In what must be something of a weird feeling, Milwaukee expatriate Jeff Castelaz has been named president of Elektra Records.
The news was confirmed in an internal Warner Music Group memo today.
"Since its re-launch in 2009, Elektra has helped develop the careers of some of today's most exciting and popular talents. Jeff – with his strong creative instincts, indie sensibility and entrepreneurial drive – is the perfect choice to take this iconic imprint to new heights," wrote Atlantic chairman and CEO Craig Kallman and Atlantic chairman and COO Julie Greenwald in the joint communique.
In a statement, Elektra founder Jac Holzman said "Jeff's broad experience with indie recording and indie management has given him the perfect combination of energy, taste and a commitment to scout the edges and find those seminal artists, a bit ahead of their time, who are capable of making a significant contribution to those who embrace the best of new music. I look forward to our association."
In an article by Todd Martens, the L.A. Times today quotes Castelaz:
"They asked if I would like to bring the spirit and the action plan that I've had with my own record label to bear under the Elektra Records banner," Castelaz told Martens.
"Truth be told it was an absolute surprise that the topic came up. As the words crossed their lips, I immediately felt like this could be a wonderful opportunity for me."
After managing Citizen King and other bands for years in Milwaukee, Castelaz moved to L.A. and started Dangerbird Records with Peter Walker, working with Silversun Pickups, Sea Wolf and Fitz and the Tantrums, among others.
Castelaz left Dangerbird last month to focus on the clients of his Cast Management business, a company he started here.
"I started to feel that after 20-plus years as an indie music dude – I was a manager since I was 18 and I started the label 10 years ago – I've accomplished a lot of my goals in the record company space.
"I'm ... excited to be given an opportunity to step into the top position at a deeply meaningful label. This is a label that generations of people have grown up listening to."
Among the many artists signed to Elektra over the years were The Doors, The Cure, Queen, The Cars and Anita Baker, among others.
Castelaz also founded the Pablove Foundation while his late son Pablo was battling cancer.
I said at the beginning that the move might seem a weird one to Castelaz, because back in his Milwaukee days, Castelaz was in talks with then Elektra boss Sylvia Rhone in trying to work out a deal between Citizen King and the label. I bet he'd never have imagined back then that he'd be following in Rhone's footsteps in the future.
1 comment about this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Bobby Tanzilo
Published July 31, 2015
Last week, I got a message from Paul Walter, a co-facilitator at the Slinger Authors' Camp, a youth program that's part of the Fox Valley Writing Project (which is, in turn, affiliated with the National Writing Project). The 17 kids in the program are suburban spelunking in their town.
Published July 30, 2015
There's no need to massage the statistics: men are hitting spas across the country - and right here in Milwaukee - in bigger numbers than ever before.
Published July 28, 2015
Some details of the plan for the new development in the trio of National Ace Hardware buildings on 4th and McKinley have emerged, right as plans for a new arena and entertainment district across the street have taken steps forward.
Published July 25, 2015
One of the Milwaukee area's most interesting parks is a bit off the beaten path, but it's worth making tracks to Lizard Mound County Park in Farmington, just north of West Bend in Washington County. A wooded path twists and turns through 28 Native American effigy mounds, including the one shaped like a huge lizard which gives the park its name.
Published July 24, 2015
Green Lake is a place of superlatives. Here are eight of the many reasons to fall in love with Green Lake, which is an easy 90-minute drive from Milwaukee.
Published July 24, 2015
What a long strange trip it was. While theaters like the Downer and Oriental have venerable histories as long-running cinema houses, consider, if you will, the the more varied history of the now-dilapidated State Theater, 2616 W. State St. Originally a movie theater, the State has served a number of purposes - rock venue, prudish dance hall and strip club - in its nearly 100-year history.
Published July 22, 2015
There were about 500 people on hand to watch U2 at The Palms on April 15, 1981. The show was part of the Irish band's first U.S. tour. Here's a look back...
Published July 21, 2015
Come with me to see the progress on the restoration of The Pabst Mansion's third floor and also peek into the basement and attic, and experience the view from the roof of this Milwaukee landmark.
Published July 17, 2015
Milwaukee neighborhoods were once awash in movie theaters, as hard as that may be to imagine these days when you can count the number of non-googleplex cinemas in the city limits on one hand. While many are lost, a few remain. At 3804 W. Vliet St. is a former longtime carpet store that's been closed the past few years. But, originally, the building was home to The Lyric Theater, which operated from 1917 to 1952.
Published July 14, 2015
In 2012, I toured the surviving Alexander Eschweiler-designed Agricultural College buildings on the County Grounds, when their roofs gaped open to the stars - and the elements - and weeds encircled their exteriors. Despite talk of tearing them down, and an ongoing battle to save them from demolition, four of the buildings survive, even as six new apartment buildings are rising around them.