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Lanre Gaba Named Atlantic Records’ Co-President Black Music

Gaba, who has spent two decades at the label, will work alongside co-president Mike Kyser.

Lanre Gaba has been promoted to the title of co-president of Black music at Atlantic Records, the company announced today (Jan. 18). The move means Gaba will work alongside Atlantic’s longtime president of Black music Mike Kyser, reporting to co-chairman/CEO Craig Kallman and co-chairman/COO Julie Greenwald.

Gaba has spent two decades at Atlantic, most recently as general manager/ executive vp Black music A&R, though her duties during her tenure have spanned a variety of different departments, including marketing, finance, strategic planning and recording studio operations, in addition to A&R. She worked at EMI Music Publishing and Ruffhouse Music Publishing before joining Atlantic in 2002 and moving up the ranks through the company.

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“I’ve had an amazing journey at Atlantic,” Gaba said in a statement regarding her new position. “To be given the opportunities I’ve had at every step of the way, and to have been mentored by Craig and Julie has been an extraordinary experience. Atlantic was built on Black Music and a continued legacy of artist development. We have the most exceptional artists on our roster, whose music moves the culture. Our Black Music team is unmatched in the industry for our reputation in breaking new artists. I’m so excited to work with Kyser to continue to build the best home for our talent to realize their visions and for their music to reach fans across the globe.”

In recent years, Gaba has played an instrumental role in the label’s R&B/hip-hop successes, working with the likes of Cardi B, Lil Uzi Vert, Roddy Ricch, Jack Harlow, Burna Boy, A Boogie Wit da Hoodie, YoungBoy Never Broke Again and one of 2021’s breakout artists, Pooh Shiesty. She also has been involved with Gucci Mane and his New 1017 Records imprint, which signed Pooh Shiesty, and helped her earn the title of Billboard’s Executive of the Week in February of last year.

“Lanre’s knowledge and experience spans nearly every area of our business, from A&R to marketing to finance,” Kyser said in a statement. “She’s become one of the most versatile and impressive players in the business, while playing a key role in the evolution of our Black Music department. I’m very happy to welcome her as my partner as we strive to raise the level of services and expand the breadth of support we offer our incredible artists. I know we’ll be doing great things together.”

In 2019, Gaba was named the RIAA’s Executive of the Year for her efforts, including with developing and breaking Cardi and Lizzo. She’s also appeared in Billboard’s R&B/Hip-Hop Power Players, Women in Music and Change Agents features, recognizing her achievements and advocacy through the years.

“Lanre’s growth over the past two decades has been a wonderful thing to witness,” Kallman and Greenwald said in a joint statement. “She’s evolved into one of the most admired and accomplished execs in our business, driven by a real fan’s passion, deep knowledge and relentless work ethic. Our artists and our team love her for her devotion, creativity and experience. The combination of Lanre and Kyser will make a brilliant leadership duo for our Black Music department, as we continue to provide our artists unparalleled dedication and resources to launch and build long-term careers. We congratulate Lanre on this richly deserved new post.”