Amazon Hires Former Apple, EMI Exec Alex Luke for Music Programming

Alex Luke Amazon
Luke: Courtesy of Alex Luke

Here’s another sign that Amazon is getting ready to double down on music streaming: The company has hired former Apple and EMI Music executive Alex Luke as Global Head of Programming & Content Strategy for its Amazon Music service.

Luke is joining Amazon from The Valley Fund, a Silicon Valley VC shop. Before that, he worked for two years as EVP of A&R at EMI. The major had poached him in 2011 from Apple, where he had been working as Director of Music Programming & Label Relations for eight years. Previous stints also included jobs at radio stations, and some work at music streaming service Napster.

Amazon launched it own paid streaming service to take on Apple Music and Spotify last October. Before that, Amazon was offering Prime subscribers a limited music streaming experience as part of their yearly membership fee. The company has also for some time offered paid MP3 downloads, and has long been one of the largest music retailers in the world, thanks to its CD business.

Amazon’s secret weapon in the music streaming wars has been its Echo smart speaker, which has been selling like hotcakes.The company hasn’t released any official sales numbers for the device, but market researchers estimated that it had sold 5 million by last November.

The Echo is closely integrated with Amazon Music, allowing consumers to request songs and playlists with simple voice commands. Amazon is also using the device as an upsell, offering consumers to access a Echo-only tier of its streaming service for $4 a month.

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 2


    Leave a Reply


    Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

    You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

    Google+ photo

    You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

    Connecting to %s

    1. Gizmo401 says:

      Maybe he’ll let some of Led Zeppelin’s catalog back on Prime Music instead of all of it being moved to the Unlimited service. Among many other artists..

    2. Nancy Roberson says:

      No one knows music like Alex Luke!

    More Digital News from Variety