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#1 lyricgenius


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Posted 06 November 2008 - 05:10 AM

I found this interesting article (from 2006) about Lucian Grainge, the boss of Amy's record company. It's horrendous what happened to his first wife.

Take That in concert.... for 13-year-old's birthday party
Last updated at 20:35 02 December 2006

It was the kind of showbiz coup very, very few people could hope to pull off - persuading two of Britain's best-known groups, Take That and the Sugababes, to perform for an audience of just 200 party guests.
But then the host was Lucian Grainge, the boss of Britain's largest record label and one of the most respected moguls in pop.
His glamorous black-tie party, at London's exclusive Nobu Berkeley restaurant, was to celebrate the bar mitzvah of his 13-year-old son Elliot.
But behind the fabulous party was a poignant story. Each of the guests knew that Mr Grainge had raised his son alone after his wife Samantha suffered a tragic accident during the birth, falling into a coma as her brain became starved of oxygen.
She survived, and remains in what her parents describe as a 'waking coma', able to hear and sense her surroundings but unable to speak.
Yet despite - or perhaps because of - the tragedy, Mr Grainge has determinedly worked his way up from nothing to become chairman and chief executive of Universal Music Group's international division while raising Elliot on his own - earning the admiration of friends and colleagues.
So the 45-year-old music mogul and proud father - who joined the music industry as a teenager, plugging records to radio stations - wanted to make his son's coming-of-age celebration a sensational event.
He picked one of London's most exclusive restaurants, popular with Roman Abramovich, Christina Aguilera and Victoria Beckham, and invited guests including X Factor impresario Simon Cowell, who once called Mr Grainge 'the most talented executive in the British pop industry'.
Not all Mr Grainge's friends could be there last Saturday. U2's Bono sent a video message, as he had when Mr Grainge married his second wife Caroline in 2002, as did Eminem and Sophie Ellis-Bextor.
The highlight of the evening was the performance from Take That, a band who owe their revived career in part to Mr Grainge's belief in them. One music industry executive said: "There are few nicer men in the industry. He has tremendous energy and enthusiasm. The problem with his wife hit him hard, but he's very robust."
Mr Grainge met Samantha, a solicitor, in 1992 and they married in January 1993. But in November that year, tragedy struck.
Samantha's parents, Mervyn and Edwina Berg, paid tribute to their daughter, whom they visit every day at her nursing home.
Edwina said: "Samantha is in a waking coma. She can hear and is aware of her surroundings, but she can't talk or communicate. She can't see and she can't move. It is like being in a dream - or a nightmare.
"Sometimes when we joke about something that happened in her past she seems to laugh. But she won't have memories since the accident."
Her father Mervyn said: "She was the most effervescent and outgoing person that you could meet. She loved the fact she was going to be a mother. She was a beautiful girl in love with life."

Top: Samantha Grainge. Below: Lucian Grainge and his second wife Caroline
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#2 pearljo



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Posted 06 November 2008 - 12:11 PM

I can't think of anything worse than what that lady is going through.

#3 Rockesquirrel


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Posted 06 November 2008 - 01:18 PM

I knew there was something that made Lucian Grainge the compassionate guy he is today. I pray that his daughter finally awakens to appreciate life.
In this life, we each create our own heaven and hell. (Conversation overhead on the bus)

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#4 Lainey


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Posted 03 March 2010 - 09:59 PM

Article from 'TIME' on Lucian Grainge.


Will Universal Music's New Boss Keep the Hits Coming?

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Lucian Grainge's management style is not short on theatrical flourish. Four years ago, the Briton who is about to become the world's most powerful music industry executive, arrived late to the boardroom of Universal Music Group's international head office in London after the company had suffered a particularly poor sales period. As he entered, he turned off the lights, leaving his executive team sitting nervously in the dark. He then paced around the room until finally uttering the words: "See that. Better get used to it. That's what it's like when you don't have any hit records."

