gospel Traditional black gospel is music that is written to express either personal or a communal belief regard ...
,
Bobby Vinton Stanley Robert "Bobby" Vinton (born April 16, 1935) is an American singer, songwriter, and actor. As a teen idol A teen idol is a celebrity with a large teenage fan base. Teen idols are generally young but not necessarily teenaged. Often tee ...
,
the Dave Clark Five The Dave Clark Five, often called The DC5, were an English rock and roll Rock and roll (often written as rock & roll, rock 'n' roll, or rock 'n roll) is a genre of popular music Popular music is music with wide appeal that is typically di ...
,
the Hollies The Hollies are a British pop rock Pop rock (also typeset as pop/rock) is rock music with a greater emphasis on professional songwriting and recording craft, and less emphasis on attitude. Originating in the late 1950s as an alternative t ...

the Hollies
,
Tammy Wynette Tammy Wynette (born Virginia Wynette Pugh; May 5, 1942 – April 6, 1998) was an American country music singer-songwriter and musician and was one of country music's best-known artists and biggest-selling female singers during the late 1960s and f ...

Tammy Wynette
,
Donovan Donovan Phillips Leitch (born 10 May 1946) is a Scottish singer, songwriter and guitarist. He developed an eclectic and distinctive style that blended folk, jazz Jazz is a music genre that originated in the African-American communities ...

Donovan
,
the Yardbirds The Yardbirds are an English rock Rock most often refers to: * Rock (geology) A rock is any naturally occurring solid mass or aggregate of minerals or mineraloid matter. It is categorized by the minerals included, its Chemical compoun ...
,
Lulu Lulu may refer to: Companies * LuLu, an early automobile manufacturer * Lulu.com, an online e-books and print self-publishing platform, distributor, and retailer * Lulu Hypermarket, a retail chain in Asia * Lululemon Athletica or simply Lulu, a Br ...
,
July July is the seventh month of the year (between June June is the sixth month of the year in the Julian calendar, Julian and Gregorian calendars, the second of four months to have a length of 30 days, and the third of five months to have a ...
,
Helen Shapiro Helen Kate Shapiro (born 28 September 1946) is a British pop singer, jazz singer, and actress. She is best known for her two 1961 UK chart toppers, " You Don't Know" and "Walkin' Back to Happiness", both recorded when she was just fourteen yea ...
, and
Jeff Beck Geoffrey Arnold Beck (born 24 June 1944) is an English rock guitarist. He is one of the three noted guitarists to have played with the Yardbirds (the other two being Eric Clapton Eric Patrick Clapton, (born 1945) is an English Rock mu ...

Jeff Beck
. Several of the British artists on the Epic roster during the 1960s were the result of CBS's Epic/
Okeh Okeh Records () is an American record label founded by the Otto Heinemann Phonograph Corporation, a phonograph supplier established in 1916, which branched out into phonograph records in 1918. The name was spelled "OkeH" from the initials of Ott ...
units' international distribution deal with
EMI EMI Group Limited (originally an initialism for Electric and Musical Industries, also referred to as EMI Records Ltd. or simply EMI) was a British transnational conglomerate founded in March 1931 in London. At the time of its break-up in 2012 ...
; Epic recordings were issued by EMI on the
Columbia Columbia may refer to: * Columbia (personification), the historical female national personification of the United States, and a poetic name for the Americas Places North America Natural features * Columbia Plateau, a geologic and geographic regio ...
label. Epic was involved in a notable "trade" of artists.
Graham Nash Graham William Nash (born 2 February 1942) is a British-American singer-songwriter and musician. Nash is known for his light tenor voice and for his songwriting contributions as a member of the English pop/rock group the Hollies The Hol ...

