Pollstar Live! 2018 Confirmed Speakers
Apple Music and the Music Business: Q&A with Eddy Cue
Eddy Cue is Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, reporting to CEO Tim Cook. Eddy oversees Apple’s industry-leading content stores including the iTunes Store and Apple Music, as well as Apple Pay, Maps, Search Ads, Apple’s innovative iCloud services, and Apple’s productivity and creativity apps. Eddy also leads the newly created team responsible for developing all aspects of Apple’s worldwide video programming. Eddy’s team has an excellent track record of building and strengthening online services to meet and exceed the high expectations of Apple’s customers. He joined Apple in 1989 and leads a large organization of amazing people. Eddy was instrumental in creating the Apple online store in 1998, the iTunes Store in 2003 and the App Store in 2008. He also played a key role in developing Apple’s award-winning iLife suite of applications. In his early years at Apple, he was a successful manager of software engineering and customer support teams. Eddy was recognized by renowned cancer research center City of Hope with their 2014 Spirit of Life Award, honoring an individual whose work has fundamentally impacted the music, film and entertainment industry. Eddy earned a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Economics from Duke University.
Shirley Halperin is Executive Editor of Music at Variety, where she spearheads music coverage for the print magazine and Variety.com. Through her 20-year career, she has held staff positions at Entertainment Weekly, Teen People and Us Weekly and was also a regular contributor to Rolling Stone. Shirley joined the Hollywood Reporter (THR) as Music Editor in 2010, later adding sister magazine Billboard to her resume. Until 2017, she oversaw music news coverage for both publications, and in 2011, won a Best Personality Profile award from the Los Angeles Press Club for her THR cover story on Trent Reznor.
Arms Race: Can The Indie Festivals Compete With Global Bookers
Red Light Management
Eric Mayers is a manager at Red Light Management, where he co-manages The Decemberists, Punch Brothers, Nickel Creek, Chris Thile and Noam Pikelny. Mayers oversees and directs all touring and production logistics for My Morning Jacket, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Flight of the Conchords, Hop Along, Cymbals Eat Guitars and Sam Cohen.
With over 25 years experience in the industry, Mayers was previously the tour and production manager for My Morning Jacket, The Decemberists, Nickel Creek and others. Mayers co-produces The Decemberists’ Traveler’s Rest Festival in Missoula, Montana, and was the Production Manager for multiple music festivals such as Wakarusa, The High Sierra Music Festival, DelFest, Northwest String Summit, along with numerous one-off events throughout the country. He has worked for independent promoters throughout the Pacific Northwest, including Double Tee Concerts, and LMG Concerts where he was the Vice President of Touring and Production.
In 2005 — before he was known to many as “Riot Mike” — Michael A. Petryshyn was a relatively unknown promoter kid from Buffalo, New York. Trying to make waves in the Windy City against strong odds, he held the first Riot Fest at the Congress Theater in 2005. In the 13 years since, Riot Fest’s daily attendance has grown from 900 to over 45,000 per day.
In addition to entertaining fans of cutting edge punk, rock and hip-hop music, Riot has also made worldwide headlines by reuniting such white whales as The Replacements, the Misfits and Jawbreaker. Riot Fests have been thrown all over North America, but Chicago will always be home for the festival, which has managed to remain fully independent to this day — a special rarity in the current music industry climate.
Riot Fest also promotes concerts in Chicago clubs throughout the year and maintains an online music and lifestyle magazine. Additionally, Riot’s social media presence and unique marketing strategies have received national acclaim in the press.
Mike’s longtime partner Sean McKeough passed away late last year, shaking the Riot Fest family to its core. Moving forward, Mike has vowed to honor and preserve Sean’s legacy in the company that he tirelessly helped to build.
Newport Folk Festival / Newport Jazz Festival
After acting as producer of The Newport Folk Festival for the last nine years, Jay Sweet was recently named Executive Producer of The Newport Festivals Foundation, a 501(c)(3) which fosters the legacy and expands the impact of its Festivals through educational initiatives that celebrate innovation while preserving the deep traditions inherent in Jazz and Folk music. During his tenure, the Newport Folk Festival has won three Pollstar awards for “Music Festival Of The Year” and has regained its stature as one of the country’s premiere music events. A frequent keynote speaker at music conferences around the country including SXSW, Pollstar, Billboard, CMJ, Harvard, Berklee College of Music, as well as several of NPR’s syndicated programs such as “The Connection”, “On Point” and “All Songs Considered”, Jay also served as the Editor-at-Large for the acclaimed music and film magazine PASTE, nominated for the 2008 and 2009 National Magazine Award for General Excellence, where he wrote numerous features and cover stories on The Roots, The Flaming Lips, Radiohead, My Morning Jacket and film director Wes Anderson. In his spare time, Jay has also managed to write and sell two major motion picture scripts and start a social benefits company called Humans for Oceans, which raises awareness to help save our oceans through an actions reward program.
Red Mountain Entertainment
Jill Wheeler comes from a family of music business junkies.
Graduated from Belmont University with a music business degree.
Spent early career at The William Morris Agency in Nashville, typing contracts, answering phones, eventually got promoted to agent.
In 1992, a promoting job opened up at New Era Promotions in Birmingham, Alabama. To this day, 25 years year later, Jill still works for the same company, only now its called Red Mountain Entertainment.
Jill runs point on the Beale Street Music Festival, and the Wildflower Festival in Richardson TX, while also booking RME’s 3 amphitheaters, 2 clubs and theatres in the southeast.
The Future of Live Music & Streaming
Since the age of 12, Mark Cuban has been a natural businessman. Selling garbage bags door to door, the seed was planted early on for what would eventually become long-term success. After graduating from Indiana University – where he briefly owned the most popular bar in town – Mark moved to Dallas. After a dispute with an employer who wanted him to clean instead of closing an important sale, Mark created MicroSolutions, a computer consulting service. He went on to later sell MicroSolutions in 1990 to CompuServe. In 1995, Mark and long-time friend Todd Wagner came up with an internet based solution to not being able to listen to Hoosiers Basketball games out in Texas. That solution was Broadcast.com – streaming audio over the internet. In just four short years, Broadcast.com (then Audionet) would be sold to Yahoo for $5.6 billion dollars. Since his acquisition of the Dallas Mavericks in 2000, he has overseen the Mavs competing in the NBA Finals for the first time in franchise history in 2006 – and becoming NBA World Champions in 2011. They are currently listed as one of Forbes’ most valuable franchises in sports. In addition to the Mavs, Mark is chairman and CEO of AXS tv, one of ABC’s “Sharks” on the hit show Shark Tank, and an investor in an ever-growing portfolio of businesses. He lives in Dallas with wife Tiffany, daughters Alexis and Alyssa, and son Jake.
Marc Geiger is WME’s Head of Music, leading the music industry’s top booking agency with the largest global footprint. Recognized by Billboard as one of the top 15 most influential executives in the music business, Geiger oversees a group of over 200 agents around the world. In 2016, WME’s Music division booked over 35,000 appearances worldwide, more than any other agency. This year, WME’s clients led the Grammy Awards with more than 20 wins; and a WME client also won the award for Best Original Song at the Academy Awards for the fifth consecutive year. Cited as a visionary for his ability to forecast trends in the music industry, Geiger consistently anticipates disruption and takes advantage of market shifts. He began his career as a concert promoter and worked as an agent at Triad Artists. He co-created the Lollapalooza tour in 1991, which eventually became the Lollapalooza festival in Chicago. Subsequently, he was hired by Rick Rubin and appointed Executive Vice President of A&R, Marketing and New Media at American Recordings. In 1994 Geiger recognized the Internet’s enormous potential to provide a link between artists and consumers. It was then that Geiger purchased a site called UBL.com and became one of the very first to plug the music industry into the digital space with the launch of ARTISTdirect. The site went on to become a media juggernaut, housing a talent agency, two record labels, a marketing solutions division and one of the most popular music destinations on the early Internet. He served as the company’s Chairman and CEO before joining the William Morris Agency in 2003. Geiger has led WME’s expansion into several growth areas. WME was the first major music agency to form an EDM division, playing an integral role in setting the genre’s live touring model through festivals and residencies. In addition, Geiger founded the first agency festival department, which has grown exponentially. Under his guidance, WME has made several key partnerships with leading music festivals throughout the world, including Lollapalooza which Geiger co-founded in 1991 and has since expanded to Argentina, Berlin, Brazil, Chile and Paris. In April 2015, WME acquired Australia’s top music booking agency Artist Voice, giving WME the largest global footprint of any music agency and providing access to Asia Pac’s accelerating live music business. Most recently, Geiger has led the charge on creating tours around WME’s digital talent, as well as ELeague, WME’s footprint in eSports. He has also helped several WME music clients successfully crossover into other businesses, including fashion, film, sports and television. A graduate of the University of California, San Diego, Geiger currently resides in Los Angeles.
