Rock veterans Jackson Browne and Patti Smith have left their longtime record homes. Browne has fulfilled his contractual duties with Elektra, and is in the process of looking for a new label.
Rock veterans Jackson Browne and Patti Smith have left their longtime record homes.
Browne has fulfilled his contractual duties with Elektra, and is in the process of looking for a new label. "I've had conversations with a couple of different people, but it's still not time" to make a decision, Browne tells Billboard.biz. "I have such difficulty talking to record companies before there's music to be played."
Browne's contract with Elektra expired after the release of last year's "Night Ride Home," which has sold 139,000 copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan.
Browne, who will be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in March, is writing material for a new album, but his immediate focus is on a series of audio DVDs that he plans to release through Warner Strategic Marketing this spring.
He first recorded for David Geffen's Asylum Records, which merged with Elektra in the mid-'80s. "The fact that I was basically on one label for my entire career used to be something I was proud about, but I don't necessarily think it's something" to strive for now, he says.
"There were times when you were about to release an album and then there would be some corporate shift and the five or six people you were working with were gone," he continues. "It would have been easier to go through the process of finding a new label each time."
He expects to announce his new affiliation by year's end.
As for Smith, the artist is preparing to release her first album for Columbia after 29 years on Arista.
The move reunites her with Sony Music U.S. president Don Ienner, with whom she worked at Arista. Her first release for the new label will be released in April. Smith, who manages herself, is planning a summer tour behind the album, which is her first since 2000's "Gung Ho!" That project has sold 49,000 copies.