Graham Nash
was signed to Epic because of his membership in The Hollies. When the newly formed
Crosby, Stills & Nash Crosby, Stills & Nash (CSN) is a folk rock Supergroup (music), supergroup made up of American singer-songwriters David Crosby and Stephen Stills, and English singer-songwriter Graham Nash. When joined by Canadian singer-songwriter Neil Young as ...
wanted to sign with
Atlantic Records Atlantic Recording Corporation (simply known as Atlantic Records) is an American record label A record label, or record company, is a brand A brand is a name, term, design, symbol or any other feature that identifies one seller's good ...
,
Ahmet Ertegun Ahmet Ertegun (, Turkish spelling: Ahmet Ertegün (); – December 14, 2006) was a Turkish-American businessman, songwriter and philanthropist. Ertegun was the co-founder and president of Atlantic Records. He discovered and championed many lead ...
worked out a deal with
Clive Davis Clive Jay Davis (born April 4, 1932) is an American record producer, A&R executive, music industry executive, and lawyer A lawyer or attorney is a person who practices law, as an advocate, attorney at lawAttorney at law or attorney-at- ...

Clive Davis
whereby
Richie Furay Paul Richard Furay (born May 9, 1944) is an American singer, songwriter, and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame member. He is best known for forming the band (music), bands Buffalo Springfield with Stephen Stills, Neil Young, Bruce Palmer, and Dewey Marti ...

Richie Furay
's new band
Poco Poco is an American country rock Country rock is a subgenre of , formed from the fusion of and . It was developed by rock musicians who began to record country-flavored records in the late 1960s and early 1970s. These musicians recorded ro ...
(having signed with Atlantic due to Furay's contract from being in
Buffalo Springfield Buffalo Springfield was an American rock band formed in Los Angeles, California Los Angeles (; es, Los Ángeles; "The Angels"), officially the City of Los Angeles and often abbreviated as L.A., is the largest city in California ...
) would sign with Epic. Epic's commercial success continued to grow in the 1970s with releases from
ABBA ABBA ( , ) are a Swedish pop group formed in Stockholm Stockholm is the Capital city, capital of Sweden. It has the most populous urban area in Sweden as well as in Scandinavia. 1 million people live in the Stockholm Municipality, mun ...

ABBA
(in the UK),
Boston Boston (, ), officially the City of Boston, is the capital city, capital and List of municipalities in Massachusetts, most populous city of the Commonwealth (U.S. state), Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the United States and 21st List of Unit ...
,
Cheap Trick Cheap Trick is an American rock Rock most often refers to: * Rock (geology) A rock is any naturally occurring solid mass or aggregate of minerals or mineraloid matter. It is categorized by the minerals included, its Chemical compound, ...

Cheap Trick
,
the Clash The Clash were an English rock music, rock band formed in London in 1976 who were key players in the original wave of British punk rock. Billed as "The Only Band That Matters", they also contributed to the and new wave music, new wave movemen ...
,
Charlie Daniels Charles Edward Daniels (October 28, 1936 – July 6, 2020) was an American singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist known for his contributions to Southern rock, country, and bluegrass music. He was best known for his number-one cou ...
, Gabriel,
Heart The heart is a muscular MUSCULAR (DS-200B), located in the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain,Usage is mixed. The Guardian' and Telegraph' use ...
, Heatwave,
the Isley Brothers The Isley Brothers () are an American musical group originally from Cincinnati, Ohio Cincinnati ( ) is a city in the U.S. state of Ohio and the county seat of Hamilton County, Ohio, Hamilton County. Settled in 1788, the city is located at ...

the Isley Brothers
,
the Jacksons The Jackson 5 (sometimes stylized as the Jackson 5ive, later known as the Jacksons) are an American pop band A rock band or pop band is a small musical ensemble that performs rock music, pop music ...
,
George Jones George Glenn Jones (September 12, 1931 – April 26, 2013) was an American musician, singer, and songwriter. He achieved international fame for his long list of hit records, including his best-known song "He Stopped Loving Her Today", as well ...

George Jones
,
Labelle
Labelle
,
Meat Loaf Michael Lee Aday (born Marvin Lee Aday, September 27, 1947), better known as Meat Loaf, is an American singer and actor. He is noted for his powerful, wide-ranging voice and theatrical live shows. His ''Bat Out of Hell'' trilogy—''Bat Out of H ...

