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Biography

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Overview (3)

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, USA
Died in Thousand Oaks, California, USA  (heart attack)
Birth NameGerald E Heller

Mini Bio (1)

Jerry Heller is best known for managing west coast rap supergroup and gangster rap pioneers NWA and Eazy E and was a co-founder and CEO of Ruthless Records.

Jerry Heller can be counted as one of the select few in the music industry who has had a significant role in shaping trends and musical movements for five decades. Truly a unique force with his unparalleled ability to predict the movements of the music industry, Jerry Heller rose to prominence in the 1960s and 70s as one of the preeminent super agents; a title arguably shared only by Freddie Fields and David Geffen. During this historically important time in the music industry, He was responsible for bringing Elton John and Pink Floyd to America for their first United States tours. Among the many other notable accomplishments of Jerry Heller during this time included his representations of such foundational artists as Journey, Styx, REO Speedwagon, Boz Scaggs, Grassroots, Guess Who, Marvin Gaye, Joan Armatrading, Van Morrison, War, Average White Band, and Crosby Nash. Following the momentum of the 1960s and 70s, he continued to generate many of the groundbreaking record deals in New Wave and Punk-which defined and reinvented the music industry for the next decade.

Starting in the mid-1980s, Jerry Heller was the moving force and marketing genius behind the emergence and crossover of Rap music to the record buying public. His musical vision continued to demonstrate its capacity to be nothing short of astounding. He not only founded Ruthless Records with the late Eazy E, but he discovered and managed NWA, Egyptian Lover, World Class Wreckin Cru, LA Dream Team, J.J. Fad, The DOC, Michel'le, Above the Law, and other trend-setting artists who formed the foundation for the incredible successes of Priority Records and Interscope Records. To date, Ruthless Records has sold in excess of 110 million records, not counting singles. The artists (including the heir apparent to the NWA legacy Bone Thugs 'N Harmony, discovered as homeless Cleveland youths by Eazy and Jerry) and producers such as Dr. Dre whose careers Jerry Heller established sold millions upon millions of records for Interscope Records, Priority Records, ATCO/Atlantic Records, MCA Records, Relativity/Sony Records. At the time of Eazy-E's death and Jerry Heller's departure from Ruthless Records, the company was earning $10,000,000 per month.

Jerry Heller is arguably dollar-for-dollar the most successful record company executive of the entire Rap Era. He started Ruthless Records with two hundred and fifty thousand dollars of his own money along with another $2.25 million dollar contribution by Sony/Relativity when the P&D deal was struck. To date, the Original members of NWA have grossed somewhere in the neighborhood of $1.75 billion dollars.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Anonymous

Spouse (1)

Gayle Steiner (? - ?) (divorced)

Trivia (8)

Is a teacher at UCLA for Entertainment Studies and Performing Arts. . . .
He is the first non-lawyer ever admitted to lecture at the Practicing Law Institute. . .
Served in the United States Army 1963, received an Honorable Discharge. . .
Was manager to Ike and Tina Turner.
Started Ruthless Records with Eazy E.
Was invited to the White House twice by two different presidents, . . . Nixon and George Bush Sr.
Was Marvin Gaye's personal manager from 1967 to 1972. . .
Was responsible for bringing Elton John and Pink Floyd to the United States.

Personal Quotes (2)

There are two kinds of people in the entertainment industry. Those that close deals and those that don't. Close the deal and you will always be known as a deal closer. . . ."
[on the music business and musicians] As for the things that bothered me, I've been in the business for six decades. I've probably represented almost every major artist in the world, either directly or peripherally, at one time or another," Heller said. "I have a certain reputation, and that reputation certainly doesn't entail the things that they said about me. It was very hurtful. I thought 'No Vaseline' was hurtful. But actually, this was more hurtful. Look, I am what I am, but I'm not a thief. And I'm not scandalous. I did more for N.W.A ... I mean, it was just incredible, the success that we had. So for them to call me a thief is just terrible.

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