Press Release


October 3, 2022

Second Estate Records, a new label founded by A&R veteran and entrepreneur Mel Carter, has entered into a worldwide joint venture with Warner Records. Under the terms of the deal, Warner Records will provide the full spectrum of marketing and distribution services for Second Estate’s artists and recordings. Carter will also serve as a consultant to the A&R team for Warner Records’ wide-ranging artist roster, working closely with Steve Carless (President of A&R) and Karen Kwak (EVP and Head of A&R).

With a focus on developing young talent, Second Estate’s first signing, breakout Philadelphia rapper 2rare, has already seen success thanks to his viral hit “Q-Pid” featuring Lil Durk.

In making the announcement, Aaron Bay-Schuck, CEO and Co-Chairman, Warner Records said: “Mel is one of the top A&R minds in the business. He’s already proven to be an invaluable resource for our team and 2rare is just the very beginning of what’s to come from Second Estate. Tom [Corson] and I are excited about this new partnership and to be aligned with such a forward-thinking, dynamic force like Mel.”

Carter added: “Throughout my career, I’ve been laser-focused on discovering and championing young talent. Now with Second Estate, I can continue to do that on an even bigger scale. Being able to tap into Warner Records’ incredible network and global reach is a game-changer, and will allow Second Estate’s artists to reach new heights. I’m grateful to Aaron, Tom, Steve, and Karen for their partnership, and I’m looking forward to all we can accomplish together.”

Carter most recently served as SVP of A&R for Republic Records where he scouted, signed, and fostered new talent alongside overseeing the roster for Hikari Ultra, his joint venture with the label. Before that, Carter spent a decade facilitating deals throughout the industry, including signing Jovanie to Atlantic Records.