Warner Music Group’s Global Catalog Division has announced the acquisition of the recorded music rights and income streams from YES’ Atlantic Records era catalog. More than 50 years after the British group’s debut, YES remains one of the most successful, respected, and influential rock bands of all time, with more than 30 million albums sold worldwide.
In making the announcement, Kevin Gore, Warner Music’s President of Global Catalog, stated, “My introduction to YES came while working at a record store in Ohio in 1983. I loved the 90125 album and went to see the band live, where I was introduced to their catalog of incredible songs. I’ve been a fan ever since and we’re absolutely thrilled and deeply honored that the strong relationship between YES and Warner Music will continue forever.“
When the progressive rock pioneers joined the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2017, Rush’s Geddy Lee noted in his induction speech, “The music of YES is still echoing down through the years, showing me that music truly is a continuum.”
Buzzing European-based duo Nullzwei are generating strong international interest from record label A&R’s, music publishers and booking agents since going No.1 on the Spotify Viral 50 - Global chart with their infectious dance single, “Jesus In Berlin” song.
Nullzwei have also recently secured worldwide management with Professor Jonathan Shalit OBE and Alistair Goldsmith from the burgeoning London, England-based talent representation firm Chosen Music who flew the duo out to the UK to sign their deal recently. Chosen Music is also home to artists including Nathan Evans, Neikid, S1MBA, Saint PHNX, Saltwives and Reiley – whom A&R Worldwide helped the firm secure a worldwide major label deal with Pete Ganbarg, President A&R, Atlantic Records and President ATCO Records during the pandemic.
A&R Worldwide has learned that Nullzwei have started generating offers and many inquiries from record labels, music publishers and booking agents from across the globe. They along with their management will determine who they sign within the coming weeks, with both UK and U.S. labels and publishers leading the way currently.
Riccardo Loda has been promoted to Head of A&R at Warner Chappell Music Italy (WCM Italy), part of the music publishing arm of Warner Music Group. He will continue to be based in Milan and report to Santiago Menéndez-Pidal, President, Southern Europe, Warner Chappell Music.
Loda has worked as an A&R Manager at Warner Chappell Music since 2018, where he joined the publisher from BMG Rights Management, where he’d been part of the A&R team since 2012.
Riccardo Loda stated, “I’m so pleased to have been asked to step up into this new role. It’s an exciting time in Italian music, with the local hip-hop scene in particular fizzing with energy. There’s also renewed global interest in Italian artists and songwriters, so I think you’ll see a lot more international collabs in the year ahead.”
Santiago Menéndez-Pidal added, “Riccardo is a brilliant A&R exec who has built great relationships with artists, managers and labels across Italy and beyond over the last decade. He combines a sharp sense of what’s happening on the music scene with the management know-how to deliver complex and creative projects.”
BMI has announced that Tracy McKnight will join BMI’s Creative team as Vice President, Creative, Film, TV & Visual Media. In this role, McKnight will lead the day-to-day functions of the Film, TV & Visual Media department. She will help identify and sign new affiliates to BMI, while continuing to cultivate and nurture relationships with the company’s industry-leading roster of film, TV and visual media composers. McKnight will also help develop programs and events that support career development and provide opportunities to highlight the creative works of BMI’s composers. She will be based out of the company’s Los Angeles office and will report directly to BMI Executive Vice President, Creative & Licensing, Mike Steinberg. McKnight begins her new role on January 23.
McKnight brings a wealth of music and film industry experience to BMI. She spent more than two decades as an esteemed creative executive and award-winning music supervisor with over 170 film and TV credits to date.
In addition to her work as a music supervisor, McKnight also held various music related roles within the entertainment industry. She was president of indie soundtrack label Node Records and worked with multiple composers including Jeff Beal, Marco Beltrami, Stanley Clarke, Rachel Portman, Jocelyn Pook and Rufus Wainwright, among others. She also spent four years as the head of film music at Lionsgate, overseeing numerous high-profile projects including The Hunger Games and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire soundtracks.
McKnight is a past Board member of Women in Film, was a member of the TV Academy Music Peer Group Executive Committee and served for two years as the Vice President of the Guild of Music Supervisors. She was also a long-time advisor to the Sundance Film Festival, where she co-programmed its annual concert “A Celebration of Music in Film.”
