Universal Music Group Nashville

Universal Music Group Nashville is Universal Music Group's country music subsidiary. Some of the labels in this group include MCA Nashville Records, Mercury Nashville Records, Lost Highway Records, Capitol Records Nashville and EMI Records Nashville. UMG Nashville not only handles these imprints, but also manages the country music catalogues of record labels Universal Music and predecessor companies acquired over the years including ABC Records, Decca Records, Dot Records, DreamWorks Records, Kapp Records, MGM Records and Polydor Records.[1]

Universal Music Group Nashville
Parent companyUniversal Music Group
  • MCA Nashville (1945)
  • Mercury Nashville (1945)
  • Capitol Nashville (1950)
  • EMI Records Nashville (2010)
  • Lost Highway (2000)
Distributor(s)Universal Music Distribution
Country of originUnited States
LocationNashville, Tennessee
Official websiteumgnashville.com

MCA Nashville

MCANashville Logo

MCA Nashville started out as the country music division of Decca Records in 1945, founded by Paul Cohen[2] in New York. In 1947, Cohen hired Owen Bradley as his assistant working in Nashville. The country music division moved to Nashville in 1955 as much of the country music recording business was locating there.[3] Bradley succeeded Cohen as head of Decca's Nashville division in 1958[4] and developed Decca into a country music powerhouse. Decca Nashville was renamed MCA Nashville in 1973.

In 1979, MCA Nashville absorbed the country music roster (including Roy Clark, Barbara Mandrell and The Oak Ridge Boys) and back catalogue of ABC Records including the Dot Records catalogue. In the early 1980s, MCA Nashville signed Reba McEntire[5] and George Strait,[6] two of the greatest selling artists of all time and the mega stars on the record label.

In the 1990s MCA Nashville briefly revived the Decca label for country music releases, but it was shut down after Universal Music absorbed PolyGram and chose to reserve the Decca name for classical music releases. While Decca resumed issuing country music in February 2008, the current Decca country music department has no connection with UMG Nashville. However, MCA Nashville continues to reissue past country releases from Decca, as well as those on the Kapp label.

With the absorption of MCA Records into Geffen Records in 2003, MCA Nashville, apart from UMG's operations in the Philippines, is now the only unit of Universal Music to still use the MCA name.

Current Artists
Kassi Ashton
Jordan Davis
Clare Dunn
Vince Gill
Sam Hunt
Kip Moore
Kacey Musgraves
George Strait
Josh Turner

Mercury Nashville


The still active Mercury Records was formed in Chicago in 1945 issuing recordings in a variety of genres including country music.[7] The Nashville office of Mercury began as a joint venture between Mercury and "Pappy" Daily's established country music record label Starday Records in January 1957. In July 1958, the Mercury/Starday joint venture was dissolved and Starday record producer Shelby Singleton stayed on with Mercury in Nashville, becoming head of Mercury's Nashville office by 1961. Singleton left Mercury in 1966 to form his own company which bought Sun Records in 1969.[8]

In 1997, PolyGram, which owned Mercury, consolidated all its Nashville operations under the Mercury name.

When PolyGram was purchased by Universal Music Group in 1998, the resulting record label consolidations left Mercury under The Island Def Jam Music Group umbrella making Mercury in the USA dormant until recently, but still active internationally. The consolidations in Nashville which created UMG Nashville kept the Mercury Nashville imprint active.

Reissues of country music recordings first issued on the MGM, Polydor, and other former PolyGram labels bear the Mercury Nashville imprint (with some exceptions).

Current Artists
Lauren Alaina
Billy Currington
Travis Denning
Maddie & Tae
Chris Stapleton
Shania Twain

Capitol Records Nashville

Capitol Records Nashville is a major United States-based record label located in Nashville Tennessee operating as part of the Capitol Music Group. Capitol Nashville was formerly known as Liberty Records from 1991 until 1995 when it was changed back to Capitol. In 1993 Liberty opened a sister label, Patriot Records, but it was closed in 1995. In 1999 EMI launched Virgin Records Nashville but by 2001 Capitol absorbed the short-lived label. Capitol Nashville remained a stand- alone label until 2010 when it launched EMI Nashville. Capitol Nashville is also home to several successful comedy artist's who remain on their roster today. On March 23, 2011, Alan Jackson signed with Capitol's EMI Nashville division in conjunction with his own ACR Records label. In late 2012 Capitol Records Nashville became part of the Universal Music Group after a merger between EMI and UMG.

Current Artists
Dierks Bentley
Luke Bryan
Mickey Guyton
Adam Hambrick
Caylee Hammack
Little Big Town
Jon Pardi
Darius Rucker
Carrie Underwood
Keith Urban

EMI Records Nashville

EMI Records Nashville was formed in 2010 and served as a sister label to Capitol Records Nashville. Its flagship artist was Troy Olsen. Other artists signed to EMI include Eric Church and Alan Jackson (in a shared agreement with his own ACR Records). Universal Music Group acquired EMI in 2012. EMI is currently a part of UMG along with sister label Capitol Records Nashville.

