On Capitol’s Conscience

First, several staff members were let go of their Capitol Records positions, then songstress Tanya Tucker decided she’d cut herself out of the Capitol family. It was only a matter of time before John Berry opted to leave. Berry, quite cryptically, explained he was “looking for new input and challenges” in a news release, but observers believe Berry left Capitol over the label’s attention to Garth Brooks. Even before Tucker departed the label, there had been several publicized accounts of the extravagant amount of promotional money and staff time currently being funneled towards Brooks–Capitol’s primary record seller.
Like Tucker, Berry apparently believes it’s better to cut ties and start anew rather than stay where he’s not fully appreciated. Capitol Nashville chief Pat Quigley says, however, that Capitol Records will have sold 25 million Garth Brooks albums by year’s end — between Sevens, the box set and Brooks’ forthcoming double-CD live album is scheduled for a November 17th release. The disc, tentatively titled Garth: Double Live, will contain at least 25 songs. To promote the new project, the singer is planning a couple of television specials.

“It’s the most profitable year in the history of Capitol Records in Nashville,” he told the Nashville Scene. While the success has apparently grown, so does Quigley criticism continue to grow as well.