Record Labels

Jonathan Azu's Culture Collective Signs Global Distribution Deal With Ingrooves

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The first release under the deal will be music from R&B singer-songwriter Luke James.

Culture Collective, a management collective launched last year by former Red Light Management executive vp and GM Jonathan Azu, has signed an exclusive global distribution deal with Ingrooves Music Group, it was announced Friday (Jan. 31). The first release under the new partnership will be from R&B singer-songwriter Luke James, whose album to feel love/d was released today.

“I formed a relationship with Ingrooves to help put the power back into the hands of the artists we work with every day,” said Azu in a statement. “Launching a Culture Collective distribution pipeline is a logical step in giving our artists the ability to release music to their fans the way they want and on their own timetable. Ingrooves provides us the kind of flexibility and know-how that we need to give artists like Luke James an opportunity to build their legacies on their own terms.”

Ingrooves is a music marketing services and distribution company owned by Universal Music Group. 

“In Culture Collective Jonathan is building the kind of company that our industry needs,” added Ingrooves executive vp and GM Amy Dietz. “His vision to empower a diverse group of artists in every area of their career, including a hands-on approach to releasing music, is going to be a gamechanger and we’re thrilled to be a part of his team.”

James recently released three singles off to feel love/d, including “go girl” featuring BJ The Chicago Kid and Ro James, “all of your love” and “blow.” He recently performed a medley of the former two songs on BET’s Soul Train Awards. As an actor, he portrayed Sean “P. Diddy” Combs in USA Networks’ Unsolved: The Murders of Tupac and the Notorious B.I.G. and New Edition member Johnny Gill in BET’s The New Edition Story.

Culture Collectives’ roster also includes Emily King, Cory Henry and Michelle Williams.

Editor's Note: A previous version of this story stated that Luke James' album came out last week; it came out on Friday (Jan. 31). A previous version also stated Anita Baker was a client at Culture Collectives; she no longer works with the company.