Charles Koppelman, a renowned music executive, died on Friday, November 25, at the age of 82. His son Brian Koppelman and daughter Jenny Hutt announced his death on social media, although neither disclosed the cause of death. The siblings disclosed that their father, a music superstar, died surrounded by his family. According to some accounts, Koppelman had a protracted illness before dying away on Friday. Brian Koppelman, the late musician’s son and Billions showrunner stated in a sad Instagram post,
“He lived precisely the life he desired. And he spent his last days with the people he cared about the most. Thank you, Pop.”
Jenny Hutt, Koppelman’s daughter, also shared,
“We regret to inform you that our dear father, Pop-Pop, and closest friend Charles Koppelman died peacefully earlier today, accompanied by his whole family. His larger-than-life presence will stay with us for the rest of our lives.”
Charles Koppelman, a renowned music entrepreneur, and performer died at the age of 82.
Koppelman, who was born in 1940, was a major player in the recording industry for many years. The iconic CEO was born in Brooklyn, New York, and started his career in music as a singer and composer in 1960. He began his career as a member of the musical group The Ivy Three. He subsequently joined the songwriting team of Aldon Music under CEO Don Kirshner, with bandmate and eventual business partner Don Rubin. Carole King, Neil Sedaka, Barry Mann, and Cynthia Weil were among the new members of the ensemble.
When Columbia Pictures bought Aldon Music, Koppelman’s career shifted to that of a music publisher and business executive, and he was appointed to director of Screen Gems/Columbia Music. Koppelman and Don Rubin founded Koppelman/Rubin Associates in 1965, with financial assistance from the former’s uncle. The Lovin Spoonful and The Little Bits of Sound were signed by Koppelman/Rubin Associates, an entertainment business. Commonwealth United quickly purchased the firm, and Charles Koppelman and Don Rubin stayed on to handle the music division for many years.
However, in the 1970s, Charles Koppelman joined CBS Records, where he quickly rose to the position of VP/GM of international publishing. He subsequently moved on to specialize in the executive position by establishing or managing a number of record labels. Koppelman founded his own entertainment firm in the mid-1970s with fellow CBS executive, Martin Bandier, and New York real estate mogul Samuel LeFrak, Bandier’s father-in-law. The business was later managed Barbra Streisand, Dolly Parton, the Four Tops, and Cher.
Charles Koppelman later founded SBK Entertainment World, Inc., which was sold to EMI Music for $300 million. His work with SBK was famous, since it was once the world’s biggest independent music publisher, with over 250k titles (previously owned by CBS Songs). After he and Bandier sold their stake in SBK Records to EMI Music, Charles Koppelman became Chairman and CEO of EMI Records. Koppelman rose to prominence by holding managerial roles at EMI and Steve Madden. In addition, he was the Chairman of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. Koppelman was the CEO of CAK Entertainment at the time of his death.