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 Oct. 2, 2015
With such a burgeoning dining scene, it can sometimes take some effort to keep up, much less think back about how Milwaukee has become such a diners' delight. But OnMilwaukee's own dining guru, Lori Fredrich, has made it easy. Fredrich has written the first real in-depth book about Milwaukee's exciting dining scene and how it got that way.
Published Oct. 2, 2015
Milwaukee is a city rife with associations, from beer to brats, Hogs to "Happy Days." But for devoted fans of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, Milwaukee means only one thing: the bomb scare show - that Thursday night in October 1975 when the band's Cream City concert was halted by a bomb threat and resumed three hours later, resulting in a high-energy show unlike any other the band would ever perform. Are you loose?!
Published Sept. 29, 2015
With a string of three shows by unrivaled country megastar Garth Brooks on tap at the BMO Harris Bradley Center last week, the postponement of an anticipated 50th anniversary tour concert by The Who at the venue, and the drive to build a replacement for the BC clearing its final hurdle, it seemed like the perfect time to sit down with the Bradley Center's Director of Booking Doug Johnson to talk about the past, present and future.
Published Sept. 25, 2015
Our first stop on a long road trip east? A 15-minute drive to Bay View to board the Lake Express Ferry. The two-and-half-hour trip not only saved us navigating Chicago on a Friday morning, but was also great fun in itself. And there's definitely something to be said for arriving in Michigan ready to go with a full tank of gas.
Published Sept. 22, 2015
Milwaukee's City Plan Commission yesterday approved architects' Engberg Anderson's plan to rehab and add onto the former First German Methodist Church - later dubbed Building 23 after Pabst purchased it - at 1037 W. Juneau Ave. That means the project can now officially move forward.
Published Sept. 21, 2015
Though Kenny Baldwin was a drummer with local bands like Colour Radio and Locate Your Lips, he was most influential behind the scenes at his family's club, The Starship, and for his many years of production work at Summerfest. Beloved by everyone who knew him, Baldwin lost a long battle with cancer on Friday.
Published Sept. 18, 2015
We've all seen the Milwaukee neighborhood posters. Decades after their first appearance, these images endure. These iconic 1980s posters were created by then-city employee Jan Kotowicz and featured a long essay by historian John Gurda on the reverse. The posters have now also served as an anchor for a weighty new tome published by Historic Milwaukee Inc. The 472-page book, "Milwaukee: City of Neighborhoods," was written by Gurda and includes 11 new poster images created by the now-retired Kotowicz.
Published Sept. 17, 2015
When Milwaukee artist Ariana Huggett started to leak out images of the paintings for her upcoming show, "Old Schools" - on view Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 19-20, in conjunction with Doors Open Milwaukee, at the Material Studios + Gallery in the Third Ward - a lot of folks took notice.
Published Sept. 16, 2015
Last night, Milwaukee Public Library upped the number of Wisconsin Writers Wall of Fame inductees when it added Increase Lapham to the Badger State pantheon.
Published Sept. 16, 2015
Though the newly buffed Streets of Old Milwaukee won't open to the public until Dec. 11 - work is currently on schedule, according to museum staff - I got a peek inside this week, along with MPM's Director of Exhibits Julian Jackson.