Tide goes all out at Universal music

Competition in country music leads to label closure

Citing a “recent proliferation of new Nashville labels,” Universal Music Group on Tuesday shuttered Rising Tide Records, the Music City outpost of the Doug Morris/Mel Lewinter-led label. The pair bowed the new label, topped by Ken Levitan, before becoming chieftains of UMG.

The constriction of the country music marketplace was also cited as a factor for the cost-cutting move.

Some acts on the roster, which boasts Dolly Parton and Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, among others, will be shuttled to MCA Nashville/Decca Records. The shift allows for a concentration of manpower and resources through one label system.

The closure mirrors similar shifts by other Nashville-based labels.

Arista Nashville recently shuttered sister label Career Records in response to the highly competitive marketplace and shrinking number of airplay slots doled out by country radio programmers.

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