Sugar Hill, Vanguard Purchased By Concord Music Group

concord sugar hill vanguardRecord labels Sugar Hill and Vanguard have been purchased by Concord Music Group. Both entities were previously owned by Welk Music Group.

In Nashville, Sugar Hill’s operations and label team will be merged under Concord’s Rounder Label Group. Cliff O’Sullivan, General Manager of Sugar Hill prior to the acquisition, will be the label group’s Chief Operating Officer and will report to group president, John Virant.

In Los Angeles, Vanguard’s operations and label team will be merged under Concord’s Fantasy Label Group. Dan Sell, General Manager of Vanguard prior to the acquisition, will continue to lead the label’s operations as Vanguard’s Chief Operating Officer. He will report to Fantasy Label Group president, Margi Cheske.

Welk’s president Kevin Welk will remain engaged with Vanguard and Sugar Hill as Chief Creative for the labels. He will also continue to contribute to development and optimizations of the labels’ artist rosters.

Nashville-based Sugar Hill’s roster includes Sarah Jarosz, Lee Ann Womack, Liz Longley, Corey Smith, Kasey Chambers, Sam Bush, moe., Bryan Sutton, Black Prairie and more.

Vanguard’s current roster includes Indigo Girls, Chris Isaak, John Butler Trio, John Fogerty, Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness, Matt Nathanson, O.A.R., Barenaked Ladies, Sallie Ford, Marc Broussard, Jerry Lee Lewis and Trevor Hall, among others.

Other labels under Concord Music Group include Nashville-based Rounder Records, as well as Stax, Fantasy, and more. Currently, Sugar Hill’s Nashville-area offices are located at The Factory at Franklin, and Rounder’s offices are in the Gulch.

The acquisition of Vanguard and Sugar Hill closely follows the recent merger of Concord Music Group and The Bicycle Music Company, a leading independent music publisher, record label and rights manager, into Concord Bicycle Music. In connection with the merger, Concord Bicycle Music raised $100 million in added capital to fund additional growth through music rights acquisitions and artist development investments.

“Concord is strengthened today by the addition of Vanguard and Sugar Hill’s acclaimed artist roster, renowned catalog and gifted executives,” stated Concord Music Group CEO Glen Barros. “This acquisition further establishes Concord Music Group as a home for extraordinary artists. We welcome Vanguard and Sugar Hill into the Concord family and look forward to building upon their great legacies.”

“Strategically, we couldn’t find a better home for Vanguard and Sugar Hill,” stated Kevin Welk. “Not only will they care for our historic catalog and distinguished artists, their desire to grow the new artist business was paramount in the decision. Combining the executive talent of both companies will strengthen Concord’s ability to nurture new talent and be a force in this business.”

Vanguard’s catalog includes hundreds of pivotal titles from Joan Baez, Doc Watson, Levon Helm, Buddy Guy, Country Joe and the Fish, Big Mama Thornton, Mississippi John Hurt, John Fahey and Buffy Sainte-Marie amongst many others.

A sampling of classics from the Sugar Hill catalog includes albums from Nickel Creek, Don Williams, Doc Watson, Dolly Parton, Guy Clark, New Grass Revival, Robert Earl Keen, Tim O’Brien and Tony Rice.



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Jessica Nicholson serves as the Managing Editor for MusicRow magazine. Her previous music journalism experience includes work with Country Weekly magazine and Contemporary Christian Music (CCM) magazine. She holds a BBA degree in Music Business and Marketing from Belmont University. She welcomes your feedback at [email protected]

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