In the Past Five Years, 319 A&R Executives Have Been Fired or Let Go

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The stat comes from the LA-based Music Registry, which has been diligently tracking label comings-and-goings since the early 90s.

And if there’s one specialty that’s experienced a lot of ‘goings,’ it’s A&R (for the uninitiated, a talent scouting and development position that’s short for ‘artists and repertoire’).

> Number of A&R Executives Departing Label Groups, 2007-2011

2007: 129
2008: 64
2009: 50
2010: 40
2011: 36

That’s a total of 319 people in just five years, and very few are finding new gigs.  “Out of those 36 A&R executives who left their A&R positions in 2011, only 1 of them so far, has gotten another job in A&R,” Music Registry founder Ritch Esra relayed.  “In 2010, 40 A&R executives exited their A&R positions at various labels and not one of them had gotten another A&R job in 2010.”

That said, there are some notable hirings happening, including a pick-up over the past two months.  According to the Registry, the late-2011 handful includes Christopher ‘Tricky’ Stewart joining Epic, Shawn Holiday joining RCA, John Ehmann heading towards an A&R role at Interscope, Adam Herzog joining Warner Bros., and Jaymes and David Foster inking A&R slots with UMG-owned Verve.  And, over in the UK, Richard O’Donovan accepted an A&R position at Polydor while Pete Sheldrake joined Lizard King.

In total, 31 A&R executives were actually hired in 2011, but the incoming class keeps getting smaller.  This year’s tally is better than just 23 hires in 2010, but down from 58 in 2009 and 80 hired in 2008.