Seymour Stein, Sire Records co-founder who signed The Ramones, Madonna and more, has died
Seymour Stein, the legendary music industry exec who founded Sire Records and signed The Ramones, Madonna, Talking Heads, The Smiths, and more, died on Sunday after a battle with cancer. He was 80.
His daughter Mandy Stein shared a statement with The Hollywood Reporter: “I grew up surrounded by music. I didn’t have the most conventional upbringing, but I wouldn’t change my life and my relationship with my dad for anything, and he was a loving and caring grandfather who took pleasure in every moment with his three granddaughters. He gave me the ultimate soundtrack, as well as his wicked sense of humor. I am beyond grateful for every minute our family spent with him, and that the music he brought to the world impacted so many people’s lives in a positive way.”
Having got his start as a teenager working Billboard, Stein co-founded Sire Records with Richard Gottehrer in 1966. The label really came into its own in the punk and new wave era after being acquired by Warner Brothers, and the acts the label signed also included The Replacements, Echo & The Bunnymen, Depeche Mode, Soft Cell, Ice-T, Ministry, k.d. lang, Erasure, The Go-Betweens, My Bloody Valentine, The Undertones, Primal Scream, Ride, and many more.
Rest easy, Seymour.
Read tributes from Madonna, Johnny Marr, and more below.