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London: Human resources

Employment: employers and senior executives
Employment: senior executives - ranked: tier 4

Russells Solicitors

Russells Solicitors’s team continues to act for high-profile senior executives across the media, entertainment and sports sectors, with an emphasis on the music industry. Group head John Reid and Simon Esplen led advice to the former vice presidents of Live Nation on their appointment as joint CEOs of AEG Presents. Gavin Maude assisted Mike Smith, former president of music at Universal Music, with his high-profile move to Warner/Chappell Music as managing director. Chris Organ and Chris Gossage are key names.

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London: Private client

Family - ranked: tier 5

Russells Solicitors

Russells Solicitors is ‘a strong media firm with a bright and discreet family practice’. Team head Carol Ellinas is ‘a smart and savvy lawyer who understands the needs of her camera-shy celebrity clientele. She is straight-talking and tough’.

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London: Risk advisory

Reputation management
Reputation management - ranked: tier 4

Russells Solicitors

Russells Solicitors’ team ‘goes above and beyond for clients’ and leverages its media strength to advise claimants in the sport, TV and film, and music sectors. Clients include Ellie Goulding, Bobby Gillespie, Shaun Ryder, Linford Christie and Jeremy Kyle. In a recent highlight, the team advised Cheryl (formerly Cheryl Cole) on preventing the publication of compromising photographs by News Group Newspapers. Other work included assisting Parlophone with the press issues surrounding a royalties dispute with Radiohead, and acting for Patsy Kensit in phone-hacking litigation against Mirror Group Newspapers. Practice head Steven Tregear is ‘incredible to work with’; John Reid and senior associate Callum Galbraith are also noted.

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London: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Media and entertainment (including media finance)
Media and entertainment (including media finance) - ranked: tier 1

Russells Solicitors

A ‘leading light for music industry expertise’, Russells Solicitors acts for a range of high-profile clients in the music industry including record companies, publishers and producers, and agencies and artists on the full range of matters including live events, sponsorship, recording and publishing agreements, TV appearances, show agreements, private client, real estate, employment, disputes and corporate matters. Chris Organ represented Roger Waters of Pink Floyd on the negotiations surrounding his global music publishing deal with BMG. Steven Tregear advised Parlophone on its dispute with Radiohead concerning digital royalties. Brian Howard advised Duran Duran on a dispute with Gloucester Place Music over the US rights to its first three albums. Gavin Maude heads the artist department and advised Coldplay on negotiations surrounding its deal with the US NFL to perform the half-time show at the NFL Super Bowl. Jo Brittain is a specialist in working with new and up-and-coming artists and advised Clean Bandit on negotiations surrounding the clearance of the performer rights on the single Rockabye. Mark Sinnott is ‘one of the most experienced and knowledgeable music law advisers in the industry’ and advised Universal Music on the negotiation of the original soundtrack album rights licence from Universal Pictures in relation to the film Bridget Jones’s Baby. Team head Simon Esplen is an ‘excellent commercial music lawyer who fights very hard for his clients’; John Reid is also noted for contentious mandates. Chris Gossage is a ‘hugely experienced corporate lawyer who has the rare advantage of fully understanding the music industry’. Senior associate Ryan Vince is also recommended.

Leading individuals: Media and entertainment

Chris Gossage - Russells Solicitors (Music)

Chris Organ - Russells Solicitors (Music)

Gavin Maude - Russells Solicitors (Music)

Simon Esplen - Russells Solicitors (Music)

Next generation lawyers

Ryan Vince - Russells Solicitors (Music)

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Sport - ranked: tier 6

Russells Solicitors

Well known for its representation of sporting individuals, Russells Solicitors’s team handles commercial, tax, family, employment and private client matters, and is particularly strong in disputes. Litigator and practice head Steven Tregear represented boxing promoter Frank Warren in a dispute with a venue operator regarding whether or not Warren had a valid venue hire contract for a particular date; he also advised Warren on reputation management issues. Litigator John Reid acted for Nathan Douglas in claims brought against UK Athletics and an Italian training camp following a foot injury sustained at the camp. Other clients include Linford Christie and the ECB. Litigator Ellen Gallagher joined from Goodman Derrick LLP in September 2016.

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Further information on Russells Solicitors

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