The Island Def Jam Music Group

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The Island Def Jam Music Group
Parent company Universal Music Group
Founded 1999; 16 years ago (1999)
Defunct 2014; 1 year ago (2014)
Status Defunct
Distributor(s) Self-distributed
(In the US)
Virgin EMI Records
(In the UK)
Universal Music Group
Genre Various
Country of origin United States
Location New York City
Official website

The Island Def Jam Music Group (IDJMG) was an American record label group formed in 1999 when the Universal Music Group (UMG) merged two of its daughter companies Island Records and Def Jam Recordings. In 2011, Motown Records was split from the Universal Motown Republic Group and was subsequently merged into the Island Def Jam Music Group.[1][2] Barry Weiss served as Chairman and CEO of the company.[3] As of February 2014, artists on the IDJMG roster included Mariah Carey, Rihanna, Kanye West, 2 Chainz, and Iggy Azalea.[4] On April 1, 2014, following the resignation of CEO Barry Weiss, it was announced that Island Def Jam will divide into three separate entities: Def Jam Recordings, Island Records and Motown Records.


The IDJMG was formed in 1999 when UMG merged two of its daughter companies, Island Records and Def Jam Recordings, as a result of the merger between Universal Music and PolyGram. Also incorporated into the deal was the staff, roster, and back catalog of Mercury Records, which was dismantled for several years until it was revived as a new venture in 2007. Meanwhile, the labels Island Records and Def Jam Recordings continued and still continue to operate as their own respective labels as a part of the Island Def Jam Music Group umbrella (Island has concentrated on pop and rock performers, while Def Jam has most of the group's hip hop and R&B acts). The company also operated the Lost Highway Records label[5] and distributed New York, US label Photo Finish Records.

The IDJMG was one of four UMG umbrella labels in North America to market the works of primarily mainstream pop, rock, and urban performers—the other three being Interscope-Geffen-A&M, Capitol Music Group and Republic Records. In 2011, L.A. Reid stepped down as head of the company and was replaced by Weiss. On April 1, 2014, it was announced that Island Def Jam will no longer be running following the resigning of CEO Barry Weiss. In a press release by Universal Music Group, the label will now be reorganizing Def Jam Recordings, Island Records and Motown Records all as separate entities.[6]

Awards and accolades[edit]

According to the 2012 radio airplay analysis of music industry service Mediabase, IDJMG became the number-one rhythmic label with seven number one songs played on Rhythmic radio stations from Rihanna, Kanye West, Jay-Z, Ne-Yo, and Justin Bieber.[7]


Def Jam Recordings[edit]

Island Records[edit]

Mercury Records[edit]


  1. ^ "Ethiopia Habtemariam Named Senior Vice President of Motown Records | Billboard". 2011-08-10. Retrieved 2014-03-22. 
  2. ^ Sisario, Ben (2011-08-10). "A Young Music Executive Takes Over at Motown". The New York Times. 
  3. ^ "Barry Weiss Named Chairman/CEO Of Island Def Jam And Universal Motown Republic Group". 2011-03-17. Retrieved 2011-07-03. 
  4. ^ "Artists". Island Def Jam. Island Def Jam. 2014. Retrieved 8 February 2014. 
  5. ^ Geoffrey P. Hull; Thomas William Hutchison; Richard Strasser (2011). The Music Business and Recording Industry: Delivering Music in the 21st Century. Taylor & Francis. pp. 175–. ISBN 978-0-415-87560-8. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Mediabase Year-end Edition 2012" (PDF). Mediabase. Clear Communications, Inc. 2012. Retrieved 8 February 2014. 
  8. ^ "Artists | Artists". Island Def Jam. Retrieved 2014-03-22. 
  9. ^ "A&M : Artists". Retrieved 2014-03-22. 

External links[edit]