Terri Anderson, much respected in the U.K. industry as both a trade press journalist and as a corporate communications executive at the BPI, EMI Music, MCPS-PRS and AIM, died last Friday (May 24) after a battle with cancer. She was 66.
Anderson was a frequent contributor to Billboard, covering U.K. music business stories during the 1970 – such as the launch of commercial radio in the territory in 1973. From the mid-’70s into the ’80s (initially as a freelancer, later on staff), hers was a frequent and widely-read byline in the British trade publication Music Week, covering both industry issues as well as writing artist interview features before going on to become the longtime editor of the title’s retailing section.
In the 1980s Anderson was the BPI’s head of public relations before going on to fill a global PR role for EMI Music. In the late 1990s she worked as the planning director for songwriter/publisher association the PRS. Anderson added executive officer responsibilities at the MCPS-PRS Alliance, as it was then known, in 1999.
In later years, with her experience much in demand at industry events, she was director of CISAC’s 2002 congress in London, and served as corporate communications consultant with AIM (the Association of Independent Music), helping to devise future strategy. Via her own Big Red Kite Communications firm, Anderson helped WIN (Worldwide Independent Network) organize a multi-trade body and label meeting as recently as January 2012.
AIM chair Alison Wenham describes Anderson as a rare industry breed, “someone who didn’t seek the limelight, but who made a major difference to all the executives, companies and organizations she served. She had the respect and gratitude of the whole industry.”
Recently retired Universal Music Group International VP of communications Adam White worked alongside Anderson at Music Week during his career in journalism, prior to becoming Billboard's editor-in-chief. He remembers her as “perceptive, quiet-spoken, modest and graceful, qualities not often thus combined in music industry professionals. I loved working with, and knowing, her. She was as talented a journalist as you ever will find.”
Chris White, another of Anderson’s colleagues at Music Week, where he served as talent editor, adds: “Terri was the ultimate professional, always calm and cool in her dealings with all whom she met. She was certainly very helpful to me, always willing to share her considerable knowledge and offer advice when it was needed.”
BPI Chairman Tony Wadsworth says Anderson “tackled the thorniest of issues with good humor and the deft skill of one who knows what they’re talking about. She had a ready smile and was a lovely human being.”