New York will have to get used to Grainge this summer when the 49-year-old takes over as head of Universal Music worldwide, the largest record company on the planet with a market share of nearly 29% and such acts in its stable as U2, Lady Gaga, Eminem and Amy Winehouse. Grainge has been groomed for the role for several years and says his fingers will remain close to the light switch. "It will depend if they have any hits or not," he tells TIME.

Grainge is one of a trio of talented British music executives — all born within six months of each other — who have landed at the heart of the industry, even though none had any college education. Simon Cowell, the elder of the group and the only one who has turned 50, is perhaps the most famous name in the business, with a television and music operation that generates significant profits for rival Sony Music. Simon Fuller, the youngest, is the impresario who devised American Idol and managed the Spice Girls.

Grainge, though, describes himself as "the powerful one." He may not appear on television, but the turn-off-the-lights story is typical of a man who is both fiercely competitive and entertainingly playful. He chases artists signed to other music companies with fervor, personally persuading the Rolling Stones to switch over from rival record company EMI two years ago. And once he's wooed acts, he can keep them on board — no small achievement in an industry not short of ego. When he was honored at London's Grosvenor Hotel with a Music Industry Trust Award in November 2008, he was feted by some of the biggest names in the business. Bono and the rest of U2 presented the award, Take That performed, and Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus, the male half of ABBA, tried to outbid British rock band Snow Patrol in the fundraising auction that followed.

Paul McGuinness, the manager of U2, probably Universal's biggest single act, has worked with Grainge for decades. "Making it in the United States is the biggest challenge of all for any British talent in the music business. He will need all his intelligence and skill to pull it off," he says. At a time when many major acts are breaking away from Universal, U2 has stayed loyal to the label, in part because Grainge has earned the respect of the band. "Lucian's advantage is that he has got a strong musical record of his own, so his opinion on a song, as well as business, is taken seriously," McGuinness says.

That comes from a long career working his way up through the London music scene. After leaving school at the age of 18, he started as a runner at a talent-scout company called MPC and says he was so junior he was "getting the secretaries sandwiches." Desperate for a job in music, he started cold-calling record-label bosses in the Music Week directory until he got through by chance to Maurice Oberstein, a senior executive at CBS Records. His persistence was rewarded with a job in the company's artists and repertoire (A&R) division, hunting for new songwriters and building their careers. Soon after, he moved over to RCA to do the same job and scored his first hit single in the U.S. — Olivia Newton-John's "Heart Attack," which was written by a Briton he had signed, Paul Bliss.

In 1986, Grainge joined Polygram's songwriting division and gradually moved up the ranks at the company, which would later become Universal following a merger with MCA. Eventually, under the tutelage of Doug Morris, the Universal chief executive he'll be replacing, Grainge rose to run the company's U.K. headquarters and then its international operations. As EMI has faltered in recent years, he has become a key force behind helping British acts break into the U.S. market, most notably, the troubled Winehouse. (Read a TIME profile of Amy Winehouse.)

Grainge's plans for his new position remain somewhat of a mystery. His approach emphasizes artist relations at a time when other companies would rather talk about formulating an effective digital-distribution strategy to combat music piracy. It's not that Grainge doesn't care about this issue — indeed, he wants the U.S. to become tougher on piracy. He says, however, that there is "no platinum-tipped magic bullet" to solve the problem. One thing that will help: forming a coalition of music, film and publishing companies to lobby both Congress and Internet service providers to enact tougher sanctions against music pirates. "English-speaking content has most to lose [from file-sharing]," he says.

As for expanding Universal Music's operations, he wants to turn it into a "content-owning rights company," which means developing television and film formats to vie with the two Simons' TV franchises: Fuller's American Idol and Cowell's soon-to-be-arriving X Factor, which is already a big hit in Britain. Among Universal's television projects in Britain is a show called Popstar to Operastar, which features Meatloaf as a judge of La Scala wannabes. And on the theater front, Universal is backing Judy Kramer, the producer of the stage and film musical Mamma Mia!, in her efforts to create a musical about the Spice Girls called Viva Forever.

Whether either format produces the next Susan Boyle remains to be seen. But if anybody is going to keep the lights on in the U.S. music business, it's likely to be Grainge.

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