Meat Loaf
,
Johnny Nash John Lester “Johnny” Nash Jr. (August 19, 1940October 6, 2020) was an American singer-songwriter, best known in the United States for his 1972 hit "I Can See Clearly Now". Primarily a reggae and pop singer, he was one of the first non-Jama ...

Johnny Nash
,
Ted Nugent Theodore Anthony Nugent (; born December 13, 1948) is an American singer, songwriter, guitarist and activist. He initially gained fame as the lead guitarist and occasional lead vocalist of The Amboy Dukes, a band formed in 1963 that played ps ...

Ted Nugent
,
REO Speedwagon REO Speedwagon (originally stylized as R.E.O. Speedwagon) is an American rock Rock most often refers to: * Rock (geology) A rock is any naturally occurring solid mass or aggregate of minerals or mineraloid matter. It is categorized by ...

REO Speedwagon
,
Minnie Riperton Minnie Julia Riperton Rudolph (November 8, 1947 – July 12, 1979) was an American singer-songwriter best known for her 1975 single " Lovin' You" and her four octave D3 to F#7 coloratura soprano range. She is also widely known for her use ...
, Pegasus,
Charlie Rich Charles Allan Rich (December 14, 1932July 25, 1995) was an American country music singer, songwriter, and musician. His eclectic style of music was often difficult to classify, encompassing the rockabilly, jazz, blues, country music, country, so ...
,
Sly & the Family Stone Sly and the Family Stone was an American band from San Francisco. Active from 1966 to 1983, it was pivotal in the development of funk, soul music, soul, rock music, rock, and psychedelic music. Its core line-up was led by singer-songwriter, recor ...
,
Steve Vai Steven Siro Vai (; born June 6, 1960) is an American guitarist, composer, singer, songwriter, and producer. A three-time Grammy Award The Grammy Award (stylized as GRAMMY, originally called Gramophone Award), or just Grammy, is an award p ...

Steve Vai
, and
Edgar Winter Edgar Holland Winter (born December 28, 1946) is an American musician, songwriter, and record producer. He is known for being a multi-instrumentalist—keyboardist, guitarist, saxophonist and percussionist—as well as a singer. His success peaked ...

Edgar Winter
. Also contributing to the label's success was its distribution of
Philadelphia International Records Philadelphia International Records (PIR) was an American record label based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It was founded in 1971 by songwriting and production duo Gamble and Huff, Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff along with their longtime collaborat ...
, which produced additional hit records by acts such as
the Three Degrees The Three Degrees is an American female vocal group formed circa 1963 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Although 15 women have been members over the years, the group has always been a trio. The current line-up consists of Valerie Holiday, Helen Sco ...

the Three Degrees
and McFadden and Whitehead.


Corporate structure

During the 1960s, Epic oversaw the smaller
subsidiary A subsidiary, subsidiary company or daughter company is a company (law), company owned or controlled by another company, which is called the parent company or holding company. Two subsidiaries that belong to the same parent company are called sis ...
CBS labels including Okeh Records and
Date RecordsDate Records was a sub-label of Columbia Records Columbia Records is an American record label owned by Sony Music, Sony Music Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, the North American division of Japanese Conglomerate (compan ...
. In 1968, Epic recordings began being distributed in the UK by CBS after the distribution deal with EMI expired that year; Epic itself launched in England around 1971. Sony Corporation bought CBS Records in 1987, and the company was renamed Sony Music in 1991. It began splitting European operations into two separate labels, Epic and Columbia, in 1992, and in 1997, Sony Music Australia and New Zealand followed suit. In 2004, Sony merged with music distributor BMG, bringing
Arista Records Arista Records, Inc. () is an American record label owned by Sony Music Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, the North American division of the Japanese conglomerate Sony. The label was previously handled by Bertelsmann Mu ...
, Columbia Records, Epic Records,
J Records J Records was an American record label owned and operated by Sony Music Entertainment, and was distributed through the RCA Music Group. The label was founded in 2000 by Clive Davis and was dissolved into RCA Records in 2011. Company history J Rec ...
,
Jive Records Jive Records was an American independent record label An independent record label (or indie label) is a record label A record label, or record company, is a brand A brand is a name, term, design, symbol or any other feature that iden ...

