MCA Records upped Ron Oberman to executive VP of A&R Tuesday, replacing outgoing Paul Atkinson in that slot.

Oberman, who joined MCA from Columbia Records a little over six months ago, will be charged with energizing the moribund rock scene at the label, which Atkinson failed to do during his three-year tenure.

Atkinson resigned from the company on Friday by mutual agreement.

His accomplishments at MCA include the career resurrection of Patty Smyth.

Richard Palmese, president of MCA Records, said his new appointee “is a consummate record executive whose A&R talents and experience are well known. I am proud to appoint him to this new job where all of his skills will be utilized in heading up the vital A&R area.”

Oberman joins senior VP Michael Rosenblatt, who came to MCA last month, in the newly aligned A&R department.

Oberman will oversee the department, a job he had been doing in conjunction with Atkinson since his arrival, according to sources.

Oberman was formerly senior VP of A&R at MCA. While at Columbia, where he served as VP of A&R, West Coast, he signed such acts as the Bangles, Martika, Warrant and Toad the Wet Sprocket.

Oberman has already signed hot new Orange County-based act Water to MCA.

His resume includes time at Columbia as national director of publicity and West Coast marketing VP.

Oberman began his music industry career as publicity director for Mercury Records in Chicago and was formerly a reporter for the Washington (D.C.) Star, where he wrote a weekly pop music column.

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