By Nolan Strong
New York based independent record label TVT Records terminated the majority of their employees today, sources revealed to AllHipHop.com today (February 18).
TVT, which is home to major recording stars like Lil Jon & The Eastside Boyz, Pitbull, Ying Yang Twins, The Polyphonic Spree and others, is expected to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection this week.
TVT Records was founded by its current President, Steve Gottlieb, who launched the label out of his New York City apartment in 1985.
The label’s first success was the popular eight-volume Television’s Greatest Hits collection, which chronicled various TV theme songs.
At its height, TVT Records was one of the top independent record labels in the United States, earning Billboard’s Independent Record label of the year award 5 consecutive times in a row, the most recent in 2006.
In addition to Hip-Hop music, the label released music by Nine Inch Nails and other influential Modern Rock, Electronica, Industrial and Nu-Metal bands.
It is not known how the bankruptcy filing will affect the label’s release schedule, which includes Lil’ Jon’s highly anticipated album Crunk Rock.
Just weeks ago, Pitbull, one of the label’s top stars, lashed out at the label and urged fans to stop buying his new album, The Boatlift.
Pitbull accused TVT Records of not properly promoting the album and placed most of the blame on Gottlieb.
"I'm out here working like a slave, doing things that other artists don't even know how to do," Pitbull said. "A label's there to further and promote your career, but it feels like they just keep holding me back."
TVT Records was also embroiled in a legal battle over early recordings by Cash Money Click, which featured Ja Rule.
While an initial ruling awarded TVT Records $132 million dollars in damages, the figure was soon voided to zero on appeal.
The status of TVT Records' other businesses, including TVT Music Publishing, is not known as of press time.