Jive Records
,
RCA Records RCA Records is an American record label A record label, or record company, is a brand A brand is a name, term, design, symbol or any other feature that identifies one seller's good or service as distinct from those of other sellers. Bra ...

RCA Records
, and
Zomba Group of Companies The Zomba Group of Companies (sometimes referred to as Zomba Music Group or just Zomba Group) was a music group and division owned by and operated under Sony Music Entertainment Sony Music Entertainment (commonly referred to as Sony Music) is ...
to one parent company known as
Sony BMG Music Entertainment Sony BMG Music Entertainment was an American record company owned as a 50–50 joint venture between Sony Corporation of America and Bertelsmann Music Group. The venture's successor, the revived Sony Music, is wholly owned by Sony ...
. In 2008, Sony bought out BMG for $1.2 billion, bringing all affiliated labels together as Sony Music Entertainment International, SMEI. The merger was approved by the
European Union The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of member states that are located primarily in Europe Europe is a which is also recognised as part of , located entirely in the and mostly in the . It comprises the wester ...

European Union
in 2009.


1980s–2010

Epic was arguably the most successful label of the 1980s and its 1980s and 1990s mainstream success were fueled by its signing and releasing of albums by notable acts such as
Michael Jackson Michael Joseph Jackson (August 29, 1958 – June 25, 2009) was an American singer, songwriter and dancer. Dubbed the " King of Pop", he is regarded as one of the most significant cultural figures of the 20th century. Over a four-decade car ...

Michael Jackson
,
Culture Club #REDIRECT Culture Club Culture Club is an English band that formed in London in 1981. The band comprises Boy George George Alan O'Dowd (born 14 June 1961), known professionally as Boy George, is an English singer, songwriter, DJ, fashion desig ...
, the
Miami Sound Machine Miami Sound Machine was an American band Band or BAND may refer to: Places *Bánd, a village in Hungary *Band, Iran, a village in Urmia County, West Azerbaijan Province, Iran *Band, Mureș, a commune in Romania *Band-e Majid Khan, a village i ...
and
Gloria Estefan Gloria Estefan (; born Gloria María Milagrosa Fajardo García; 1 September 1957) is a Cuban and American singer, actress, and businesswoman. A contralto, she started her career as the lead singer in the group Miami Latin Boys, which later bec ...

Gloria Estefan
,
Wham! Wham! (briefly known in the US as Wham! U.K.) were an English pop duo formed in Bushey Bushey is a town in the Hertsmere borough of Hertfordshire in the East of England. It has a population of over 25,000 inhabitants. Bushey Heath is a ...
and
George Michael George Michael (born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou; 25 June 1963 – 25 December 2016) was an English singer, songwriter and record producer. Known as a leading creative force in music production, songwriting, vocal performance and visual presen ...
,
Adam Ant Stuart Leslie Goddard, better known as Adam Ant (born 3 November 1954), is an English singer and musician. He gained popularity as the lead singer of new wave group Adam and the Ants and later as a solo artist, scoring 10 UK top ten hits fro ...

