Atlantic chooses Beggars in licensing-distrib pact

Atlantic Records added yet another alternative music label to its collection Tuesday, signing a licensing and distribution agreement with United Kingdom-based Beggars Banquet.

The label, whose roster includes the Charlatans UK and Polyphemus,has released albums by Gary Numan, the Cult, Bauhaus, Freeez, the Associates, Gene Loves Jezebel, the Fall and Buffalo Tom, among others.

Beggars Banquet was founded in 1977 and entered the U.S. market in 1979, then opened a U.S. office in 1987, overseen by managing director Peter Gordon. It entered into a U.S. distribution agreement with RCA Records that same year, a pact that ended earlier this year.

The label’s businesses also encompass the 4AD label (distributed through Warner Bros. in the U.S.), the XL label (distributed through American Recordings), the publishing arm Momentum Music (which goes through Warner/Chappell) and the U.K. distribution company RTM, which was formed by Beggars Banquet and Mute Records.

Atlantic has been pacting with numerous cutting-edge labels over the last three years, signing deals with Mammoth, Matador, Rhino and Delicious Vinyl.

Under terms of the Atlantic/Beggars agreement, a two-tiered system has been created. Selected Beggars Banquest artists will be marketed by the Atlantic Group — either via Atlantic Records or EastWest Records America — and distributed through WEA.

Other artists will be developed independently by Beggars Banquet and distributed via the Alternative Distribution Alliance, the independent distribution arm of Warner Music Group.

Beggars Banquet catalog will be distribbed in the U.S. by ADA.

First release under the new agreement will be the new album from Buffalo Tom, “Big Red Letter Day.” The album will be marketed by EastWest Records America through WEA and will hit stores Sept. 21.

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