Scott Greenstein, President and Chief Content Officer, leads SiriusXM’s programming and advertising sales for the largest radio company measured by revenue and one of the largest subscription media companies in the world. Since Greenstein joined SiriusXM in 2004, the company’s programming lineup has expanded to include more than 175 channels of commercial-free music, sports, news, comedy, talk and entertainment, broadcasting on the company’s satellite platform and SiriusXM streaming online.
Prior to SiriusXM, Greenstein served as Chairman of USA Films, and before that Co-President of October Films.
Roger Lynch is the president and CEO of Pandora. Prior to joining the team at Pandora, he served as the founding CEO of Sling TV, where he led the creation and launch of the over-the-top streaming television service that delivers live sports, news and entertainment to broadband-connected devices. He joined DISH in 2009 where he led the launch of DishWorld (now Sling International). Prior to joining DISH, he served as Chairman and CEO of Video Networks International, Ltd., an IPTV technology company in the United Kingdom. While at Video Networks he won an Emmy for Scamp, an on-demand children’s channel, and a BAFTA (British Academy of Film and The Arts) for V:MX, a collection of on-demand music video channels. He also previously served as president and CEO of Chello Broadband N.V., a broadband Internet service provider with operations in ten European countries. Prior to Chello, Roger was a technology investment banker with Morgan Stanley in New York, Silicon Valley and London. He began his career as a Member of the Technical Staff-Physics at the Hughes Aircraft Company, where he did R&D on infrared imaging and missile guidance systems. He received his Master of Business Administration with Highest Distinction from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College and his Bachelor of Science in Physics from the University of Southern California.
Gayle Troberman is the Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at iHeartMedia, Inc. In this role, Troberman works with all of iHeartMedia, Inc.’s businesses to closely connect them with consumers, helping integrate the company’s brands, products, and platforms even more deeply into consumers’ daily lives.
Prior, Troberman, a highly respected marketing industry veteran, served as Chief Marketing and Ideas Officer at IPG Mediabrands. Gayle spent 16 years at Microsoft as Chief Creative Officer where she was responsible for the company’s portfolio of brands and global advertising campaign across consumer and B-to-B products including Windows, Office, Bing, and XBOX.
She was also an early internet innovator, creating the industry’s first branded entertainment division at MSN, where she developed many of first online video series and pioneered the premise that with the Internet, brands, agencies and media companies could collaborate in entirely new ways, breaking down the barriers between marketers, creators, engineers, and consumers.
Troberman joined Microsoft from Manning Selvage and Lee, where she served as Vice President, Consumer Marketing and focused on applying consumer public relations principles to a broad range of technology brands and products before they developed paid media and advertising strategies.
Michael Rapino has served as Live Nation Entertainment’s President and Chief Executive Officer since 2005. Rapino led the transformation of Live Nation into the number one live music brand in the world with operations in more than 40 countries and annual revenue exceeding $8 billion. Comprised of three market leading divisions – Ticketmaster, Live Nation Concerts, Live Nation Media & Sponsorship – Live Nation annually issues over 480 million tickets, promotes 26,000 events, partners with over 900 sponsors and manages the careers of 500+ artists. Its ecommerce sites average 80 million unique monthly users.
Dan “Steiny” Steinberg, co-founder of Emporium Presents, started producing club shows at the Mercury Café in Denver at the age of sixteen. In 1993, Dan joined 2B Announced Presents as a talent buyer, and after college he relocated to Seattle at the tail end of 2002 promoting under the name Dan Steinberg Presents, later re-branded as Square Peg Concerts in October 2004. In June of 2015 Square Peg merger with Jason Zink’s Sherpa Concerts taking on the name of Emporium Presents producing live events all over the United States and Canada.
Dan was nominated as Independent Promoter of the Year in 2003, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 by Pollstar and was a member of the Concert Industry Consortium Panels in 2002 and 2004 and also moderated some legendary panels at Pollstar Live, SxSW, IAVM, Billboard Tour, CMW, Aspen Live, and ILMC known for treating the panelist to ‘Patron and Donuts’, yeah, you never know what the Jew will do, and yes its true his actual twitter handle is @TheJew.
Emporium Presents promotes all forms of live Entertainment, these past highlights includes shows Luke Bryan, Jason Mraz, Straight No Chaser, Kris Kristofferson w/ Merle Haggard, Daniel Tosh, The Scorpions, Keith Urban, Indigo Girls, Trailer Park Boys, Tedeschi Trucks Band Yo Gabba Gabba, John Prine, The Avett Brothers, Dream Theater, Eric Church, Dolly Parton, The Black Keys, Godsmack, BB King, Home Free and Cheech and Chong.
Steiny also hosts the live touring industries biggest podcast Promoter101.
#VegasStrong: What’s Next for the Entertainment Capitol of the World?
Jason Gastwirth is Senior Vice President of Marketing and Entertainment at Caesars Entertainment, where he is responsible for the live entertainment programming across the company’s 40+ venues nationwide – with Caesars recognized as the #3 live entertainment promoter in the world based on ticket revenues — as well as the company’s brand alliances/sponsorship and tv and film production divisions. Gastwirth spearheaded the successful launch of the world-class theater The Axis at Planet Hollywood that hosts residencies featuring Jennifer Lopez, Lionel Richie, Pitbull and Backstreet Boys.
Prior to joining Caesars, Gastwirth served as the Chief Marketing Officer of the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas and also worked at Las Vegas Sands Corp. as Vice President of Casino Marketing and Corporate Entertainment. Before joining the hospitality and entertainment industry, Gastwirth held strategy positions in San Francisco and New York at Gap Inc. and management consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton. Gastwirth earned his bachelor’s degree in government with honors at Harvard University and his MBA at Stanford University.
Gastwirth was recognized as “40 Under 40” by Vegas Inc. magazine in 2012. He has a wife and three daughters, and serves on the America Cancer Society’s Southern Nevada Leadership Board and the Tyler Robinson Foundation Gala Organizing Committee.
Lisa Marchese recently joined the Witkoff group, a privately held, global real estate development and investment firm, as Chief Operating Officer. Prior to this position, Lisa served as the Chief Marketing Officer for LVS Sands, a position she assumed in February 2016. In this capacity, she guided the brand’s vision as well as the marketing and sales strategy for the Venetian and the Palazzo. Before joining LVS, Lisa relocated to Las Vegas, NV to open The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. In her role as Chief Marketing Officer she launched an award-winning brand and also realized a new approach to entertainment for the Las Vegas market.
Kurt Melien is the President of Live Nation Las Vegas, overseeing the Las Vegas business for Live Nation’s North American Concerts Division, including the arena business and its portfolio of artist residencies.
Dayglo Productions/Brooklyn Bowl
Bruce Solar, executive vice president of Worldwide Music, began his career in the music industry at the Harry Chickles Agency in Boston, booking numerous acts including John Lee Hooker and Willie Dixon. In the mid-90’s, he moved to Absolute Artists, where he oversaw operations for the very successful boutique agency representing numerous legendary artists. In 2001, Solar joined The Agency Group where he spent the next 14 years representing a diverse group of clients including Brian Wilson, Cake, The Monkees, Psychedelic Furs, and many other international artists. His roster continues to expand with artist including Smokey Robinson, Alex Leahy and Blondie. Currently Solar is expanding APA’s successful Concerts division on a global scale as well as heading up the west coast music departments.
BREAKING THROUGH: Why Don’t We Talk…And Sing!
SERIOUS ABOUT COMEDY: A Look at the Exploding Live Comedy Business
Matt Blake is Head of Comedy Touring at leading entertainment and sports agency Creative Artists Agency (CAA). Blake works in the Los Angeles office and represents many of the world’s leading comedians, including Trevor Noah, Gabriel Iglesias, T.J. Miller, Ron White, Mike Epps, James Corden, Jo Koy, and Whitney Cummings, among others. Blake joined CAA in 2008 from The Gersh Agency, where he served as Vice President of the Comedy Department. Blake graduated from UCLA with a degree in mathematics and economics.
The Gersh Agency
Rick Greenstein has been at The Gersh Agency since 1995, where he oversees a department of 20 people and a Comedy/PA roster of more than 170 clients. He is the responsible agent for Artists such as Dave Chappelle, John Oliver, Jamie Foxx, Drew Carey, Brian Regan, Kevin Nealon, Louie Anderson and Janeane Garofalo, among others. Before his time at Gersh, Rick ran his own music agency from 1983 until 1988, when he joined APA where he represented both music and comedic Artists. In 1991, he joined the William Morris Agency, where he ran the Personal Appearance Comedy Department for four years before starting the Comedy Department at Gersh. His current title is Senior Partner and Senior Executive Vice President of the agency.