Adam Ant
,
Living Colour Living Colour is an American rock Rock most often refers to: * Rock (geology) A rock is any naturally occurring solid mass or aggregate of minerals or mineraloid matter. It is categorized by the minerals included, its Chemical compound ...
,
Incubus An incubus is a demon in male form who, according to mythological and legendary traditions, lies upon sleeping women in order to engage in sexual activity with them. Its female counterpart is a succubus. Salacious tales of incubi and succubi ...
, Dead or Alive,
Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmass A landmass, or land mass, is a large region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', literally "earth description") is a field of scienc ...
,
Cyndi Lauper Cynthia Ann Stephanie Lauper Thornton (born June 22, 1953) is an American singer, songwriter, actress, and activist. Her career has spanned over 40 years. Her album ''She's So Unusual ''She's So Unusual'' is the debut studio album by American si ...
,
Teena Marie Mary Christine Brockert (March 5, 1956 – December 26, 2010), known professionally as Teena Marie, was an American singer-songwriter, musician, composer, arranger, and producer. She was known by her childhood nickname Tina before taking the sta ...

Teena Marie
,
Ozzy Osbourne John Michael "Ozzy" Osbourne (born 3 December 1948) is an English singer, songwriter, and television personality. He rose to prominence during the 1970s as the lead vocalist of the heavy metal music, heavy metal band Black Sabbath, during wh ...

Ozzy Osbourne
,
Korn#REDIRECT Korn Korn (stylized as KoЯn) is an American nu metal band from Bakersfield, California, formed in 1993. The band is notable for pioneering the nu metal genre and bringing it into the mainstream. Originally formed in 1993 by three ...

Korn
,
Pearl Jam Pearl Jam is an American rock Rock most often refers to: * Rock (geology) A rock is any naturally occurring solid mass or aggregate of minerals or mineraloid matter. It is categorized by the minerals included, its Chemical compound, ch ...
,
Sade Sade may refer to: People * Sade (singer) Helen Folasade Adu ( yo, Fọláṣadé Adú ; born 16 January 1959), known professionally as Sade Adu or simply Sade ( ), is a Nigerian-born British singer, songwriter, and actress, known as the lead ...
,
Luther Vandross Luther Ronzoni Vandross Jr. (April 20, 1951 – July 1, 2005) was an American singer, songwriter, and record producer. He is noted for his sweet and soulful vocals. Throughout his career, Vandross was an in-demand background vocalist for severa ...
, the
Indigo Girls Indigo Girls are an American folk rock music duet (music), duo from Atlanta, Georgia, United States, consisting of Amy Ray and Emily Saliers. The two met in elementary school and began performing together as high school students in Decatur, Geo ...
,
Stevie Ray Vaughan Stephen Ray Vaughan (October 3, 1954August 27, 1990) was an American musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer, best known as the guitarist and frontman of the blues rock band Double Trouble (band), Double Trouble. Although his mainstream ...
,
Rage Against the Machine Rage Against the Machine (often abbreviated as RATM or shortened to Rage) is an American rock band from Los Angeles Los Angeles (; es, Los Ángeles; "The Angels"), officially the City of Los Angeles and often abbreviated as L.A., is ...

Rage Against the Machine
, Céline Dion,
Ginuwine Elgin Baylor Lumpkin (born October 15, 1970), better known by his stage name Ginuwine, is an American Contemporary R&B, R&B singer, songwriter, dancer, and actor. He began his career as a member of Swing Mob in the early 1990s. Signing to Epic R ...

