He began the CTI label in 1967 as an imprint of Herb Alpert's A&M Records. Three years later Taylor took CTI out from under the A&M umbrella and relaunched CTI as an independent label. Most titles from 1970 through 1977 were distributed by Motown.
In 1978, the label filed for bankruptcy; however, much of its catalog has remained in print (Creed Taylor launched the 8000 reissue series in 1979.) Taylor and Vic Chirumbolo, CTI's Vice-President and Sales Manager, pulled through and formed a new distribution deal with Columbia Records, but this deal was shortlived, and ended in 1980 with Columbia retaining the rights to CTI's master tape library (i.e., the titles released between 1970 and 1979.) Then the label went independent once again, and continued active until 1984, releasing new albums by such artists as Jim Hall, Roland Hanna and the all-star studio band Fuse One.
Creed Taylor restructured CTI in 1989, resuming his partnership with engineer Rudy Van Gelder and photographer Pete Turner when recording the all-star session Rhythmstick in June 1989 (an ambitious project released on vinyl, CD, VHS and LaserDisc in 1990), with distribution initally being handled by PolyGram, then Bluemoon, and finially Koch Records. This version of the label lasted until 1998.
In 2002, CTI started to issue mail-order only releases via CTIRecords.com, but the website no longer exists. The site also sold Creed Taylor productions from the Bethlehem, ABC, Impulse, Verve and CTI catalogs.
In Japan, King Records remains CTI's distributor since 1970. More recently, Creed Taylor himself produced an extensive SHM-CD reissue series in 2009, supervising all the remasterings done by Rudy van Gelder at Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey. In September 2010, a new CTI project, "The CTI Jazz All-Star Band: Montreux Jazz Festival 2009" (produced by Taylor and engineered by Van Gelder) was released in Japan on CD, DVD and Blu-ray formats.
Extensive CD reissue series have been coordinated in Europe and in the U.S. by producer Didier C. Deutsch, former CTI publicist, as well as in Japan by producers Yoichi Nakao, Arnaldo DeSouteiro and Susumu Morikawa.
Labelcode: LC 1969