IGROOVE AG & VEVO JOIN MUSEXPO’S “DISRUPTIBUTION”
MUSEXPO 2023 www.musexpo.net the highly regarded annual global music business conference and showcase event will return to the “Media Capital of The World,” Burbank, California from March 19th – 22nd.
This year’s event will see an exclusive panel forum featuring both independent and major music distributors that will discuss the future evolution of “Disruptibution” – new and innovative ways to get music to the masses, as well as label services; rights management; traditional, digital and social media marketing; emerging markets; new distribution business models and more.
Joining the “Global Distribution: Innovative Ways To The Consumer Market” panel at this year’s MUSEXPO are Dennis Hausammann – CEO, iGroove AG; Gabriela Prisciandaro - Director of Talent, VEVO; Kasey Fries – Vice President Operations, Downtown Music Services; Mike Fink – Head of Creator Services, DistroKid; Sam Juneman – Sr. Vice President, Head of Marketing & Services, ADA and moderator Mark Sutherland, a renowned global music business journalist, who is currently a contributing writer for Music Business Worldwide, former editor for Music Week (UK), and Global Editor, Billboard.
MUSEXPO joins a week-long series of events that includes the Global Synch & Brands Summit, A&R Summit, the esteemed A&R Worldwide gala dinner event (with 300 guests from the US and around the world anticipated to attend), and more, as it brings together the international music community for key insights and discussions on the evolution of the worldwide music business.
MUSEXPO has also unveiled dozens of new speakers for its forthcoming “United Nations of Music” event from within the various touchpoints of the worldwide music business from A&R, music publishing, management, digital, streaming, radio, booking and live, marketing, technology, performance rights and much more.
To register to attend the event with the current A&R Worldwide discount, or for organization and group discounts contact Dusty Bisla at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on event sponsorship, showcase opportunities and event partnerships contact Sat Bisla at email@example.com.
Information on direct flights to the Burbank Airport and conference discount hotel room bookings within the Burbank, CA area is available at www.musexpo.net.
GLOBAL NEWS UPDATES…
POLYDOR MAKES NEW A&R APPOINTMENTS: As reported in the UK’s Music Week, Polydor Records has announced the appointment of Richard O’Donovan to Head of A&R. O’Donovan was formerly. A&R Director and has worked at Polydor for 11 years. Furthermore, the label has appointed Eve Fairley-Chickwe to the role of A&R Director and Jos Watkin to the position of Sr. A&R Director. Eve Fairley-Chickwe joins Polydor from AWAL and Jos Watkin joins from BMG music publishing. Polydor has seen much success within the last year with artists including Sam Fender, Celeste, Nathan Evans, Holly Humberstone, Inhaler, Glass Animals, Becky Hill, and Rain Radio.
A RAFT OF NEW DEALS: Independent music publisher Daytripper and CCS Rights Management (CCS) have announced a raft of new recent signings including a worldwide co-publishing deal with Marc Koecher, a Toronto-based music producer, mixer, and music/film/TV composer. Mark is the third member of the band Featurette, who is also a part of Daytripper. CCS has officially signed the Montreal-based band The Dears to administer their entire catalog, including future releases. The Dears is an indie rock band led by the husband-and-wife duo of singer-guitarist Murray Lightburn and keyboardist Natalia Yanchak. Additionally, CCS has entered into a partnership with Funzalo Records, a record label and music publisher out of Los Angeles, California. CCS will publish and administer the labels’ catalogs, including the masters.
MUSHROOM PUBLISHING SIGNS SAM TOMPKINS: Singer and songwriter Sam Tompkins has signed a deal with Mushroom Music Publishing for Australia and New Zealand. The UK singer-songwriter has garnered over 130 million global streams and 3.4 million Spotify monthly listeners. Tompkins is signed to Island Records via Universal Music Group. He has collaborated with artists such as JNR Choi and his song “Whole” was sampled by Nicki Minaj and Yung Bleu. In 2022, Justin Bieber invited Tompkins on stage to perform with him during his tour. Tompkins’ recent single “Lose It All” entered the UK Top 100 and has generated over 12 million global streams. His latest single “Die For Someone” will be included on his forthcoming debut album.
