Update: A spokesperson for Beats Music confirmed to us that “Trent Reznor is still with Beats Music.”

Jimmy Iovine has long credited Nine Inch Nails frontman and Beats Music Chief Creative Officer Trent Reznor as a driving force behind the success of the service. Reznor, however, is now rumored to have left the company as it finalizes its $3B sell to Apple. The news comes from a line in a USA Today report over the weekend that curiously doesn’t mention a source of the information:

(Curiously, Beats’ chief creative officer, Trent Reznor, the singer-songwriter and producer of Nine Inch Nails fame responsible for Beats’ tastemaking, has reportedly left the company. Also, one of Beats’ principal technology executives, Fredric Vinna, has recently gone to Spotify, and its co-founder, Ola Sars, to a Spotify-backed venture.)

Beats Music didn’t respond to a request for comment on this story, but Billboard reports that a spokesperson for Beats and for Reznor claim the report is inaccurate:

A spokesperson for Reznor and for Beats say the report is inaccurate. Though they’ve not specified which elements of the report are false, and which are indeed accurate. The tale also notes one of Beats’ principal technology executives, Fredric Vinna, has recently exited to Spotify, and its co-founder Ola Sars has apparently joined an unidentified Spotify-backed venture.

It’s probably worth pointing out that Trent has had some not so pleasant words for Apple in the past and its policies related to selling NIN music on the App Store. When Apple rejected his app back in 2009, Trent had this to say about the company:

“You can buy ‘The Downward Fucking Spiral’ on iTunes,” he said, “but you can’t allow an iPhone app that may have a song with a bad word somewhere in it … Hey Apple, I just got some spam about fucking hot Asian teens through your e-mail program. I just saw two guys having explicit anal sex right there in Safari! On my iPhone! Come on Apple, think your policies through and for fuck’s sake get your app approval scenario together.”

While Reznor only had stakes in Beats Music and not the whole Beats Electronics company, it’s still uncertain where he’ll end up by the time the Apple deal closes.

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13 Responses to “Is Beats CCO Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails going to be an Apple employee?”

  1. Oflife says:

    Be interesting to see how these technically illiterate types who Apple are buying or hiring are going to effect the moral of real engineers. On a related note, this superb 20 minute video from The New York Times on the 1986 Challenger Shuttle Disaster is a lesson in what happens when engineers are let out of the equation:


    • Robert Nixon says:

      Calling Trent Reznor technically illiterate is probably the most ignorant thing I’ll read all day,and that’s saying a lot.


    • Josh Mobley says:

      You fool. It’s been a disaster because they didn’t have people like jimmy iovine and trent resnor working on the music side. iTunes radio is what happens when ENGINEERS and managers decide what people want. Trent Resnor has a degree in computer science and has pushed the boundaries of music and technology for decades now.


  2. Robert Nixon says:

    Man, I would love to see Dre and Reznor team up with the Logic/Garage Band team.


  3. iPadCary says:

    Umm, anybody got a link for that explicit anal sex thing?
    My, ahh, friend wants it.
    Yeah, my friend.


  4. Josh Mobley says:

    He will leave regardless. He’s a creative guy. He helped create the streaming service and will move on now that it’s done.


  5. Reznor is also famous for being an asshole. Personalities aside however, anyone like Reznor with an absolute vendetta against Apple, is far too rigid to work at a place like Apple. The fact that he reached for that particular imagery as an example of porn, shows something else about him that probably wouldn’t fit in at Apple.


  6. My main concern with the acquisition was exactly about this. Some of these guys are talented, but they’re also assholes with a tendency to shoot their mouths off.

    This is business. Was Trent Reznor representing the business interests of Beats when he made those comments about Apple? Probably not. It’s always prudent to not burn your bridges BEFORE you realize you may end up crossing them. I’m sure Jimmy Iovine hasn’t agreed with every business decision Apple has ever made, but he’s been smart enough to keep a lower profile about incendiary opinions.

    After all, the app store rules and regulations are just that. Business decisions. It’s not personal. They make decisions in the best interests of their business first, and in the interests of the widest range of customers second. If a few app developers have their hopes and dreams crushed along the way, because their ideas aren’t a good fit with the App Store, Apple doesn’t cry itself to sleep.


  7. cghancock01 says:

    I would buy NIN editions of the iPhone, iPod classic, iPod Touch, iPod shuffle, iPad, MacBook, Mac Mini, and NIN-edition cases for all of them. Right now. Take my money.