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Music honcho Lyor Cohen played hardball with YouTube for years then shocked everyone by joining the enemy. Here's how he stayed on top and why he says it's time haters 'liberate' themselves

Posted On: May 22, 2018   |   Posted By: Business Insider

Music honcho Lyor Cohen played hardball with YouTube for years then shocked everyone by joining the enemy. Here's how he stayed on top and why he says it's time haters 'liberate' themselves

Lyor Cohen spent 30 years in the recorded-music industry and then after witnessing the rise of digital distribution, he swapped sides. As YouTube's global head of music , he is overseeing the launch of YouTube's new subscription service .
Cohen isn't just a former music industry insider. He waged a bare-knuckled public-relations fight against YouTube a decade ago when the two companies failed to come to terms on a licensing deal.
Cohen's renaissance as a digital executive may seem ironic, but it holds some valuable lessons for startup founders, media executives or anyone wishing to remake their career.
On the day Lyor Cohen resigned as Chairman and CEO of Warner Music Group in September 2012, he appeared headed for obscurity.
I covered digital music back then, during the blackest period in the history of recorded music. The rise of digital distribution and music piracy had chopped annual revenue in half, from $14 billion to $7 billion. The top five recording companies were reduced to three.
During the...

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