Lyor Cohen Named Head of YouTube Global Music
Lyor Cohen has been named the new head of global music at YouTube. The media company made the announcement official today (Sept. 28). Cohen's new role at YouTube will include overseeing relations between the video giant and record companies as well as helping the development of the YouTube Music app.
Cohen is a 30-year veteran to the music industry and his résumé shows it. The 56-year-old served as president of Island Def Jam Music Group from 1998 to 2003 and is a former chairman/CEO of Warner Music Group’s recorded music division. Most recently, Lyor's job title has been founder and co-CEO of his own independent record label 300 Entertainment, which he launched in 2012 with fellow execs Kevin Liles and Todd Moscowitz. 300 Entertainment is home to acts like Young Thug, Fetty Wap, Rich The Kid and more.
“I hope that together we can move towards a more collaborative relationship between the music industry and the technologies that are shaping the future of the business,” wrote Cohen in an open letter to YouTube upon the announcement of his hiring. The news also comes right on the heels of major record labels suing websites that allow users to rip YouTube videos and download them as MP3 files.
This new addition to the YouTube team comes as the media giant battles to mend relationships between the music industry. Outspoken critics of YouTube have said in the past that the site doesn’t pay fair royalty rates to artists and hasn't done enough to fight piracy of music.
What will this mean for Cohen's position at the label he helped create? Variety reports that according to YouTube, Cohen will continue to act as CEO of 300 until December 5. After that, the company's management "will transition Lyor’s day-to-day responsibilities to the leadership team within the company."
XXL has reached out to 300 Entertainment for comment but have yet to hear back.
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