b. August 1943, Hertfordshire, England. Ellis attended Newcastle-upon-Tyne University, where as social secretary he booked bands to appear at dances. It was during this period as a science student that he confronted Bob Dylan for a memorable scene captured in the film Don’t Look Back. After graduating he formed his own agency which became Chrysalis Artists in 1967. The name was a combination of the names of Ellis and his partner Chris Wright. The next year the duo set up Chrysalis Records, with Jethro Tull and Ten Years After among their early releases. The label’s successes with these and other British acts led Ellis to move to New York in 1975. There he set up a US branch of Chrysalis, signing such acts as Blondie and Pat Benatar. He also became the first non-US citizen to be elected president of the Recording Industry Association of America. After policy disagreements with Wright, he left Chrysalis in 1985 and worked outside the music business until becoming chairman of the British Phonographic Industry from 1989-91. Ellis subsequently set up Imago Records, with finance from BMG Records. With offices in London and New York, its first artists were King Of Fools, the Henry Rollins Band and Baby Animals.
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