Ginuwine
, and
Oasis In geography, an oasis (, plural oases, ) is a fertile land in a desert or semi-desert environment.Thriller Thriller may refer to: * Thriller (genre), a broad genre of literature, film and television ** Thriller film, a film genre under the general thriller genre Comics * Thriller (DC Comics), ''Thriller'' (DC Comics), a comic book series published 1983 ...
'' album, released by Epic, is the best-selling album of all time. Another one of the label's many successes came via George Michael's debut solo album ''
Faith Faith, derived from ''fides'' and ''feid'', is confidence or trust in a , thing, or In the context of , one can define faith as " in or in the doctrines or teachings of religion". Religious people often think of faith as confidence based on ...
'' which is estimated to have sold 25 million copies worldwide. Epic Soundtrax was founded in 1992. It was central to Epic's 1990s success, with 11 releases cumulatively selling more than 40 million records over a three-year period. Notable releases included soundtrack albums for ''Honeymoon in Vegas'', ''
SinglesSingles may refer to: * Single persons and associated businesses and discussions Film and television * Singles (miniseries), ''Singles'' (miniseries), a 1984 Australian television series * Singles (1992 film), ''Singles'' (1992 film), written and ...
'', ''Sleepless in Seattle'', ''Forrest Gump (soundtrack), Forrest Gump'', ''Philadelphia'', and ''Judgment Night (soundtrack), Judgment Night''. In 1999, Jennifer Lopez released her debut album, ''On the 6'', as part of Work Group, WORK Group which was a critical and commercial success going on to sell over 8 million copies worldwide. Lopez's sophomore album J.Lo (album), ''J.Lo'', experienced similar success in which over 8 million copies were sold worldwide in 2001, gaining multi-platinum status under Epic Records. With this album, Lopez became the first female solo artist under the record company to reach the number one spot on the Billboard 200, ''Billboard'' 200. The 2002 remix album J to tha L–O! The Remixes, ''J TO THA L-O! The Remixes'', which served as a follow up to Lopez's sophomore effort, was the first remix album to debut at number one on the ''Billboard'' 200, and became the fourth best selling remix album of all time, behind ''Michael Jackson'' (fellow Epic Records artist), Madonna (entertainer), ''Madonna'' and ''The Beatles''. What's more is, in the second week at number one for the remix album, Lopez's remix single ''Ain't It Funny (Murder Remix)'', was also number one, making Lopez the only artist in history to have a number one remix album and single in the same week. Lopez's third studio album, released in late 2002 which was also a success, This Is Me... Then, ''This is me... Then'', sold 6 million copies worldwide and peaked at the second spot of the ''Billboard'' 200. Lopez's first full-length Spanish debut, ''Como Ama una Mujer, Como Ama Una Mujer'', became the first Spanish-language debut album to enter the top 10 of the ''Billboard'' 200, and has sold 1 million copies worldwide. This was Lopez's final studio album under Epic Records before her move to Island Def Jam and Capitol, until she released her first greatest hits compilation, Dance Again... the Hits, ''Dance Again... The Hits'', gaining critical success. In February 2009, Sony Music Group chairman Rob Stringer appointed singer-songwriter Amanda Ghost as president of Epic. Ghost, who had successfully promoted James Blunt to Grammy Award–winning status, was an unconventional and controversial choice for president because she had no corporate executive experience. She was expected to reverse the trend of declining sales at Epic by promoting the label's newer and mid-tier artists such as Augustana (band), Augustana. Stringer also merged Epic and Columbia to form the Columbia/Epic Label Group in 2009, with himself as acting chairman. Ghost scored hit records for the Fray, Modest Mouse, Matisyahu and Sean Kingston. However, she delayed the scheduled release of Shakira's album ''She Wolf'' by insisting that the album contain another song – "Give It Up to Me" featuring Lil Wayne and uncredited Timbaland. This delay probably caused ''She Wolf'' to perform less well in the market. Epic staff members described Ghost as "abrasive" and a "loose cannon". She was fired in October 2010, with Stringer apologizing for his mistake: "I owe the people at Epic..."


