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Anderson.Paak Pacts With Doug Morris’ New 12 Tone Label

Anderson.Paak has inked with Doug Morris’ new 12 Tone label, a source close to the situation confirms to Variety. The highly touted rapper, who is signed to Dr. Dre’s Aftermath label, is currently enjoying a big look with the smooth electro-R&B of his new song “Till It’s Over,” featured in a wild Spike Jonze-directed Apple Homepod clip that features FKA Twigs as a dancer.

The 31-year-old California-born rapper/producer/songwriter released a pair of albums as Breezy Lovejoy before dropping his critically acclaimed “Malibu” album in 2014, following with “Venice” less than 18 months later. Later in 2016 he released the “Yes Lawd” album with producer Knxledge under the name NxWorries. He has also earned a name as a magnetic live performer, backed by his band the Free Nationals; Dre joined Paak onstage in London earlier this month for a brief medley of his “Still D.R.E.” and “The Next Episode.”

Morris, the only person to be the top executive at all three major music companies, will exit his post as non-executive chairman of Sony Music Entertainment and launch 12 Tone at the end of March, sources tell Variety. Former Def Jam CEO Steve Bartels, who stepped down at the end of 2017, will be joining Morris.

While some reports said the new label is part of an unspecified partnership with Apple, a source close to the situation told Variety that those rumors are untrue and that Apple has no equity or investment in Morris’ endeavor. Morris’ exit from Sony completes a long transition that began with former Columbia Records CEO Rob Stringer being announced as Morris’ successor as CEO of Sony MusicEntertainment in October of 2016 and officially taking the reins last April.

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