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Los Angeles, California.
United States
Phone number:
Founding date :
September 1976
Parent label:
Epic Records
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No bands are currently signed on Portrait.
Band Genre Country #
Band Album Type Year Catalog Format Description


The Portrait label was introduced in 1976 by CBS Records. The first artists to bear the Portrait imprint were Joan Baez, Burton Cummings and The McCrarys. The first single issued by the label was Burton Cummings' hit "Stand Tall", followed by the 1977 Joan Baez album Blowin' Away as well as the early 1977 self-titled album by The McCrarys. Other notable artists with releases on the Portrait label were Cyndi Lauper, Sade and Heart.

In 1982, the label was relaunched to tap into the New Wave scene and other music that wasn't gaining airplay by signing artists such as Altered Images, Aldo Nova, Accept, Arc Angel, Hawaiian Pups, The Elvis Brothers, Eddy Grant, Orion the Hunter, the Producers, Saga and Peter Baumann (formerly of Tangerine Dream). Portrait struck gold with the signings of both Cyndi Lauper and Sade in 1983, however Americans wouldn't hear Sade until the following year. Aldo Nova did make some headway with his 1983 Subject: Aldo Nova album and its hit single "Monkey on Your Back" as well as well as the 1982 hit "Fantasy" off his debut album released the same year. Saga also found success with the songs "On the Loose" and "Wind Him Up", propelling the band to amass gold and platinum albums worldwide. By the end of 1986, however, only a few artists were left on Portrait, with Cindy Lauper being one of them.

For a short time between September 1980 and 1982, Portrait releases were co-branded with the Epic label.

In 1988, the label re-emerged once again with new releases covering soundtracks, jazz, latin, reggae and international pop. The same year the Portrait Masters Series of jazz reissues was launched as well. Cindy Lauper moved to Epic, although some of her albums as well as those from other former Portrait artists were still being reissued.

Around 1997 the label was revived in Germany (using the logo introduced in 1988). In 1988 in the US it appeared on some compilations (with a new logo) and was relaunched in 1999 as a hard-rock/metal label (also using the original logo). Notable signees where Ratt, Cinderella, Great White, the Union Underground and Mars Electric. In 2000, Iron Maiden signed with Portrait in conjunction with Columbia Records in the US.

In 2008 the label was revived in the UK by the local affiliate of Sony BMG Music Entertainment. Most of the Portrait releases were remastered and re-released on Epic Records.


Labelcode: LC 4734

Added by: (Unknown user) Modified by: Gutterscream
Added on: N/A Last modified on: 2021-05-04 18:43:40
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