|This article does not cite any references or sources. (December 2009)|
|Parent company||Warner Music Group|
|Country of origin||UK|
Grainge began his career in the Record Business as a Sales Office assistant at Phonogram UK in 1970. After promotion to become US-affiliated labels Manager he was responsible for the marketing and chart success of many hits (some unlikely) by acts such as Faron Young, the Detroit Emeralds, The Stylistics, Chuck Berry, Rod Stewart (switching Maggie May from an original 'B' side), and eventually became the company's successful head of A&R from 1974 to 1976. He directly signed Thin Lizzy, 10cc, The Steve Miller Band, and a worldwide license for the successful All Platinum label (hits by Shirley & Co, the Moments, etc.), among others, before deciding to leave and set up his own independent label, duly funded by Phonogram.
Ensign had early success with The Boomtown Rats in 1977, who went on to have 13 UK Top 20 entries including two number 1's - "Rat Trap" and "I Don't Like Mondays". Ensign also had a constant stream of UK and European hits with Flash and the Pan, Eddy Grant, Light of the World (band), and Phil Fearon & Galaxy. Grainge's cohort throughout the life of the label was London DJ Chris Hill.
Grainge sold the company to Chrysalis Records in 1984 and continued to run it from their own offices in Notting Hill until the mid-90s. The roster had reached its most credible peak with Sinéad O'Connor, The Waterboys, World Party, and the Blue Aeroplanes.
By 1990, millions of records had been sold by O'Connor, the biggest success being "Nothing Compares 2 U" which hit number one in over 30 countries.
After EMI acquired Chrysalis Records in 1991, Grainge felt stifled by the Corporate changes and requested to leave the company, and the label was thus folded into its parent. With the acquisition of the EMI group by Universal in 2012 the ownership of the Ensign catalogue of artists has now passed to the Warner Music group.
Hill continues to DJ in the London area, and Grainge relocated in 2002 to Santa Monica, California, to pursue A&R consultancies and Web ventures, utilizing his vast digital music and video library.