SPOTIFY TO CUT 6% OF GLOBAL STAFF: Spotify Technology SA has announced that it will cut its global staff by 6%. This coincides with Spotify’s current restructuring of leadership including the departure of the Dawn Ostroff, Chief Content & Advertising Business Officer. According to Daniel Ek, Chief Executive, Spotify, lay-offs will help bring down costs for the company at a time of economic uncertainty. Last year, the company’s operating expenses were double the revenue growth. The redundancies at Spotify are the latest of the wave of big tech companies to make employee cuts following Google, Meta, Amazon and others trimming their work forces.
PRIMARY WAVE MUSIC OPENS “THE DOORS” WITH NEW DEAL: Primary Wave Music has announced that they have finalized an agreement to acquire the rights of Robby Krieger and the late Ray Manzarek as they pertain to the critically acclaimed band, The Doors. The monumental acquisition includes their interests in The Doors’ music publishing catalog, recordings, trademarks, and merchandise rights and income, among other things. The Jim Morrison entities and the legendary band's drummer John Densmore retain their interests separately from Primary Wave. This deal brings into the Primary Wave Music family The Doors’ timeless and classic hits across six phenomenal studio albums. Primary Wave’s marketing, digital strategy, branding, licensing, and synch teams will work closely with The Doors’ manager Jeff Jampol (Jampol Artist Management, Inc.) to help drive opportunities across this rich catalog of music.
INTERSTELLAR LAUNCHES WITH HIRES FROM BMG & KOBALT: Interstellar Music Services, a new rights management company, has made two high-profile appointments. Joining the team from Kobalt Music Publishing is former Sr. Vice President David Wille. Wille joins Interstellar as Global Head of Sync & Brand Partnerships. Sarah Bargiela joins from her former position as Sr. Manager, Income Tracking at BMG. She will serve as Interstellar’s Head of Copyright and Royalties. Interstellar was launched by Andy Robinson and Sean Stockdale. The company describes itself as a music rights management company “established for artists, songwriters, and creators.”
AVEX USA LAUNCHES LABEL WITH TIKTOK STAR: Avex USA and TikTok star Ari Elkins have partnered to launch a new label called Blue Suede Records. Avex USA is the US division of the Japanese music and entertainment company, Avex. Avex expanded into North America in 2021. Ari Elkins has over TikTok 1.9 million followers on TikTok, creating content that exposes viewers to new music recommendations. Elkins has helped break artists and hits through his platform. Blue Suede Records will provide an opportunity for new emerging artists to develop their careers.
WARNER MUSIC GROUP NAMES EVP STRATEGY & OPERATIONS: YouTube executive Tim Matusch has joined Warner Music Group as Executive VP of Strategy & Operations. The news was announced in a company memo sent last week by Robert Kyncl CEO, Warner Music Group who worked alongside Matusch at YouTube before stepping down as Chief Business Officer at the company to join WMG. Matusch most recently served as Managing Director of Strategy & Business Operations at YouTube, a role he held for more than two years. Prior to that, he served in senior consulting roles at Boston Consulting Group and Oliver Wyman, where he spent more than 12 years and eventually rose to partner. He also worked in senior operating roles at AOL, including general manager at AOL.com and AOL Products.
HUME HIRES ADRIAN KARVINEN IN VP ROLE: Web3 entertainment company, Hume, has appointed former A&R executive Adrian Karvinen as Vice President of Music Business & Partnerships. Karvinen has more than 20 years of experience in the music industry in the areas of artist management, A&R, and creative consulting and began his A&R career at Island Records in Australia. Through an opportunity to come to Europe by A&R Worldwide almost 15 years ago, Karvinen eventually moved to Scandinavia to take on an A&R role. Throughout his career, he has held positions at labels within Sony and Universal Music Group and has worked with brands such as Gucci, Chanel, and ACNE. In his most recent role, Karvinen served as Director of North America and Head of Crypto-Integration and Catalog Acquisitions for Snafu Records. In his new role at Hume, Karvinen will be responsible for building partnerships between Hume’s ‘metastars’ and major brands and artists.
