Home Business Walter Yetnikoff, abrasive CBS Records executive with a roster of stars, dies...

Walter Yetnikoff, abrasive CBS Records executive with a roster of stars, dies at 87

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Mr. Yetnikoff possessed no ear for music and was, by his own admission, crude, vulgar and consumed by his uncontrollable appetite for sex, drugs and alcohol. Yet, during his 15 years at the helm of CBS Records, from 1975 to 1990, he quadrupled the company’s sales, which were built largely on such megaselling albums as Meat Loaf’s “Bat Out of Hell” (1977), Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” (1979), Joel’s “52nd Street” (1980), Jackson’s “Thriller” (1982) and Springsteen’s “Born in the U.S.A.” (1984).

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