Stormzy may have forced Atlantic Records UK boss Ben Cook to quit over 'blackface' controversy
Last year, a photo of Atlantic Records UK president Ben Cook in blackface at a staff fancy dress party was posted to Facebook. The party, which took place seven years ago and was themed to guests' musical icons, was attended by Cook dressed as a member of Run-DMC, the all-black American hip-hop group. The photo was then swiftly deleted and Cook was subsequently disciplined.
On Wednesday October 16, however, Cook stepped down from his position at the label - where he had worked for 12 years - after UK rapper Stormzy, who is signed to Atlantic, reportedly threatened to quit the label in protest.
According to a report in The Sun, Stormzy banned Cook from standing near the stage at his headline Glastonbury performance in June and is said to have told senior figures at Warner Music, the parent company of Atlantic, that he would leave the label if Cook was not fired.
Cook, who is credited with having launched Ed Sheeran's career after giving him his first record label, as well as signing Stormzy and Rita Ora, released a statement in response to his departure:
"It is with great sadness that today I announce I am stepping down as president of Atlantic Records UK," he said.
Atlantic Records boss Ben Cook is to step down. The President of Atlantic Records, the major label boss is widely regarded as one of the most powerful figures in music. However he will step down from his
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