Irving Green Dies

Mercury Records co-founder Irving Green, 90, who helped break the color barrier by promoting artists such as Sarah Vaughn, Dinah Washington and The Platters, died of natural causes July 1st at a hospital in Palm Springs, Calif.

Green, with Berle Adams and Arthur Talmadge, created the independent label in 1945, turning it into a major with hits by Louis Armstrong, Frankie Laine and Patti Page.

Green named Quincy Jones VP in 1964, making Jones the first African-American appointed to a high level at a major. Following Mercury’s sale to PolyGram Records in the mid-1970s, Green became a real estate developer – first in Iran, then Palm Springs.