Jermaine Dupri to Run New Division at Island Def Jam Music Division


By: Janice Dayle
Chief Overseas Editor

Jermaine-Dupri-hip-hop-sexygirls.jpgJermaine Dupri was appointed President of Island Records Urban Music last week..

Commonly billed as a top number one hit maker and rightly so, Dupri has churned out a series of winning sounds over 15 years since his first number 1 on Billboard's Hot 100, "Jump" with Kris Kross in 1992. His consistent success as a producer and songwriter thrust the 2005 Grammy Award Winner, for Mariah Carey's "We Belong Together," to the top of this new division at the Island Def Jam Music Group. Antonio "L.A." Reid, Chairman, Island Def Jam Music Group (IDJ), announced the appointment which requires Dupri to oversee Islandโ€™s entire urban music operation in addition to producing artists on the IDJ roster and providing his expert production services to the entire Universal Music Group family of labels.

Dupri will be based in Atlanta and New York as he takes on this newly created position and will report directly to L.A. Reid as well as to Steve Bartels, President, Island Records/COO, IDJ Music Group, on operational matters. "I'm so excited to be reunited with L.A. Reid because most of my biggest hits were when he and I worked together," said Dupri. "And then to be working side by side with Steve Bartels -- I don't think there's a better team because he's by far the best in the game. I can't wait for us to start stuntin' on y'all."

Undoubtedly one of Urban Music's paramount figures today, Dupri has been an integral player in the production of numerous hit records. His 5 time platinum success with the teen duo, Kris Kross led to the founding of So So Def label in 1993 and recognition for Dupri as one of the foremost young entrepreneurs driving hip-hops creative and commercial force in mainstream music. Many gold, platinum and multi-platinum artists like, Xscape, Da Brat, Jagged Edge, Lil'Bow Wow and J-Kwon were signed and nurtured by Dupri's So So Def label that became known as an engine for not only hit records, but also artist development.

"Jermaine's career has grown from strength to strength over the years," said L.A. Reid, "as a producer and songwriter and recording artist in his own right, as a respected label executive and entrepreneur, and as a highly esteemed developer of new talent. His deep ties to Atlanta's creative R&B and hip-hop community have been the springboard to working with the greatest names in contemporary music."

Dupri has an illustrious legacy that includes a long distance run of hits with Usher that began in 1997 culminating with the 8 times platinum "Confessions" album and collaborations with IDJ artists Jay-Z, Ludacris and Lionel Ritchie. He has turned out hits with Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, TLC, Toni Braxton, Run-DMC, Alicia Keyes, Chingy, Janet Jackson, Aaliyah, Monica, Ciara and many more.