Current Artists
Gary Allan
Brothers Osborne
Eric Church
Alan Jackson
Jon Langston
Brandon Lay

Lost Highway Records

Losthighway logo

Lost Highway Records was formed by Luke Lewis in 2000. Lost Highway Records operates as a country music label, based out of Nashville. The label also issues music by alternative rock and alternative country artists such as Morrissey and Ryan Adams. The company's name was inspired by a Leon Payne song. Today the label operates as an imprint of Mercury Records, a division of The Island Def Jam Music Group. Lost Highway has distributed the soundtracks for O Brother, Where Art Thou?, Deadwood, and Open Season by Paul Westerberg. They have also acted as distributor for albums from Johnny Cash and Hank Williams.

Buena Vista Records

Formed in April 2017 Buena Vista Records is a partnership between Disney Music Group and Universal Music Group Nashville.

Current Artists
Temecula Road

External links


  1. ^ American Chronicle | Yesterday and Today with Universal Music Group
  2. ^ Paul Cohen
  3. ^ Dugg Collins Legends of Music Page
  4. ^ Nielsen Business Media, Inc. (April 21, 1958). Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. pp. 18–. ISSN 00062510 Parameter error in {{issn}}: Invalid ISSN..
  5. ^ "Reba McEntire". Country Music Hall of Fame. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
  6. ^ "George Strait Biography & History". AllMusic. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
  7. ^ Country Music On The Mercury Label - Various Artists
  8. ^ Take Note 243
35 Biggest Hits

35 Biggest Hits is a two-disc greatest hits album from American country music artist Toby Keith. It was released on May 6, 2008. The album comprises thirty-four previously recorded tracks (18 tracks on Disc 1 and 17 on Disc 2) from Keith's previous studio albums, as well as the newly recorded track "She's a Hottie", which was released to radio in early 2008. The album does not include any material from Keith's 2007 album Big Dog Daddy.

This compilation is the first to span Keith's entire career; it was able to do so because Universal Music Group Nashville owned (either outright or through distribution) the rights to his entire catalog. The album has sold 1,210,900 copies in the United States as of January 2017.

Capitol Records Nashville

Capitol Records Nashville is a major United States-based record label located in Nashville, Tennessee operating as part of the Universal Music Group Nashville. From 1991 to 1995, Capitol Nashville was known as Liberty Records, before returning to the Capitol Nashville name in 1995. While under the Liberty name, the label operated short-lived sister label Patriot Records from 1994 to 1995. In 1999, EMI launched Virgin Records Nashville but by 2001, Capitol absorbed the short-lived label. In 2010, the label launched sister label EMI Nashville. On March 23, 2011, Alan Jackson signed with Capitol's EMI Nashville division in conjunction with his own ACR Records label.

Capitol Nashville was also home to several successful comedy artists.

Clare Dunn

Clare Dunn is an American country musician from southeast Colorado. After support from satellite radio as a "Highway Find" on The Highway (Sirius XM), she signed with Universal Music Group Nashville and BMG. She has opened for many notable country acts such as Florida Georgia Line, Chris Young, Miranda Lambert, Keith Urban, Hank Williams, Jr., and Trace Adkins.

List of Universal Music Group Nashville artists

This is a list of artists on Universal Music Group Nashville. Universal Music Group Nashville comprises the Nashville branches of MCA Records, Mercury Records and Capitol Records, as well as Lost Highway Records. Formerly, the company included the Nashville branch of DreamWorks Records.

List of Universal Music Group labels

Universal Music Group owns, or has a joint share in, a large number of record labels listed herein.

MCA Records

MCA Records was an American major record label owned by MCA Inc., which later gave way to the larger MCA Music Entertainment Group (now Universal Music Group), which the label was part of until its dissolution in 2003. The label's country division MCA Nashville is a still active imprint of Universal Music Group Nashville.

Still the Same (Sugarland song)

"Still the Same" is a song written and recorded by American country music duo Sugarland. It was released December 21, 2017 through Big Machine Records, serving as the group's first single in six years since and the lead single for their forthcoming sixth studio album, Bigger (2018). "Still the Same" is the group's first new release since their self-imposed hiatus announced in 2012. The song officially impacted American country radio on January 8, 2018; this release was promoted in collaboration between Big Machine and the Universal Music Group Nashville, which houses the group's former label, Mercury Nashville.

White Trash with Money

White Trash with Money (stylized as WHITE TRA$H WITH MONEY) is the tenth studio album by country music superstar Toby Keith, which was released on April 11, 2006. It is Keith's first album on his own Show Dog Nashville label, which was distributed by Universal Music Group Nashville, the owner of Keith's catalog up to that point. The album shipped platinum, meaning one million or more units were distributed to outlets ahead of its release.

It features 12 tracks, including 3 "Bus songs". Keith wrote or co-wrote all of the songs; co-writing credits go to his longtime writing partner, his friend Scotty Emerick, with several tracks also being co-written by Dean Dillon. Keith co-produced the album with Lari White. Three singles were released from it: "Get Drunk and Be Somebody", "A Little Too Late" and "Crash Here Tonight", which reached #3, #2, and #15, respectively, on the Hot Country Songs charts, making this the first studio album of Keith's career since 1997's "Dream Walkin'" not to produce any number one hits.

Music Group
Canal+ Group
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