Steve Levine is a partner and the Head of Worldwide Music at ICM Partners, a talent and literary agency representing clients in the fields of motion pictures, television, publishing, music, theater, branded entertainment and digital media. ICM Partners is one of the predominant agencies in the United States and Europe, with its principal offices in Los Angeles, New York and London. Mr. Levine oversees all comedy, music and other personal appearances out of the agency’s Los Angeles office. The agency’s concerts department represents artists in all musical genres, including pop, rock, R&B, hip-hop, indie and adult contemporary, as well as the world’s most recognizable comedians. Mr. Levine’s client list includes Jay Leno, Chris Rock, Jon Stewart, Ellen DeGeneres, Kathy Griffin, Howie Mandel, David Spade, Jim Belushi, Brad Garrett, Kristin Chenoweth, Paula Abdul and Vanessa Williams. The concerts department arranges global engagements and tours in a wide variety of settings and venues for the most popular performers and recording artists working today, whether in top arenas such as London’s O2 or at music festivals including Bonnaroo, Coachella, Lollapalooza, SXSW, Lilith Fair, Sasquatch, and Summerfest. The concerts department works in tandem with the agency’s Global Branded Entertainment division to secure tour sponsors for many of our domestic and international tours. Mr. Levine joined ICM in 1987 as a Booking Agent and was promoted to Head of the West Coast Music department in 1999. He currently serves on the National Board of Directors of the Association of Performing Arts Presenters (APAP) and on the Board of Directors for The American Comedy Fund Comedy Awards. Prior to ICM, Mr. Levine ran his own agency, Independent Artes and Concerts, which specialized in representing Latin American artists and booking concerts in Latin America. Mr. Levine got his start in the entertainment industry at Spotlight Entertainment, a small independent booking agency. Before that he was, by his own admission, a mediocre musician and a pretty good waiter. A Philadelphia native, Mr. Levine attended Widener College, Temple University and West Chester State College. He lives in Studio City with his wife, Linda. Their daughter, Sophie, is currently attending Chapman University.
Stacy Mark is a partner in WME’s personal appearance department. She represents leading comedians such as W. Kamau Bell, Hannibal Buress, Margaret Cho, Kevin James, Hari Kondabolu, Russell Peters, Joe Rogan, Martin Short, and Daniel Tosh. Mark began her career at William Morris Agency 24 years ago and transitioned to WME after the agency’s merger with Endeavor in 2009. A graduate of Emerson College, Mark currently resides in Los Angeles.
United Talent Agency
Nick Nuciforo Is a Partner and head of Comedy Touring for United Talent Agency.
Levity Entertainment Group
Two clients on the 2017 Forbes Highest Paid Comedians List. An international comedian with a new series, and multi-special Netflix deal. Launching one of the most talked about young comedians into her own network talent deal. Before comedy began its current renaissance, Judi Marmel was building multi-million-dollar careers for her clients through a combination of savvy marketing, calculated touring and good old fashioned funny. The founding Levity Entertainment Partner has taken Jeff Dunham and Sebastian Maniscalco to the Forbes Top 15 Earners in Comedy List – grossing upwards of 15 million a year each without the traditional big TV money – through creative alliances, expanding their base and more recently, a series of comedy specials. The thirty-year veteran – known for her exceptional eye for both talent and the market who will respond – has created a niche orchestrating career paths for clients which includes ownership of their content, book deals, residencies and expanding their audience in tangible ways. When comedy was considered “dead,” Marmel figured out how to help her clients connect and build a tangible base; now she is aligning with Gad Elmaleh to establish France’s premiere comedian as a truly global comic via both Netflix comedy specials and a series based on his adventures in establishing himself in the United States/on this continent. She successfully leveraged Maniscalco’s record-breaking ticket sales for an unprecedented fourth comedy special at Showtime that includes the development of a scripted series based on his stand-up. Most recently, Marmel is stewarding 23-year-old Taylor Tomlinson to the top levels of modern comedy. After a breakout appearance at the prestigious Montreal Comedy Festival, Marmel navigated an unprecedented) bidding war for the fresh comedy voice that resulted in a wildly anticipated ABC scripted deal, which the young star will write, star, and Executive Produce alongside Marmel. It is her ability to see the less than obvious opportunities, respond to comedy that falls outside whatever is the current buzz and put in the work to build an audience that has made Marmel not only one of the most consistent managers in this arena, but also one of the most sought after. Not only do her clients work, they realize dreams. The late Ralphie May, on the brink of releasing his first book when he passed two weeks ago, had just won the Casino Comedian of the year from the Gaming Association recognizing the quality of his work over his ongoing Vegas residency at Harrah’s. As a founding partner at LEG, Marmel runs the talent management division. Her eye for curating talent mines the national stages of the comedy clubs that LEG owns and operates to discover the next generation of comedy stars. She works in sync with the LEG and Triage Production arms on both scripted and non-scripted programming. She is a Producer on the syndicated talk show “The Real” (with her client, Loni Love), Food Network’s “Incredible Edibles” (starring client Jeff Dunham) and executive produced comedy specials for Netflix with Dunham and Elmaleh this year. Additional clients: Loni Love, Bert Kreischer, Darci Lynn Farmer, Gina Brillon, Erik Rivera, Michael Loftus, Pete Correale, Leonard Outz and Jessemae Peluso.
Live Nation Comedy
Geof Wills is the President of Live Nation Comedy and he and his team are lucky enough to work with many of the top comedians in the world.
The New Hard Ticket: How Mobile Will Impact Live Entertainment
Brad Griffith is the founder and CEO of Gametime. Innovation in the ticket industry had stalled before 2013. Not since StubHub built an online ticket marketplace more than a decade prior had a new platform been introduced to the consumer public. That changed when Brad Griffith sparked a revolution in live entertainment when he launched Gametime early that year.
While writing the first version of the app, Brad reimagined the fan experience from the ground up for mobile – adding mobile optimized tickets (no printing!), high-res in game photos, two tap checkout and curated inventory showing only the best values in every section. The app quickly garnered buzz in its home town of San Francisco with Business Insider calling Gametime “the app SF can’t stop talking about” and FOX Business called it “the most intuitive and friendly ticketing experience.”
By 2014 the company had expanded to dozens of markets and sports, quickly garnering attention from coveted millennials and investment community. Vivek Ranadive (Sacramento Kings owner), Jeff Mallett (San Francisco Giants ownership) David Blitzer (76ers co-owner) and Casey Wasserman (Wasserman Media Group CEO) invested alongside Silicon Valley’s elite Accel Partners as Gametime raised over 13 million in its Series A round in May 2015.
After earning an Engineering degree from Stanford, Brad followed his dreams to work in sports by working as a “Moneyball” style analyst for the Colorado Rockies and Chicago White Sox building statistical infrastructure to analyze player value.
He attended the Stanford Graduate School of Business in 2010 before helping to launch Zappedy, which delivered customer analytics for local businesses and sold to Groupon in 2011.
Brad has also competed for the nationally ranked Stanford men’s volleyball team and won 15 pro beach volleyball tournaments against national competition.
Today, Brad leads a team of 70 at the Gametime headquarters in San Francisco where he focuses on the continued optimization of the product and its evolution into other genres such as music and theater as well as a consumer selling platform. Gametime will continue to lower the barriers to attending games and thus create tighter knit communities.
Greg Patterson is Director, Venue Strategy at Eventbrite, where he leverages his seasoned history in live music to connect promoters, venues, and festival clients to killer technology that helps them pack their rooms, manage their shows, and connect artists with fans. Prior to Eventbrite, Greg created the music software company, Queue, in addition to co-founding two music companies: Artery Foundation, and Wonderful Union (formerly groundctrl) an artist services company which represents the digital needs of over two hundred acts, including Taylor Swift, Backstreet Boys, Drake, and Miley Cyrus.
Jared Smith was named president, Ticketmaster North America in December 2012. In this role, Jared is responsible for Ticketmaster’s world-leading ticketing software platforms and consumer businesses. Previously, Jared served as chief operating officer at Ticketmaster.
er since 2003. Under his leadership, Ticketmaster has continued to revolutionize the company’s approach to technology and fan engagement, particularly around using mobile tools to extend and enhance the live event experience. Always an instrumental part of innovative initiatives, Jared also led the transformation of the company’s client-facing sales and support organization and its focus on data-driven products, services and technology-driven marketing tools.
Prior to joining Ticketmaster, Jared held various roles in sports tourism and venue management. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Iowa.
