Legendary music exec Andre Harrell was found dead at his apartment on Friday, May 8 at the age of 59.
Harrell founded Uptown Records in 1986, where he launched the careers of Mary J. Blige, Robin Thicke, Jodeci, Anthony Hamilton, Teddy Riley and more. In 1995, he became the president and CEO of Motown Records. As a mentor to Diddy, he later went on to work side-by-side with the rap mogul as president of Bad Boy Records and later, vice chairman of Revolt TV & Media.
After the news broke many celebs who had the opportunity to work close with him shared their thoughts on the music legend.
Andre Harrell always dressed like a mogul. Hip-Hop was in its infancy. I can only imagine the respectability politics at the time...— Shelby Ivey Christie (@bronze_bombSHEL) May 9, 2020
I think the optics of him, in the music industry, said something. To me it was — Just bcuz it’s “urban” doesn’t mean its not real business 👔💼💰 pic.twitter.com/LdS4MZhsgU
Ohhh noooo!— Holly Robinson Peete😷🥰 (@hollyrpeete) May 9, 2020
So sorry to hear this news.
André Harrell was a longtime friend and music legend responsible for artists like:
Mary J Blige
Al B Sure
Soul For Real
Rest In Peace.
#AndreHarrell 59 years old, one of the cornerstones of HIP-HOP, from being an artist as #DrJekkylAndMrHyde to Def Jam to Uptown Records where he literally birthed GHETTO FABULOUS, HipHop Soul, MJB & unleashed Puff into the world, this is my era, I’m not ok with this! R.I.P. Icon— bevysmith (@bevysmith) May 9, 2020
It’s hard to describe how big an imprint Andre Harrell had on music. From his own rap career to his days at Def Jam to Uptown to Motown to Revolt... From Mary J. Blige to Diddy to Heavy D to Jodeci... Andre Harrell was a pioneer and a legend.— Marc Lamont Hill (@marclamonthill) May 9, 2020