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We are heartbroken to have lost our friend and long-serving colleague Jo Brooks who sadly succumbed to a long illness over the weekend.

Joining the Beggars Group from music distributor 3MV in 1999, Jo quickly became a key part of the team. With an incredible eye for detail and a fun outlook, she started out by setting up the mail order department – a role she excelled in doing, often going above and beyond to make sure everyone got what they wanted. She also spent a lot of time in her early days working on AV:Deck, the company’s then online radio station, interviewing bands in the nascent days of podcasting.

A deep fan of music with unrivalled enthusiasm, she later took her knowledge and passion across to an operational role where she first headed up digital production for the Group before managing our day-to-day workings with YouTube; a huge undertaking that involved managing myriad channels and rights in an ever-evolving landscape. She made it look easy.

Beggars Group CEO Paul Redding, who worked with Jo throughout her time at the company, said, “Jo’s passing is a huge loss to Beggars. She guided us through our first moves into D2C, was part of our first digital team and continued to be an integral part of our digital operation department through her diagnosis. Underpinning everything though was an encyclopaedic knowledge of our catalogues and her love of music.  We will miss you Jo” 

Global Head of Digital Operations Tim Roddis pays tribute, “As the longest standing member of the Digital Operations team at Beggars, Jo was central to what we do, with us through every change, every up and down. Her limitless knowledge of our catalogue proved invaluable countless times on the many projects we worked on together. Always keen for an early morning chat and a cup of coffee to catch up on what was going on. I know I speak for the whole team, past and present, when I say we will miss Jo immeasurably both as a colleague and more importantly, as a friend.”

A huge fan of 4AD, the label’s Head of A&R Ed Horrox, who also worked with Jo throughout her time at Beggars, remembers her fondly, “In the days before social media, Jo was a perfect bridge between 4AD artists and a group of seriously committed fans. They knew they could turn to Jo for any information and she would sometimes correct them if necessary when things got heated in the chat rooms. She loved to know as much as possible about developments in an artist’s career. I can remember distinctly the look of excitement and the sound of her voice as we would talk, for example, about a new Breeders record. She is a legend in the world of 4AD and will be sadly missed.”

Leaving us too soon, nothing was ever too much for Jo. She was always warm and welcoming, wanting the best for everyone and never shy of taking on new tasks. We are going to miss her terribly. We were so lucky to know her and even luckier to be able to call her one of our own.

Our love and deepest condolences to Jo’s family and her friends, of whom there are many – a reflection on just how special Jo was.

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