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Jac Holzman, the founder and chief executive of Elektra and Nonesuch Records, was born on this date in 1931. He created Elektra out of his dorm room at St. John’s University in 1950, and in the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s signed such acts as the Doors, the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Judy Collins, Carly Simon, Phil Ochs, Tom Paxton, Josh White (who was suffering from the McCarthy blacklist), Tim Buckley, Love, MC5, and the Stooges. Nonesuch, launched in 1965, became the best-selling classical music label of the era and, thanks to its relationship to Elektra, brought many rock-and-roll fans to classical music. Holzman has also been a pioneer in the fields of cable television and home video games. In 2011, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
“The Internet provides a feedback loop: a continuing conversation between an artist and their audience, not intermediated by gatekeepers who have something to sell.” —Jac Holzman