Ant Taylor is the founder and CEO of Lyte. Lyte powers mobile ticketing solutions for event owners and fans, providing both a mobile-first alternative to resale websites. Since 2014, Lyte has partnered with over 300 top sports and entertainment brands, including BottleRock Music Festival, Newport Folk Festival, Arkansas Razorbacks Athletics, Mumford & Sons, Stagecoach Music Festival and more. Major ticketing platforms such as Eventbrite, Ticketfly, and Gingerbread Shed, owned by Goldenvoice, have integrated Lyte into their offering. Ant founded Lyte after observing the impact of the secondary ticket market on fans at the London Olympics. Hundreds of thousands of fans have since benefited from the Lyte solution. Before Lyte, Ant was an executive at ad technology pioneer Right Media, acquired by Yahoo in 2007 and ad cofounder of Moat, acquired by Oracle in 2017; two of the top five venture-backed exits in NYC history.
Rodney Williams, CEO and Co-Founder of LISNR, the new standard for device-to-device connectivity using sound. LISNR is a secure local proxy for data transmission using sound with over +40 industry awards and currently powers over 30 million devices across numerous industries. As the CEO of LISNR, Rodney has been recognized as the Entrepreneur of the Year in Connected World Communications by EY, the NAACP Inspiring Innovation 2017, the 2016 Black Enterprise Tech Entrepreneur of the Year and Breakout Star of the Year and named to Ad Age’s Top 40 under 40. Williams has grown LISNR from a single idea to a promising global standard, with over +40 industry awards, most notably named to the 2015 and 2016 CNBC Disruptor 50 Lists, Cannes Gold Lion in Mobile Software Innovation and a 2017 CES Honoree in Mobile Software. An alum of the R/GA Accelerator powered by Techstars, Williams is an innovative and out-of-the-box strategic thinker, always looking for new ways to connect consumers more effectively with technology. His newest venture has been as a co-founder of SoLo funds, a peer-to-peer lending exchange for the underbanked population that provides affordable access to low-value funds.
Prior to LISNR, Rodney spent over four years at Procter & Gamble as a brand manager and is most noted as the first marketer there to co-write digital patents. Prior to P&G, Williams spent 2 years in New Business Development for Lockheed Martin and over 4 years leading a collegiate digital agency focusing on consumer acquisitions and CRM management. Rodney achieved these honors after earning four degrees in Finance and Economics, including an MBA from Howard University, by the age of 24.
Outside of Rodney’s pursuit professionally, he’s a celebrated speaker, mentor, and advisor to many. He currently sits on the board of VC funded startups Wyzerr and SoLo Funds and remains the youngest member of the Howard University School of Business Board of Advisors. Rodney is also currently serving on the University of Cincinnati Board of Trustees and has been inducted into West Virginia University’s B&E Roll of Distinguished Alumni and Procter & Gamble’s Roll of Distinguished Alumni. When Rodney is not leading or assisting, he’s teaching and was most recently chosen to be a Forbes contributing author – covering innovation, entrepreneurship, leadership and disruptive technologies.
Sue Young leads the Facebook Events team, where she’s focused on helping people discover events, do more of what they’re passionate about, and spend time together in person. Launched in 2005, Facebook Events enables over 700 million people a month create, discover, and share events posted on Facebook. Since its launch, Facebook Events has brought people together all over the world— from performances and concerts, to birthday parties and family celebrations, and even sparking global movements.
Sue started at Facebook in 2012. Prior to leading the Events team, Sue led the first launch of Facebook Marketplace and worked on Facebook Places. She started her career at IBM and worked on the Obama primary and national election. She also serves on the Board of Trustees of Planned Parenthood Northern California, which provides critical health care to people who need it most. She has an MBA from UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Business and a BS and MS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Sue lives in San Francisco with her husband and daughter.
World, Meet Oyster: Solving the Global Touring Puzzle
Barracuda Music GmbH / Vienna
Richard Hoermann is managing partner of Barracuda Music GmbH, Austria’s leading promoter for pop, rock and festival events. He started into the music business as a sound engineer back in 1982 and carried on as a promoter from 1986 onwards. Over the years he worked with all major artists from Aerosmith to the Rolling Stones, from the Eagles to Elton John. In 2008 he joined Barracuda Music, founded by Ewald Tatar and Harry Jenner, the two biggest festival-promoters in Austria. Barracuda is now promoting more than 350 shows annually, selling well over 1 Million tickets in 6 countries all over central and eastern Europe.
Sophie Lobl works at C3 Presents on the booking teams for Bonnaroo and aggregates Global Festival Offers with Live Nation. She worked at WME in both London and Los Angeles before moving to Austin.
Sophie was born in London and went to Leeds university.
Sebastian Mair started his music industry career in Canada before relocating to Tokyo in 1996. Since that time and co-founding Music Solutions, he has been a fixture in the Asian music industry, working a who’s who of the music industry including AEG Live, Rock Star Touring Artists, Fujipacific Music, Roadrunner Records, Live Nation (Japan), Las Vegas Sands Group, etc.. He was also previously a Cultural Officer at the Embassy of Canada in Japan, plus he’s often a music supervisor for film and television projects as well as music programming for top level brands (Starbucks, Hilton Hotels, Starwood Hotels, etc.). Sebastian is a Director/Consultant at Creativeman Productions which is the largest music festival promoter in Japan.
Bluesfest Group of Companies
Peter Noble has been working at a professional level in the music industry for over forty years. His significant contribution to the industry was recognised in 2014 when he was awarded the Rolling Stone Award for his services to Australian Music and in January 2016, when Peter Noble was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for service to live and recorded music, to tourism, and to the community.
Growing up in Sydney, Noble was drawn to the music industry at an early age playing in Rock, Soul and Blues bands during the sixties and seventies. His bass playing and business sense helped secure roles in a number of outfits including a stint in Clapham Junction, and as band leader for Marcia Hines, before moving to the US to work as a professional musician.Following extensive national and international touring, Peter settled in the USA and set up Portland Oregon’s first International Jazz Festival and was house booker at legendary venue ‘The Earth’.
Peter returned home to Australia at the beginning of the 80’s, and became a pioneer for Blues touring in Australia. Soul, Jazz, Blues and Reggae artists were finding a home, a promoter and a wide audience in Australia for the first time through Noble’s touring efforts.
He began booking international acts with the East Coast Blues Festival in 1990, and became a director in 1993. Peter coined the term Blues & Roots Music Festival in 1996 to encompass the growing reach and flavor of the festival – a term which would soon find common usage throughout the Australian music industry, typified when within 12 months the ARIA Awards created a Blues & Roots category as one of their major awards.Peter became a pioneer for Blues, Jazz, Roots and Indie Music touring in Australia, as well as running AIM Records; which became the first ever Australian independent label to win a Grammy Award.
Noble has worked in many areas of the music business including record producing, touring artists through his company Bluesfest Touring, artist management, setting up the Aboriginal Artists Agency in the early 70’s , event site development and festival presentations all over Australia and SE Asia.
Peter also collaborated with leading cultural creative Rhoda Roberts in 2013 to produce the first Boomerang Festival – a new world indigenous festival for all Australians held at the home of Bluesfest, the Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm. Noble has wanted to produce an Indigenous festival for many years and 2013 saw his dream realised. In 2016, the Boomerang Festival returns and will host its own space at Bluesfest and feature dance, language, story, talks & ideas, carving, weaving, and traditional healing programs.
As the Director of Byron Bay’s multi award winning music festival Bluesfest, which is celebrating its 29th Anniversary in 2018 Peter Noble has curated an impressive line up of Contemporary, Legendary and Blues & Roots artists to play at the festival over the years including: Kendrick Lamar, Bob Dylan, Robert Plant, Santana, The National, D’Angelo, Brian Wilson, Paul Simon, Jackson Browne, Joe Bonamassa, Bonnie Raitt, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Mavis Staples and Jason Isbell to name a few.
Bluesfest is one of Australia’s favourite as well as most successful music festivals, and has been hailed “The Greatest Music Festival on Earth” by Australia’s Channel 7 Sunday Night program watched by over 1 million people. Some of Bluesfest’s recent award highlights include the 2017 festival winning Gold in the Major Festival & Events category at the NSW Tourism Awards for the third time in a row entering them into the NSW Tourism Hall of Fame, the 2016 Best Regional Event at the Australian Event Awards, the 2015 Pan Australasian Festival of the Year at the Canadian Music Week International Festival Awards, six nominations in a row for the prestigious Pollstar Award for Best International Music Festival, including a nomination for the 2017 festival, multiple wins at the North Coast, NSW and National Tourism Awards, not to mention four Helpmann Awards for Australia’s Best Contemporary Music Festival and multiple A Greener Festival Awards, acknowledging the Festivals ongoing sustainability and environmental commitment. Bluesfest took home the Australian Event of the Year award at the Australian Event Awards in 2010 and Best Cultural, Arts or Music Event at the Australian Event Awards in 2014. In 2017 Bluesfest also received a Keeping the Blues Alive award from the Blues Foundation in Memphis Tennessee.
In 2010 Bluesfest moved to its permanent home, the community event site at the spectacular 120 hectare Tyagarah Tea Tree farm 11km north of Byron Bay. In February 2016, Byron Shire Council approved for additional events to be held at the site. The approval will allow for small events to be held on the site, primarily for community use, such as farmers markets and wedding receptions in the functions building to be built as a result of the approval and it will also allow the site to hold the Boomerang Indigenous Festival, once it becomes a stand-alone event. Furthermore Peter Noble and his team can now work on attracting one day concerts to the site.
Peter Noble spends his time working and living between the Byron Bay area and Bali and says “Life truly is an amazing adventure which I take on with wild enthusiasm on a daily basis”.
Live Nation Europe Concerts
John Reid is responsible for running the European touring and festival business for Live Nation. Reid joined Live Nation Entertainment as President of Live Nation Europe-Concerts in January of 2012. Prior to joining Live Nation Entertainment, he served as President of Warner Music Europe and Vice Chairman of Warner Music International. He joined Warner Music Group in 2000, where he ran international marketing and the development of several US stars including Michael Buble, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Madonna, Green Day and Linkin Park, as well as the global prominence of European artists such as Muse, James Blunt and Enya.
Earlier in his career, he served as President of Island Def Jam in the US, CEO of Polygram Canada, and was an artist manager. Reid holds a business degree from Trinity College Dublin.
Steve Strange started his career as an agent with Prestige in 1991 and was there for a year before returning to Ireland to promote shows with MCD/Wonderland for a 12 month period. He then returned to London to join FAB Agency followed by a year at Solo. He joined Helter Skelter in 1997.
In February 2005, he formed a new independently owned agency with Ian Huffam, Scott Thomas, Jeff Craft and Martin Horne, X-ray.
Steve’s clients include:
• Snow Patrol
• Queens of the Stone Age
• Jimmy Eat World
• Chance the Rapper
• Conor Oberst
United Talent Agency
In July 2017, David Zedeck joined UTA as the Global Head of UTA Music, Partner and Special Advisor to the Board of Directors. A prominent music industry executive, with a track record of developing artists, and a passion for music, Zedeck oversees the company’s rapidly expanding worldwide music business. Previously, Zedeck served as Live Nation Entertainment’s Executive Vice President and President of Global Talent and Artist Development since 2012. At Live Nation, he was responsible for overseeing the company’s global touring initiatives, focusing on acquiring talent on behalf of their global business units and working with the company’s officers on global development. Prior to Live Nation, Zedeck worked at CAA where he represented artists including Justin Timberlake, Demi Lovato, Justin Bieber, One Direction, Selena Gomez, Jonas Brothers, Il Divo, among others. Earlier, Zedeck represented a multitude of artists which included Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys, Hilary Duff, Chaka Khan, “P. Diddy” Combs, and NSync.
The Economics of Doing Good
Towalame Austin is a talented executive with over 17 years of experience in the non-profit sector. Ms. Austin has carved a niche in the charitable sector bridging the worlds of traditional philanthropy and entertainment philanthropy. In her current role as Executive of Philanthropy for Roc Nation, she is responsible for the development, implantation, and management of the philanthropic efforts of artists on Roc Nation’s roster. Ms. Austin set up and launched Rihanna’s charity venture, The Clara Lionel Foundation (CLF). During her three-year tenure with CLF, she was responsible for overseeing fundraising, organization management, program development, research, and brand synergy analysis. Ms. Austin has since assisted with transitioning a new Executive Director for the organization. Additionally, she supports the philanthropic efforts of several Roc Nation artists working in close collaboration with the executive directors of their organizations.
Ms. Austin began her career in the non-profit sector with the Magic Johnson Foundation Inc., where she served as Director of Corporate Relations and Special Events nationwide, Executive Vice President, and President of the Foundation, respectively. In her first position, she successfully managed the Foundation’s partnerships with donors and corporations and expanded fundraising capacity nationwide. She also produced the organization’s highly visible fundraising events, including “A Midsummer Night’s Magic,” “A Salute to African American Designers,” and the “Zo and Magic 8 Ball Challenge” during the NBA All Star Weekend across the country.
As president, Ms. Austin played a pivotal role in the strategic leadership of one of the nation’s leading charitable organizations. While in this position she managed the daily operations, continued growth and sustainability for the organization by expanding the research base, solidified new partnerships while maintaining long standing supporters, secured millions of dollars in corporate sponsorship, cultivated individual and major donor groups, and coordinated innovative fundraising initiatives. She also played a critical role in establishing and maintaining partnerships with Abbott Laboratories, AIDS Healthcare Foundation, Best Buy, American Airlines, Microsoft, California Community Foundation, American Express and Verizon to name a few.
The strength of Ms. Austin’s leadership is evident in the programs and campaigns implemented under her direction that are still presently in operation: six (6) AHF Magic Johnson Healthcare Clinics, ensuring access to complete medical care; the highly successful World Aids Day campaign, “I Stand with Magic”, testing over 80,000 at-risk individuals for HIV/AIDS and educating over 622,000 nationwide; Taylor Michaels Scholarship Program supporting over 850 minority high school students with college scholarships; and the Magic Johnson Community Empowerment Centers with 18 facilities nationwide in underserved communities.
In addition to her work with the Magic Johnson Foundation, Ms. Austin also worked closely with Magic Johnson Enterprises as a key contributor to business development and expansion for the Magic Johnson brand. She also utilized her business expertise in consulting Cookie Johnson’s brand, which resulted in the launch of a new premium denim line, CJ by Cookie Johnson, now available in stores nationwide.
Following her tenure with the Magic Johnson companies, Ms. Austin went on to serve as President for the Mourning Family Foundation, founded by retired NBA player Alonzo Mourning and his wife Tracy. The Mourning Family Foundation has a rich history of providing a platform of programs that inspire through advocacy, education, and enrichment to disadvantaged youth in Miami. Towalame was directly responsible for the rebranding, re-launch and program revitalization during her year with the organization. Initiatives spearheaded by Ms. Austin – program outreach, website launch, donor base cultivation and marketing strategy are major components of the organizations present infrastructure.
During her time in Miami, Ms. Austin also worked as a consultant for Dwyane Wade’s charitable enterprise, Wade’s World Foundation. In this role, she advised and facilitated the organizational structuring for day-to-day operations, implemented policies and procedures, developed job descriptions and responsibilities, as well as assisted with executive talent recruitment.
For her outstanding achievements in her career and community, Ms. Austin has received numerous awards of recognition including keys to cities in California and South Carolina, a Certificate of Commendation from the County of Los Angeles for community service, the Public Education Foundation’s Lifetime Educational Achievement Award, and a proclamation from the City of Eastover, South Carolina for the launch of its Community Power Center. Ms. Austin has been honored and recognized by a number of organizations such as the Black Business Association and the Palos Verdes Links organization.
She currently sits on the board for the Association of Black Foundation Executives (ABFE) and serves as Chair of the Governance Committee. She also serves on the Philanthropic/Advisory Board for her Alma Mater, California State University, Dominguez Hills. She has previously served on the Board of Directors for Legacy Ladies Inc., and Black Alliance for Educational Options (BAEO)
Ms. Austin holds a bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with a minor in Marketing and a concentration in Women’s Studies from California State University Dominguez Hills.
Jeff Castelaz is co-founder of The Pablove Foundation and currently serves on the Board of Directors.
Jeff co-founded and served as CEO of Dangerbird Records and Publishing from 2003 to 2012. He then served as President of Warner Music Group’s Elektra Records, where he worked with Ed Sheeran, Fitz and the Tantrums, Saint Motel and Kaleo.
Jeff founded Cast Management in his hometown of Milwaukee. He has operated the company continuously since 1992. He manages Blues Traveler, Dropkick Murphys, KT Tunstall, Dead Sara, Violent Femmes, The Devil Makes Three and record producers Tony Hoffer, Matt Rollings and Justin Meldal-Johnsen.
EverFi Sports & Entertainment
Brian Cooley leads EVERFI’s Sports & Entertainment Group, one of the most rapidly growing focus areas. In partnership with numerous professional sports leagues, teams, coaches, athletes and entertainers, EVERFI now trains over 2 million K-12 students each year. Previously, Brian served as EVERFI’s Chief Marketing Officer for four years and in doing so cultivated the group from a startup unit to a fully integrated creative, demand generation and client services organization.
As a long-time marketer, Brian has developed a passion for building powerful global brands and fostering loyal communities. He has led B2C and B2B marketing teams in the sports marketing and automotive industries, and in the technology and education sectors with IBM and Blackboard. Prior to joining EVERFI, he spent six years expanding Blackboard’s global education impact while overseeing branding, communications, demand generation and marketing operations practices.
Kevin Lyman has shaped youth culture for over 35 years with his award winning expertise in the music and entertainment industry as well as business and philanthropic ventures. Lyman is best known as the creator of the Vans Warped Tour, going into its 24th and final year, which can be considered one of the most socially influential music tours in the United States.
He pioneered the successful integration of corporate sponsors with the extreme lifestyle, creating a blueprint for sponsorship integration widely duplicated in the marketplace today. Kevin’s production agency, 4Fini, uses this blueprint to produce some of the most influential events in the world including branded festivals and custom events.
Lately he has been involving himself with lifestyle start-ups like Saint Archer Brewery, Good Dye Young, Plus Ultra bamboo products & Villager Products.
For his philanthropic efforts, Lyman was recognized as the Billboard Touring Awards Humanitarian of the Year (2009), an honoree at the Grammy/MusiCares MAP Fund Gala (2011 and 2014), was inducted into the Top Dog Touring Hall of Fame at the Tour Link Conference (2012) and will receive the TJ Martell Foundation Humanitarian Award (2016).
Women + The Road
Lita Ford’s career began in 1975 as a founding member and guitarist of the groundbreaking all female group the Runaways. The group’s hard rock/punk edge spawned hits like “Cherry Bomb” and “Queens of Noise”. In 2014, Lita and the Runaways proved their timelessness when “Cherry Bomb” was featured in the critically acclaimed movie Guardians Of The Galaxy and was nominated for a Grammy Award.
In 1983 Lita launched her carrier as a solo artist with her début album “Out For Blood” which established her as the premier female performer in rock and heavy metal. Lita quickly followed up in 1984 with the release of “Dancin’ on the Edge” which earned her a Grammy nomination. The album produced the global charting single “Fire In My Heart” and the U.S. Billboard top 50 charting hit “Gotta Let Go”.
2018 celebrates the 30th anniversary of the multi-platinum album “Lita”. Released on February 2nd 1988, the album boasted four hit singles: “Back to the Cave”, “Falling In and Out of Love” (co written with Motley Crue’s Nikki Sixx) along with the global hits “Kiss me Deadly” and “Close my Eyes Forever” featuring Ozzy Osbourne, which remained in the Billboard top 10 for 25 weeks.
The “Lita” album solidified Ford as one of the most influential female performers in the music industry and earning her the title of “Queen of Metal”. She continues to record music and perform for audiences all around the world.
Corrie Christopher Martin
CORRIE CHRISTOPHER MARTIN is renowned for identifying and developing artists. Whether that be alternative rock superstars Imagine Dragons, melodic hardcore favorite Rise Against, or alt-pop/hip-hop innovator K.Flay, Corrie books artists that fans don’t just listen to, but are inspired by. Her current roster also includes Dirty Heads,
Descendents, SWMRS, Sir Sly and R.LUM.R.
Corrie has developed Imagine Dragons from an unknown club act to one of the most successful global touring artists of the past decade.
In August 2017, Corrie produced the LoveLoud Festival in Orem, Utah with Imagine Dragons front man Dan Reynolds. The sold-out event supported Utah’s LGBTQ youth, bringing awareness to the state’s high suicide rates among teens. Corrie is a board member of the LoveLoud Foundation, and was instrumental in developing Dan Reynolds’ ‘Believer’ documentary, which premiers on HBO this summer.
On top of her success in the agency world and LoveLoud, Corrie is a partner in Riot Fest, where she has been involved in reuniting influential artists, such as Jawbreaker, The Original Misfits, and The Replacements, to name a few.
Corrie has been included three times on Billboard’s Women in Music list, and was nominated for Agent of the Year at the 2017 IEBA conference. She serves as a mentor within her team at Paradigm, encouraging young agents to work hard for the artists they believe in.
Since making her debut in 2010, K.Flay has spun fearlessly detailed lyrics that show the bright and dark of the world in her head. For her second full-length Every Where Is Some Where, the L.A.-based alt-pop/hip-hop artist pushed deeper into introspection while adding an element of political commentary. The result is her most deliberate and dynamic work yet, a thrillingly vital album that channels the frenzy and anxieties of today’s world.
The follow-up to her 2016 EP Crush Me — whose lead single “Blood in the Cut” hit the top 5 on Alternative radio — Every Where Is Some Where amps up its defiant spirit with a densely textured yet gritty sound. “After Life as a Dog I was listening to so much late-’90s/early-’00s rock,” says K.Flay, aka Kristine Flaherty, referring to her 2014 full-length debut. “I was absorbing the energy of people like Karen O, Shirley Manson, and Emily Haines and feeling totally inspired by it, so there’s lots more live guitar, bass, and drums on this record.” Working with producers like Mike Elizondo (Twenty One Pilots, Fiona Apple, Regina Spektor, Skylar Grey) and Tommy English (BØRNS, Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness, Ladyhawke), K.Flay deftly infused the album with the same raw intensity she’s revealed in touring with such artists as Passion Pit, Icona Pop, Awolnation, and Theophilus London.
An inimitable lyricist who names novelist Marilynne Robinson among her inspirations, K.Flay also brought a literary sensibility to the making of Every Where Is Some Where. The album’s title, for instance, aims to “capture the flexibility of meaning, the way we fashion our own narratives,” according to Flaherty. “As a songwriter, that’s my main enterprise — looking at the events in my life and engaging in a constant framing and reframing of those events,” she says. “Experience is subjective. We get to decide what’s devastating, what’s beautiful, and what we do next. In the books of our lives, we are both protagonist and narrator. And narrators have incredible power.”
On the lead single from Every Where Is Some Where, K.Flay explores the power of lucid self-acceptance and delivers one of the album’s most blatantly upbeat tracks. Matching her seamless flow with sing-song melody, “High Enough” fuses breezy rhythm and gritty guitar lines into a hopeful meditation on keeping clear-headed. “There are so many songs out there about getting fucked up,” says Flaherty of the song’s inspiration. “I think a part of me was asking the question: ‘What if I’m already high enough? What if I don’t need anything but what I’ve got?’ There are many moments in my life — whether it’s because of a person or a place — that I don’t want to feel altered or high or buzzed. I just want to feel exactly what I’m feeling.”
Kaleidoscopic in mood, Every Where Is Some Where also offers somber moments like “Mean It” — a stunningly vulnerable track built around K.Flay’s outpourings on love and family and lineage. Laced with subtle wisdom (“Remember what you love/So that when the world gets painful/You become your own god”), the starkly arranged song emerged from an especially cathartic writing session for Flaherty. “I wrote ‘Mean It’ in my bedroom in L.A., pretty late at night…the song just came pouring out,” she recalls. “I remember I was crying while I wrote it, which is pretty unusual for me.” “It’s Just a Lot,” meanwhile, came to life while Flaherty was “thinking about the world and how it’s so big and beautiful and sad,” giving way to a blissfully uptempo but sweetly melancholic pop gem.
On “The President Has a Sex Tape,” K.Flay’s measured vocal delivery and throbbing bassline brilliantly clash with her barbed lyrics about the state of the world. “Nothing feels sacred anymore — our highest elected official is a reality television star who is incompetent and openly hateful,” says Flaherty. “The song started out as a lament, but turned into a rallying cry as we finished it. I hope it can be a weird little anthem for people feeling disillusioned or alienated.” That anthemic quality intensifies on “Black Wave,” a powerfully frantic track born from the post-election feeling that “we were all on a beach, looking out at this terrible black wave in the distance, knowing it was going to swallow us whole,” as Flaherty explains. Driven by furious rhythms and urgent vocal work, the song ends up offering a message of resistance and speaks to “facing something immense and menacing and choosing not to cower, but to rise up.”
In a certain way, defiance is at the root of K.Flay’s evolution as a musician. Originally from Illinois, she “fell into music very haphazardly” at age 19 — a decade after her dad taught her to play guitar. “I was in an argument with someone and was challenged to make a song, which was my entry point to music,” says Flaherty, who studied at Stanford University. “From there I started producing and playing house parties on campus, kind of as a release from the academic life. I liked that music was a window into a world with a lot of unpredictability and chaos; it was almost diametrically opposed to my very regimented day-to-day living.”
Upon graduating, Flaherty moved to San Francisco and kept up with music, making her breakthrough with the 2011 mixtape I Stopped Caring in ’96 and landing a deal with a major label. Not long after putting out her 2013 EP What If It Is (featuring a collaboration with Danny Brown), K.Flay launched her own label for the release of Life As a Dog. Then in 2016, she became the first artist signed to Night Street/Interscope Records (an imprint helmed by Imagine Dragons frontman Dan Reynolds), releasing Crush Me that August. “I feel like I’ve somersaulted into everything that’s happened since I first started making music,” says Flaherty. “It’s like I kept slowly turning to the right and ended up doing this for a living, which is pretty amazing to me.”
