The Big Five record labels are:

  • Universal Music Group (includes A&M, Decca, Deutsche Grammophon, Island, MCA, Motown, PolyGram and others)
  • Sony Music Entertainment (includes Columbia, Epic and others)
  • EMI Group (includes Angel, Blue Note, Capitol, Odeon, Parlophone, Virgin and others)
  • Warner Brothers Music (includes Atlantic, Elektra, London, Reprise, Rhino and others)
  • BMG Entertainment (includes Arista, RCA and others)

These are global giants in the music and entertainment industry, who as of 2003 control 70-80% of the worldwide music output. They have bought, merged, absorbed, or operated many of the labels listed below.

See also: List of electronic music record labels, List of independent record labels

Current and historic record labels listed alphabetically:

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