HITS Daily Double


Holly Lane, a music professional who created and ran multiple distribution companies, managed artists and booked folkloric musicians, died Friday in New York City. She was 59.

Lane served as the COO for six record labels, ran distribution for one of the earliest dance music operations in the U.S., and headed operations for an artist management firm and a music video production house.

She started in design—concert tickets, posters, wall murals and merchandise for promoters and acts in the metro Washington, D.C. area. She moved to New York in the early 1980s as a label manager for Greenworld Distribution, working with Stryper, Great White and Poison among others.

Lane launched Roadrunner Records US, inking a distribution deal with Important Records Distribution and launching three imprints: Roadracer, Emergo and Hawker. From there, Lane and Combat RecordsSteve Sinclair created the metal label Mechanic Records with funding from MCA. Among the releases were a gold album from Trixter, Voivod and the first Dream Theater record.

Lane eventually returned to distribution to run the U.S. arm of the Italian dance music distributor Flying Records where she also launched a merchandise line of DJ equipment and clothing and made the operation a full-fledged American manufacturing label.

After a stint as GM of Next Plateau Entertainment (home of Salt N Pepa), Lane moved Joan Jett and Kenny Laguna's Blackheart Records, acquiring multiple boutique labels during her tenure and managing the reissue of Jett’s catalog, new recordings and the daily operations of the management company.

Lane also represented European indies at her own Fast Lane company and was GM at Tuff City, where she developed the Latin imprint Andale.

As a live music promoter, presented Afro-Cuban folkloric music in New York. She worked in video and new media for Aestheticom, eventually becoming a video producer working on, among other projects, Barbara Walters’ specials.