Thursday, January 23, 2014

Music Mavens Part Three: Clive Davis

Above photo: Clive Davis with Janis Joplin

In honor of Grammy week, this is part 3 of our 4-part series on the most influential people in the music industry. Clive Davis knows how to spot musical talent. His nickname is "The man with the golden ears". He is a Brooklyn-born, Harvard-educated lawyer who started at Columbia Records in 1960. By 1967, he was president of the label. During his time with Columbia Records he signed Janis Joplin and Carlos Santana. He started his own label, Arista Records, in 1974. He discovered the talents of Barry Manilow and Whitney Houston and signed them to his label. He said this about Whitney Houston:

"You wait for a voice like that for a lifetime. You way for a face like that, a smile like that, a presence like that, for a lifetime. And when one person embodies it all, well, it takes your breath away."

In 2000, he started another label, simply called J Records, which would have music distributed by BMG. Also in 2000, Davis was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He has won five Grammy awards. During his amazing career he discovered artists such as Pink Floyd, Chicago, Billy Joel and Bruce Springsteen.

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