WISE MUSIC AUSTRALIA BUY LOUIS TILLETT CATALOG: Wise Music Australia has acquired Australian singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Louis Tillett’s extensive back catalog and future works in an exclusive global music publishing deal. Louis Tillet was nominated by the National Film and Sound Archive Australia as a “Priority Heritage Artist” and has provided a distinctive and influential presence on the Australian underground music scene throughout the late 1970’s, 1980’s and 1990’s, leading groups like Wet Taxis, Paris Green and the Aspersion Caste. His career has seen him be invited to collaborate with Leonard Cohen and Brian Eno, he has worked with Charlie Owen, Ed Kuepper, Tex Perkins, Don Walker and Brett Myers. Nick Cave called him “a pioneer that has been an inspiration to many of us”. Tillett’s expansive back catalog includes eleven albums.
WCM PHILIPPINES SIGNS GLOBAL DEAL WITH ABS-CBN MUSIC: Warner Chappell Music Philippines recently announced that it has signed a worldwide publishing agreement with ABS-CBN Music, under ABS-CBN Film Productions, Inc. (AFPI), which has one of the largest music catalogs in the Philippines. The deal grants Warner Chappell Music global publishing administration rights to the entire song catalog of ABS-CBN Music, which is expected to open up new markets and opportunities for local composers. ABS-CBN Music has been at the cutting edge of the Filipino music scene and is amongst the most influential music companies in the country that promote original Filipino compositions to the rest of the world. It has more than 300 songwriters on its roster as well as thousands of songs in its catalog.
DÉCIBELS PRODUCTIONS UNVEILS ACQUISTION: Décibels Productions has acquired a majority stake in Les Visiteurs Du Soir. Décibels Productions is a live entertainment and concert production company that was established nine years ago. It is a standalone division of Warner Music France that produces artist concerts, comedy shows, and musicals. Les Visiteurs Du Soir is led by Olivier Gluzman and produces and promotes French and international artists such as Jane Birkin, Rufus Wainwright, Imany, Pink Martini, and more. Additionally, the agency works with artists in development as a consultant to festival organizers and other live shows.
TUNECORE RENEWS EXPANDS DEAL WITH SENTRIC: TuneCore and Sentric Music Group have renewed their partnership. DIY music distribution company, TuneCore will be able to use UK-based publishing administrator Sentric’s technology and direct global collection network to be able to increase revenue opportunities for their publishing songwriters. Through the partnership, TuneCore will offer songwriters membership to available global performance and mechanical royalty societies. TuneCore was founded in 2012 and has since paid over $100 million to songwriters through its Publishing Administration service. Sentric Music Group was acquired by Utopia Music last year with Sentric Founder Chris Meehan joining as Vice President of Royalty Management Services for Utopia.
PREMIER MUSIC GROUP UNVEILS NEW FINANCING: Premier Music Group, a leading music strategy and supervision agency led by Josh Deutsch and Randall Poster, has announced the close of its second round of financing, led by leading media investment company MEP Capital. MEP will join Premier’s Board of Directors, alongside independent music publisher Primary Wave, which invested in Premier Music Group in 2019. The financing will power Premier’s ongoing acquisitions, including its recent acquisition of Listen (We Are Listen LLC), a sonic identity and sound design firm. It follows previous acquisitions of music supervision firms Wool & Tusk (2019) and Search Party (2020), founded by acclaimed supervisor Randall Poster (directors Wes Anderson, Todd Haynes, Martin Scorsese, Noah Baumbach, Richard Linklater). Premier has also entered a partnership with Q Factory by Robert Etoll, which is a leading catalog of music and sound design specifically crafted for film and television advertising to administer the catalog.
SOUNDCLOUD NAMES GLOBAL HEAD OF MUSIC: Emmy Lovell has been named Global Head of Music at SoundCloud. Based in London, England, Lovell will report to Chief Content and Marketing Officer, Lauren Wirtzer-Seawood. She’ll be responsible for leading SoundCloud’s global music strategy and oversee the company’s artist and label relations and commercial label partnerships team. Most recently, Lovell served as Interim CEO of Napster. She has also served as Executive VP of WEA, the global artist and label services arm of Warner Music Group. SoundCloud recently launched a rebranded creator suite, SoundCloud for Artists, announced a partnership with music collaboration and data management tool Session, and acquired music AI company Musiio in addition to its recent global licensing deal with Warner Music Group.
FUGA INKS DISTRO DEAL WITH MARATHON MUSIC: FUGA has entered a global distribution deal with Marathon Music Group. With the new deal, Marathon Music Group will be using FUGA’s global digital and physical distribution offerings. Marathon Music Group was founded by CEO Paul-Rene Albertini, Phillippe Ascoli, and Jimmy Mikaoui in 2012. The independent music label is home to artists including Courtney Barnett, Lava La Rue, Afro B, and more. The partnership with FUGA will give Marathon Music access to its marketing, trends and analytics, sync and brand partnerships services, and more.
