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Gary Overton To Exit Sony Nashville

NASHVILLE, TN (CelebrityAccess) — Sony Music Entertainment announced that Gary Overton will leave his post as Chairman and CEO of Sony Music Nashville at the end of March.

“Working at Sony Music has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my career,” Overton said in the press release announcing his departure. “I will deeply miss the talented team at SMN, but I am also excited about starting the next chapter of my career. I want to thank the amazing staff for their tireless commitment to supporting our incredible artists.”

Overton has been a the helm of Sony Nashville since 2010, following a 15-year stint at EMI Music Publishing, where he served as vice president and general manager. Recently, he sparked controversy over a February interview with the Tennessean where he suggested that airplay on country radio was crucial, telling the paper You can ask people in the building, and I can be quoted several times a day,''If you're not on country radio, you don't exist.' Again I can't think of one star, much less superstar in country music, who wasn't broken by country radio. It's just a fact."

Overton's comments drew sharp responses from artists including country artist Charlie Robison, who, in a Facebook post, took Overton to task for his comments, saying "Saying that music does not exist unless it's on the radio is like saying you don't exist because you never got laid until you got your two week job as the head of Walmart Records." – Staff Writers