2011–present

In July 2011, L.A. Reid became the CEO of Epic Records, signing artists such as TLC (band), TLC, Toni Braxton, Cher Lloyd, Avril Lavigne, Outkast, Future (rapper), Future, Yo Gotti, Ciara, Meghan Trainor, DJ Khaled, and Travis Scott. Epic also signed the winners of ''The X Factor (U.S.), The X Factor'' during the seasons that Reid appeared on the show. In 2013, Sylvia Rhone, former president of Universal Motown, launched the imprint Vested In Culture through Epic Records. A year later, she was named president of Epic. In November 2014, Mosley Music Group created a joint venture with Sony Music, with marketing, publicity, distribution and overall label services provided by Epic. The joint venture was created due to Timbaland's previous co-collaboration with Reid on Michael Jackson's posthumous album, ''Xscape (album), Xscape''. Previously operated by Interscope, most of MMG's roster moved to Epic. In 2015, Def Jam Recordings parted ways with Mariah Carey and Carey reunited with Reid at Epic. She had worked with Reid at Def Jam under The Island Def Jam Music Group in 2004. Carey's deals with both Def Jam and Epic were at a fraction of the $80 million deal Carey had previously signed with Virgin Records; Virgin later rescinded that deal after poor sales. That same month, it was announced that R&B group Jodeci had signed to the label and planned to release their first studio album in 20 years. Wondaland Records, singer Janelle Monáe's imprint, entered into a joint venture with Epic in 2015. Acts on Wondaland include Jidenna, St. Beauty, Deep Cotton and Roman GianArthur. In 2016, Jennifer Lopez returned to Sony Music, six years after leaving in favor of Island Def Jam and Capitol Records. Lopez's multi-album deal reunited her with Reid, whom she signed with at Island Def Jam in 2010. In January 2017, 21 Savage signed to Epic. On May 11, 2017, it was announced that Reid would exit as the label's CEO. Following his exit, it was reported that Reid had been accused of sexual harassment by multiple Epic employees. On April 23, 2019, it was announced that Rhone had been appointed as Chairman, Chair and CEO of the label.


Formerly affiliated labels

* 550 Music (1993–2000) * Blue Sky Records, Blue Sky (1974–1982) * Caribou Records (1976–1985) * Cold Chillin' Records (1993–1998) *
Date RecordsDate Records was a sub-label of Columbia Records Columbia Records is an American record label owned by Sony Music, Sony Music Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, the North American division of Japanese Conglomerate (compan ...
(1960s) * Duble Kick Entertainment (2010–2015) * Epic Records Nashville (? – May 2006) * Epic Soundtrax (1992–1997) * Epic Street (1993–1998) * Cleveland International Records (1976–1983) * CTI Records (1980) * Tuff City Records (1983–1984) * Hidden Beach Records (1998–2007) * Glacial Pace (mid–1990s) * Invictus Records (1973–1976) * Jet Records (1978–1983) * Kirshner Records (1974–1983) * MJJ Music (1988–2001) * MLD Entertainment (2010–2017) * Nemperor Records (1977–1990) * Ode Records (1967–1969, 1976–1979) * OKeh Records (1965–1970, 1994–2000) * Pasha Records (1979–1990) *
Philadelphia International Records Philadelphia International Records (PIR) was an American record label based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It was founded in 1971 by songwriting and production duo Gamble and Huff, Kenneth Gamble and Leon Huff along with their longtime collaborat ...
(1971–1984) * Portrait Records (1976–1992) * Ruthless Records (1990, 1999–2009) * Scotti Brothers (1979–1988) * SOLAR Records (1989–1993) * Stone Music Entertainment (1994–2015) * T-Neck Records (1972–1984) * Tabu Records (1978–1991) * Work Group, The WORK Group (1994–1999) * Virgin Records (1976–1978, 1982–1986)


Artists


Logos

Unlike sister label Columbia, Epic went through five different logos since its launch. Some logos were temporarily revived for period reissues. The years shown below list the time served as the label's primary logo. File:Epicrecords.jpg, Classic radial sound sunburst logo, 1953–1973, 1998–2005 File:Epic Records 1970s.png, Big "E" logo, 1973–1978 File:Epic Records.svg, Script logo, late 1978–1991, 2005–2011, 2015–present File:Epic Records logo 1991.gif, Stacked-record logo, 1991–1998 File:Epic Records 2011.svg, Red print logo, 2011–2015


See also

* Epic Records Japan (Japanese branch of Epic Records) * List of record labels *Immortal Records


References


External links

*
Sony Music
Parent Company of Epic

{{Authority control Epic Records, American record labels Heavy metal record labels Hip hop record labels IFPI members Jazz record labels Record labels established in 1953 Pop record labels Rock record labels Contemporary R&B record labels Rhythm and blues record labels Sony Music