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Narada Productions
Narada Productions

Narada is a record label formed in 1983 as an independent New-age music label[1] and distributed by MCA. A fully owned subsidiary of Universal Music Group and distributed by Capitol Music Group's Blue Note Records, the label evolved through an expansion of formats to include world music, jazz, Celtic music, new flamenco, acoustic guitar, and piano genre releases.

Label history

In 1979, John Morey started a mail-order business to sell New-age music. This led to the creation of Narada in Milwaukee in 1983. After signing the musician Yanni, who often had records on the New-age chart, Virgin bought Narada in 1997. The latter's roster included David Arkenstone, Jesse Cook, Michael Gettel, Michael Jones, David Lanz, Oscar Lopez, and Billy McLaughlin.[2]

During the late 1980s and early 1990s, Narada created several sub-label imprints to differentiate its offerings, in particular Sona Gaia, Antiquity Records, Rising Sun Records, Narada World, Narada Equinox, Narada Jazz, and Narada Mystique. Since the acquisition, Narada was the principal U.S. licensee for Peter Gabriel's Real World Records[3] until 2008. The sub-labels of Narada were retired and their albums folded into the company's main imprint, Narada.

Higher Octave, also acquired by EMI in 1997,[2] was absorbed into Narada in 2004 as a sub-label retaining its imprint but not its staff. Higher Octave's roster of artists and albums was significantly reduced as part of this merger. During the first few years of the decade, Narada created a short-lived sub-label titled Shakti Records for releasing electronic music, but this imprint had little activity and was dropped as Narada concentrated on contemporary jazz. Back Porch (folk and Americana music) was also acquired by EMI in 1997 and became a sub-label imprint under the Narada umbrella.

In 2005, Narada was named No. 4 in the 2005 top four contemporary jazz labels in Billboard magazine's year-end charts.

In 2006, Narada was moved by EMI from its original location in the Milwaukee suburb of Glendale, Wisconsin, to EMI's headquarters in New York City to become part of the expanded role for Blue Note with EMI,[4] which is to function as EMI's consolidated label group for music for adults.

Additional labels joining Blue Note in this function are Mosaic, Capitol Jazz, Roulette Jazz, Pacific Jazz, Manhattan, Angel, and Metro Blue. They will continue to use their existing imprints. As part of this consolidation, Narada's involvement with new-age music was reduced with Narada's focus narrowed to mainly contemporary jazz, while Narada's new-age music content migrated to sister label Higher Octave.


Compilation albums

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