At his West Hollywood home on Thursday night, Andre Harrell, the founder of Uptown Records, died of heart failure. He was 59 years old and his ex-wife confirmed his death. Many artists, like Mary J. Blige and Heavy D and the Boyz, relied on Harrell for their success.
With his Uptown Records label, he established himself as one of the most influential R&B labels of the 1990s by establishing a niche for musicians that were both smart and streetwise. Andre O’Neal Harrell was born on September 26th, 1960, in the Bronx, New York, United States. He attended Baruch College and Lehman College after graduating from Charles Evans Hughes High School in 1978.
Harrell passed away on May 7th, 2020, in his West Hollywood, California, home. He was 76 years old. He was 59 years old, and D-Nice first announced his death on Instagram. According to Harrell’s ex-wife Wendy Credle, the man died as a result of heart difficulties.
On September 26, 1960, Harrell was born in the Bronx neighborhood of New York City. His father, Bernie, worked at a vegetable store in the Bronx’s Hunts Point borough; his mother, Hattie, worked as a nurse’s aide at a hospital in the neighborhood. It is said that Harrell and a high school classmate named Alonzo Brown founded the Dr. Jeckyll & Mister Hyde rap duo while they were still teenagers. The duo had modest success singles with 1981’s “Genius Rap” and 1984’s “AM/PM,” respectively.
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Charles Evans Hughes High School graduated Harrell in 1978. Aspiring to be a newscaster one day, he first attended Baruch College, then Lehman College, where he double-majored in communications and business management. In his third year, he dropped out and got a job at a radio station in his hometown.
Harrell first met Def Jam Records co-founder Russell Simmons in 1983. Def Jam hired him and he rose quickly through the ranks to vice president and general manager within a short period of time. Uptown Records was formed by Harrell after he departed Def Jam after a few years of service.
Combs was discovered and signed by Harrell, who is credited with discovering and signing the rapper. Mary J. Blige covered Anita Baker’s “Caught Up in the Rapture” in 1988 in a mall recording booth. Her mother’s boyfriend at the time, Jeff Redd, a recording artist and A&R runner for Uptown Records, later played the cassette for him.
Tom Harrell, Redd sent it. Harrell met with Blige as a result of this. As the label’s youngest and first female solo artist, she was signed in 1989. He was given a record deal with MCA Music Entertainment Group in 1988 and accepted it. A multi-media deal with MCA, which included film and television productions, was made available to Harrell in 1992 after he had a string of successful albums. Both the feature picture Strictly Business and the popular police drama New York Undercover, both of which aired on FOX from 1994 to 1998, was created by them.
Renamed Uptown Records, Harrell’s records were used in Universal Pictures and Universal Television projects. Harrell and Wendy Credle, an attorney in the music industry, had a son in 1994. So, he was given the name Gianni Credle-Harrell.
Andre Harrell’s Net Worth
American record and film producer Andre Harrell had a fortune of $50 million when he passed away in 2020.
Many musicians and executives got their start in their careers because of his work at Uptown Records, which was founded by him. As an intern at Uptown, Andre encountered Sean “Diddy” Combs, who went on to become Vice President of the company within a few years. Because of this, Andre died on May 8, 2020, at the age of 59.