TVT Opens In U.K., Inks Vital Deal

TVT Records is setting up shop in the United Kingdom.

NEW YORK -- TVT Records is setting up shop in the United Kingdom.

The New York-based independent label will announce next week the formation of TVT Records U.K., to be helmed by managing director Jonathan Green. The London-based unit will handle TVT releases in the U.K. and Ireland.

Distribution will be by Vital. TVT releases in Britain were previously handled through licensing deals; the most recent of these, with Universal-Island, expired early last year.

"During the deal with Universal, a lot of our biggest releases got lost in the shuffle. Some never came out at all," TVT founder and president Steve Gottlieb tells ELW. He cites as examples albums by Lil Jon & the East Side Boyz, Ying Yang Twins, Sevendust and Default, all of which were hits in the United States. "So we decided that it was time for us to take matters into our own hands. We'd already been having good success on the continent and now anticipate spreading that success to the U.K."

Green joins from his Green Consulting firm, where he worked with TVT and other indies. Prior to that, he spent seven years as GM of Mercury Records U.K. In 2001, he set up Def Jam U.K. as a stand-alone entity within Mercury. Before joining Mercury, Green was EMI's U.K. head of marketing. He says TVT's new office will be "a great conduit for U.S. product into the U.K. and a great conduit for U.K. product into the U.S."

Green has named as urban manager Martin Moulton, who previously spent seven years at BMG. Stuart Meikle, formerly at Pinnacle at 3MV, is named rock/alternative manager. Catherine McGregor, who was at ITB, is named marketing assistant.

The first U.K. release will be Lil Jon & the East Side Boyz's "Crunk Juice," out Feb. 14. In the U.S., the set is in its 10th week atop Billboard's Top Independent Albums chart. Also planned are albums previously released in the States from Ying Yang Twins, 213, Pitbull, Teedra Moses and Ambulance LTD. Additionally, TVT U.K. has signed Manchester punk act Towers of London, which will issue its first single next month.