SYMPHONIC NAMES NEW GENERAL COUNSEL: Music Distributor Symphonic Distribution, has appointed Patra Sinner as General Counsel. Sinner is a licensed lawyer in Tennessee, South Carolina, and North Carolina. She has been in private practice for almost 20 years with experience in domestic litigation and entertainment matters as well as artist management, booking, media, and radio. Sinner is the co-founder of Nashville-based artist management, distribution, and label services company Vista 22. In her new role at Symphonic, Sinner will advise the company’s senior management team on internal and external legal matters and in managing and negotiating partner contracts.
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Amy Dunning, Arnold Peter, Ben Gordon, Jake Wisely, Michael Pollack, Gabriela Prisciandaro, Ericka Coulter, Rak Sanghvi, Gavin Sheppard, Miguel Fernandez, Paul Harris, Jai Prateek, Eric Greenspan and Paul Pontius.
JACKASS OF THE WEEK
Have you ever sent a text message you regretted, clicked on the wrong link, posted an inappropriate message or image on social media, accidentally replied “send all” on an E-mail, or made a total ass of yourself? Yes, we’ve all had a jackass moment at one time or another in our lives. We all love those cute and cuddly animals no matter where they’re from, even when they let their natural instincts get the best of them! Click HERE to see animals in their not so natural habitats creating some jackass moments to make us all laugh.
Last year, 25-year-old KAMRAD released his breakthrough single “I Believe” The song connected with millions of people, went Top 10 on the airplay charts in nine European territories and secured Gold and Platinum status in five of them, including Germany and Poland. Not only did KAMRAD connect with fans at radio, but he also caught fire on TikTok, where his music was used in clips that have amassed more than 50 million views, and 85 million streams across all platforms. Building off of the success of “I Believe,” KAMRAD unleashes his hypnotizing new single “Feel Alive” (Sony Music Germany). Over the past two years, KAMRAD experienced various ups and downs and now feels alive and that reflects on the lyrics of the new song. KAMRAD’s message is that things will get better, even if they don’t always seem to. “Feel Alive” will be presented to his fans on stage during his I Believe European Tour 2023, which begins in Hamburg on April 10th and wraps up in Zurich, May 6th. Experience “Feel Alive” HERE and contact KAMRAD’s publishing partner Florian Schröedter at firstname.lastname@example.org, as he’s available for international sync and brand opportunities.
HERE, and contact Alistair Goldsmith at email@example.com and Dakota Hoven at firstname.lastname@example.org for additional insight and available opportunities with Caity Baser.
PASSPORT APPROVED™ PLAYLIST – 1/22/2023
“PASSPORT APPROVED” PLAYLIST FOR Sunday, January 22nd, 2023: The weekly import show. Heard on more than 50 radio stations on six continents weekly including: Flux FM Berlin, Germany; NINETYSIX Radio (Indonesia); JioSaavn (India); Radio Doble Nueve, Lima, Peru; WZRH–FM New Orleans, LA; KWSS “93.9FM” Phoenix, AZ; KRML “102.1FM” Carmel, CA; KFRR “New Rock 104.1FM” Fresno, CA; Radio 1, Mumbai, India; WCNR Charlottesville, VA; KIWR “The River” Council Bluffs, IA; 2XM Ireland (national radio); 96.2 ZFM The Netherlands; WAPS–FM “The Summit.FM” Akron–Canton, OH; WKTL–FM Youngstown, OH; 105.5FM XFM Nairobi, Kenya; PUK–FM Johannesburg, South Africa; Rock 96.5FM Zambia; 897 FM Bratislava, Slovakia; WITH “90.1FM” Ithaca, NY; UCFM 87.8FM Australian Capital Territory, Australia; WRUR 88.5FM Rochester, NY; WCRU–FM Hamilton, NY; KZND Anchorage, AK; KQCJ Quad Cities, IL; Allgauhit–FM Bavaria Germany; Indie Xfm Los Angeles and on The Independent FM (iHeartRadio) in the United States, as well as many others internationally.
Listen to this two hour show by clicking HERE: