Chris Atlas has been promoted to executive vp, urban music & marketing for Warner Records, following a three-year tenure as the label’s senior vp, head of urban marketing. Based at the company’s Downtown Los Angeles headquarters, Atlas reports to Warner’s co-chairman/COO Tom Corson.
“With 25 years in this business, Chris’s breadth of experience and knowledge is extraordinary, and he has forged deep relationships throughout the industry,” said Corson in a statement. “Since joining us [in 2017], he has created and driven a series of brilliant, cultural, groundbreaking campaigns that have broken artists and set long-term careers in motion. Chris’s authenticity, passion and insight have made him one of the most admired execs across the music and marketing worlds. [Co-chairman/CEO] Aaron Bay-Schuck and I are thrilled to announce his new post on our leadership team.”
Atlas, also a member of Warner Music Group’s newly created Executive Diversity & Inclusion Council, has strategized and led marketing campaigns for Warner Records’ growing R&B/rap roster. In addition to recently signed 13-year-old Keedron Bryant, who garnered viral attention for his George Floyd-inspired anthem “I Just Wanna Live,” Atlas has devised campaigns for NLE Choppa, Saweetie, Wale, Andra Day, IDK, YFN Lucci and Shordie, Shordie as well as OVO Sound/Warner artists PartyNextDoor, dvsn and Roy Woods.
“I’m very proud of all that we’ve accomplished to build Warner Records’ presence throughout the urban and hip-hop communities,” said Atlas. “I’m driven by our artists and their music, and blessed to be able to contribute to the culture because I’m a student of it. Black and Urban music have always been reflective of our times, our society and what people are going through – their struggles, pain, happiness. It was important for me to keep the word urban in my title as it remains present and dominant, and continues to evolve. I want to thank Tom and Aaron for this amazing opportunity to keep moving the culture forward.”
Before joining Warner, Atlas was executive vp of marketing for Def Jam Recordings where he worked on campaigns for Kanye West, Rick Ross, Young Jeezy, Jhené Aiko and Ludacris. Atlas launched his industry career at Tommy Boy Records, advancing to A&R and founder of Tommy Boy Black Label as well as GM of urban music promotion. Leaving to join Cornerstone Agency as vp of urban promotion and marketing in 2001, he later moved on to Amp’d Mobile. From there, he returned to Cornerstone as vp of strategic marketing before segueing to Def Jam in 2008.