In creating Every Where Is Some Where, K.Flay hit a new level of complexity and candor in her lyrics, as encapsulated in the stream-of-consciousness storytelling of tracks like “Champagne.” “Details are everything to me,” says Flaherty of that gorgeously unhinged song’s lyrical intricacy. “There are only so many ways that humans feel — but infinite ways to describe and embody those feelings.” And in immersing herself in the process of crafting such lyrics, Flaherty eventually arrived at the realization that “you can understand the fact of your own smallness in this world while still celebrating the very particular singularity of who you are and where you happen to stand.” That moment of truth proved to be an album-defining revelation, and instilled Every Where Is Some Where with an unlikely sense of hope. “Each song on the record is about creating a different kind of meaning out of a different kind of something,” Flaherty says. “Even the dark places are places. You’re still somewhere.”
The Band Perry
Grammy® Award-winning superstar sibling trio The Band Perry are an unstoppable presence in music. Now, after selling two and a half million albums, twelve million singles, and racking up over a billion spins on Pandora and over 600 million song streams, the story of the sibling trio is evolving.
Since releasing their groundbreaking crossover #1 single “If I Die Young” in 2010 (with its current sextuple-platinum status and VEVO certification for 100 million video views), The Band Perry, have forged a unique, genre bending identity and built an international fan base leading to: sold-out world tours, five No. 1 Singles on the Billboard Country Chart, a No. 1 single on the Hot
AC charts, six songs reaching gold or platinum status, and in 2015, brought home their first Grammy® Award. They’ve performed on TV’s biggest stages, from late-night’s most influential (The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel Live, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Late Show with Letterman) to daytime’s most popular (Ellen, Good Morning America, Today, The Talk), and their track “Live Forever” was the theme song for Team USA at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio.
Recently partnering with lnterscope Records, The Band Perry have announced the release of their highly anticipated upcoming third album. It will be the trio’s first pop album due in 2018. In February 2017 The Band Perry introduced this newest musical era with their single “Stay In The Dark”.
Known for their boundary-pushing live performances, the band’s combination of music, fashion, and visual art has become a hallmark of their dialogue with their fans and with the industry. Their third effort boasts collaborations with creators such as Steven Klein, Nicola Formichetti, Jeff Bhasker, Jon Bellion, Benny Cassette, and Julia Michaels. Even with the extraordinary musical and visual concepts they’ve introduced in their career thus far, this next era promises to see the band expanding their boundaries in these realms even further.
Aubrie Sellers forged an upstart kind of country with New City Blues. Driving her own van, hauling gear, independently recorded and absolutely invested, Sellers made an album with almost no acoustic instruments and writes with a voice that’s had Rolling Stone, SPIN and The Village Voice raving. Re-released with extra tracks by Warner Bros., New City Blues is resonating with all kinds of music lovers and has been named a “Best Country Album” by Rolling Stone, Sounds Like Nashville, Taste of Country and more. As one writer says of Sellers’ brazen garage country, “it opens arteries for the future of what country could become.” Sellers was recently named a Pandora “Country Artist to Watch” and one of Bobby Bones’ “Class of 2017” artists.” She has toured with Miranda Lambert, The Cadillac Three, Chris Stapleton and others in the last few years as well as played fairs and festivals in the United States and Europe. She is currently in the studio working on her second record with producer Frank Liddell.
Hailing from Chicago, the electronic sister duo Krewella are active vocal inspirations through their music and editorials. Jahan and Yasmine Yousaf have grown into symbols of female empowerment – personified work ethic that transcended social and gender stigmas to ultimately achieve their dream. As daughters of a Pakistani and Muslim parent, the singer-songwriter sisters represent unconventional success and the American dream.
With heavy rock and dance influences, the girls first burst onto the scene with their Play Hard EP in 2011 as female pioneers of a male-dominated industry. Their single from their debut album ‘Alive’ catapulted onto Top 40 radio, eventually securing their first platinum record hit. Their album topped the iTunes dance charts upon release as well while also placing #8 overall. The demand for their unique DJ / concert live act exploded, as they played in headlining tours and concerts around the world, highlighted by their Coachella and homecoming Lollapalooza debuts. Following their 2016 Ammunition EP, the girls are embarking on their Fall North American Sweatbox Tour & Afterparties. Fans will get to experience the live show in intimate, historic rock venues followed by a raucous DJ set in each respective city’s premiere nightclub.
Krewella is more than an artist – they are a movement. Their bold sense of fashion and rebellious attitude inspired their fans to embrace themselves as they grew into an obsessed collective following affectionately self-dubbed as the #KREW. They are activists who bring awareness to issues they are passionate about to their channels and platforms of millions of fans. From penning op-ed’s in publications like Huffington Post and Billboard to micro-blogging on Tumblr, the sisters’ impact both in and outside music is only scratching the surface.
BIG DATA: How to Turn Consumer Intel into Ticket Sales
Gogi Gupta is the Founder of Gupta Media, a digital marketing agency that specializes in media buying, creative design and technology solutions. Headquartered in Boston, Gupta Media proudly employs more than 50 people.
A graduate of Cornell University, Gogi started his company over 12 years ago, with the goal of creating a better way to buy ads online. As digital advertising has evolved to include mobile, video and social media, among other things, Gogi and his company have been at the forefront of maximizing advertising effectiveness for clients in a number of different industries.
In 2011, Gogi launched smartURL, a global redirect service that automatically send users to the right place based on their location and device. It has revolutionized and streamlined the process of digital marketing, particularly in the music industry, where smartURLs are frequently used by major artists to announce their new albums to the masses.
Gogi is passionate about the ability of data and technology to power solutions that make marketing more efficient and more effective. He has shared his passion and wisdom at industry events for Apple, Sony, Billboard and others.
Gogi lives in Wellesley, Massachusetts with his wife and three daughters. He is an avid sports fan, holding season tickets to the Red Sox while also remaining loyal to the Bills and the Sabres from his former hometown.
Bendheim Professor of Economics and Public Affairs, Princeton University
Alan Krueger is the Bendheim Professor of Economics and Public Affairs at Princeton University. He has published groundbreaking research on the gig economy, minimum wage, value of education, income inequality, terrorism, and rockonomics. Since 1987 he has held a joint appointment in the Economics Department and Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University.
Professor Krueger served as Chairman of President Barack Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers and a Member of the Cabinet from 2011 to 2013. He also served as Assistant Secretary for Economic Policy and Chief Economist of the U.S. Department of the Treasury in 2009-10 and as Chief Economist of the U.S. Department of Labor in 2004-05.
He was elected Vice President of the American Economic Association in 2016, and is the founding President of the Music Industry Research Association (MIRA). He was elected a Fellow of the Econometric Society in 1996, and a fellow of the Society of Labor Economists in 2005. He was awarded the Kershaw Prize by the Association for Public Policy and Management in 1997 (for distinguished contributions to public policy analysis by someone under the age of 40) and the Mahalanobis Memorial Medal by the Indian Econometric Society in 2001. In 2002 Professor Krueger was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, and in 2003 he was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. He was awarded the IZA Prize in Labor Economics in 2006. He was awarded the Moynihan Prize by the American Academy of Political and Social Science in 2017.
He received a B.S. degree from Cornell University in 1983, and A.M. and Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University in 1987.
Live Nation Entertainment
Lisa Licht is the Chief Marketing Officer of US Concerts at Live Nation Entertainment, where she oversees digital marketing, creative, social media, email and promotional marketing as well as corporate marketing functions such as research and insights, strategic partnerships and corporate branding. This year she led the successful launch of the Festival Passport, the launch of the Live Nation Chat Bot as well as the most successful Summer Sale promotion to date. Lisa joined Live Nation last February 2016 as EVP of Marketing.
Licht was previously Senior Vice President of Marketing and Partnerships at Yahoo! where she oversaw global video, news, sports, and lifestyle events and marketing campaigns as well as Live Nation’s live-streaming partnership. Before joining Yahoo, Licht held senior-level positions at both Hasbro and Twentieth Century Fox, setting the strategic direction for entertainment, licensing, and marketing initiatives. At both companies, she is credited with developing some of the largest promotional programs in their respective histories.
Lisa is married to Andy Licht and has 3 children, Lucy, Danny and Joey. Licht graduated from UC Santa Barbara and has an MBA from the American Graduate School of International Management.
