Best Music Spotlight

Climb to the Top of the Music Publishing World with Jacobs Ladder Music

Photograph of the blog post author, Mary Woodcock

Mary Woodcock


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Having worked at EMI Music Publishing, the biggest and most successful music publisher in the world, Allen Jacobs decided to set up Jacobs Ladder Music. JLM is a small but perfectly-proportioned publishing company and Allen’s ethos is to work with anyone who creates music that he really likes and believes in. He is dedicated to helping make a difference to his artists’ careers and although he isn’t actively looking for new songs or songwriters he is always open to persuasion!

The company has been running since 2003 and now proudly represents over 500 songs and instrumentals with recordings ranging from UB40 to Slash’s Snakepit. Allen has always worked in or close to music publishing. He joined EMI Music Publishing from college, spending a couple of years at Peer Music and then as a band manager before rejoining EMI in 1985 where he became Senior VP of A&R. He signed Simple Minds and Adam & The Ants and went on to work with Dexy’s Midnight Runners, Squeeze, The Style Council, Prefab Sprout, Kirsty MacColl, Gary Clark and Lewis Taylor among many more. Not a bad resumé so far is it!

During the nineties he signed Craig Armstrong, Billie Myers, Lauren Christie of The Matrix and Andrew Frampton while changing his emphasis toward the songwriters, placing songs, setting up collaborations and sourcing music for film and television. He had songs recorded by Celine Dion, Paul Young, Chaka Khan, Joe Cocker, Aswad and Kenny Thomas alongside a number of significant European artists including Patricia Kaas, Ophelie Winter, Six Was Nine and Sanne Salomonsen.

As well as running his own publishing company, Allen also does lecturing at Canterbury Christ Church University in the UK, where he teaches music publishing and record label management for students on the Music Industry Management degree course as well as overseeing the University record label C3U Records, which is run with the students. He is also currently adapting ‘The Plain & Simple Guide to Music Publishing’ by American publisher and author Randall Wixen for publication in the UK next year.

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