With nearly two decades of experience in live events at CAA and as an artist manager, Betsy McHugh has marketed tours for such artists as Keith Urban, Hunter Hayes, Radiohead, Beastie Boys, Foo Fighters, John Mayer, Bon Jovi and dozens more. Now as the CEO and Founder of Hurdl Inc, Betsy is pioneering a new direct relationship with each member of the otherwise unknown live audience attendee by creating interactive experiences that cause fans to engage in real-time.
Olivier Ropars, eBay Vice President and StubHub CMO
As Chief Marketing Officer at StubHub, Olivier oversees StubHub’s global marketing organization, advancing StubHub’s brand to appeal to a global audience across a wider range of live events and expanding the company’s vision to connect people through inspiring live events experiences. Olivier brings extensive global marketing experience to StubHub after spending six years at eBay. Most recently, he was eBay’s Head of Global Performance Marketing where he was instrumental in helping to drive significant global growth over a three-year period. Prior to that role, Olivier was the Senior Director of eBay’s European mobile shopping business. As an engineer with expertise in business, Olivier has also held various roles as a strategist and growth leader in the technology and retail sector, including McKinsey & Company and Motorola, Inc. Olivier is a graduate of UTC Compiegne in France and holds an MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.
KORE Planning & Insights
In his role as President of KORE Planning & Insights (KPI), Russell Scibetti is building a business intelligence consulting division focused on the sports and entertainment industry to help teams, league, venues and providers take full advantage of emerging data and technology platforms. Russell spent his first three years at KORE as the Vice President of Product Strategy where he was responsible for the strategic vision, planning and development of the KORE Ticketing& Fan Engagement™, Sponsorship & Partner Engagement™, Suites &Premium™ and Data Warehouse & Analytics™ applications.
Prior to joining KORE, he was the Director of Relationship and Database Marketing for the New York Jets, where he managed a cross-departmental CRM initiative that connected ticketing, sales, service and marketing to execute multi-channel sales and retention campaigns and provide detailed insights into the team’s corporate and consumer business efforts. In addition to his work with KORE, Russell is the founder and primary author for TheBusinessOfSports.com, an industry blog that discusses practices in sports business and hosts industry networking events around the world. Russell earned his MBA from the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University and his BS in Computer Science from Rutgers University.
Ben Tatta is Co-Founder and President of 605. He brings more than 25 years of media, technology and entertainment experience to his role at the company, where he leads strategy, business development, data and client solutions. Most recently, Ben served as President of Cablevision Media Sales, the television and digital sales division of Cablevision Systems Corporation, where he led the company’s overall media sales vision, strategy and plan including advanced advertising, product development and technology. During his tenure at Cablevision, Ben spearheaded the first system-wide deployment of household-level addressable advertising and pioneered breakthrough audience measurement and analytics solutions using census-level set-top box data. Prior to Cablevision Ben held senior leadership positions at such companies as USA Networks, IBM, ABC, Lagardere Media and eBay Enterprise Marketing. He received a B.A. in Economics from Villanova University.
20/20 vision: Looking through the Lens of Generation Now
Paradigm Talent Agency
Lee Anderson is an agent and a member of the Music Executive Group at Paradigm. He is a driving force behind the success of the agency, representing a diverse group of artists including Skrillex, Zedd, Disclosure, Claude VonStroke, Jacob Banks and Normani. Lee is also overseeing the growth of Paradigm’s hip-hop roster as well individually representing artists that include Gucci Mane, MadeinTYO and London On Da Track in the space. In 2017, he continued to sign and develop breakthrough artists such as Whethan, Berhana, and Westside Gunn & Conway.
Lee has twice been featured in Billboard’s “40 Under 40” list, as well as twice making their “Dance Power Players” list. He has also been nominated for Pollstar’s Bobby Brooks Award for Agent of the Year.
He has fifteen plus years of experience in the live music industry. Starting out as a music lover with a desire to create great events, he took on an internship booking shows while studying marketing at Champlain College in Vermont. This ultimately led to him launching his own concert production company. After six years of promoting concerts in the northeastern U.S., Lee joined boutique dance music agency AM Only in 2008. He rose to the level of vice president at AM Only, which was acquired by Paradigm in 2012 and came under the Paradigm name in 2017.
Chase Fiedler began his career in the music industry at ICM Talent Agency in 2011. Less than a year later, he was hired on to Insomniac’s talent department, where he has been since 2012. Chase is currently the Talent Director, West Coast for Insomniac Events, booking artists for the company’s festival brands, concerts and nightclubs – providing a diverse soundtrack to Insomniac’s festival experience.
Chase’s current and past projects include programming & bookings for EDC Las Vegas, HARD Summer, Life is Beautiful, Nocturnal Wonderland, Escape, Holy Ship!, Countdown NYE, Beyond Wonderland Southern California, Skyline, Crush, We Are NRG, Audio on the Bay, Audiotistic San Francisco, Create Nightclub, and Exchange LA.
Chase is also the GM for Cultivate MGMT – a full service artist management company under the umbrella of Insomniac Events.
Sascha Stone Guttfreund is an entrepreneur based in Austin, Texas. He is President and Cofounder of ScoreMore Shows. ScoreMore has made a name as a tastemaker, booking acts early in their careers in small clubs that have gone on to headline in arenas and amphitheaters. ScoreMore Shows currently routes tours through nine markets in the Southwest United States, producing more than 150 club shows per year. Guttfreund’s team at ScoreMore Shows is also behind some of Texas’ most beloved and fast-growing music festival properties, including JMBLYA, Mala Luna Music Festival and Neon Desert Music Festival. Guttfreund also oversaw one of the most successful and sought-after events in SXSW’s storied history, The ILLMORE, which concluded in 2016. Additionally, Guttfreund oversees a growing artist management division, which includes the acclaimed rapper/singer/songwriter Tory Lanez, whose debut album, I Told You, was released last Fall resulting in a 2017 Grammy Nomination for Best New Artist. Guttfreund has received numerous awards and accolades throughout his career. He was recently named to Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list for 2016, as well as Rolling Stone’s “17 Young Innovators Shaking Up the Music Industry”, with additional profiles in the New York Times, The FADER, Buzzfeed, Texas Monthly, Austin American-Statesman, Houston Press and more.
Paradigm Talent Agency
Paradigm Talent Agency agent Jay Moss has helped foster the touring careers of clients including ODESZA, Louis The Child, TroyBoi, Jai Wolf and Young Fathers. Moss was featured on Billboard’s Dance Power Players 2017 Heatseekers list, as one of the top influencers and innovators who are turning heads in dance music right now.
He also works as an ambassador for MusiCares, the Recording Academy’s charity providing a safety net of critical assistance for music people in a variety of times of need.
Moss got his start in the music industry while attending high school in New York when he interned at Sony Music/Columbia Records. That lead to working with several different management companies in NYC, ultimately landing him at boutique booking agency Flowerbooking, Inc., where he grew from intern to agent in just three years. In 2014, Moss joined The Windish Agency, which was acquired by Paradigm the following year.
Henny Yegezu is based in Los Angeles, California but original from the DC Metropolitan area. Getting his start as a talent buyer and concert promoter he worked across markets Baltimore to Virginia Beach booking various Hip-Hop and Electronic music with a history of being acts first plays in the market. Henny opened up a recording studio that also doubled as his office which connected him closer with the local hiphop scene which later led to discovering RCA Recording artist GoldLink and making a full transition into management by developing GoldLink from the first release to now being Grammy Nominated in 2018. Henny founded Equative Thinking with his partner Dan Friedman who currently manages Metro Boomin and together have developed a roster of rising artist, produces and songwriters. Acts like rising hiphop who just signed to Interscope Smino as well as rising stars like Masego, Berhana , Sevn Thomas and more. His promotion background has served as a great tool to how he tours his acts but now fully emerged into managment his focus and been developing talent form the ground up.
PACKAGING 101: The Art & Science of Synergistic Touring
Electric Forest / Madison House Presents
Alicia Karlin is VP and Senior Event Producer for the ever-innovative Madison House Presents. She is the Talent Buyer for the critically acclaimed Electric Forest festival and oversees many of the aspects of the fan and artist experience.
Alicia began her live music career 15 years ago booking concerts for the University of Florida’s Student Government Productions which led to an internship with AGI working under veteran agent, Dennis Arfa. Alicia moved to Boulder, Colorado in 2006 and was hired by Don Strasburg to open AEG Live Rocky Mountains’ Denver office. In 2007, Alicia began working at Madison House Inc. as an agency and artist management assistant. Her creativity, drive, and resourcefulness landed her a dual-role with Madison House Presents launching the ROTHBURY festival in conjunction with Strasburg and AEG Live. Three years after the creation of Electric Forest, Madison House Presents was acquired by AEG Presents in 2014 and Alicia became VP.
Outside of work, Alicia’s dedication within the music community extends to sitting on the Executive Board of national nonprofit Conscious Alliance, an organization committed to hunger relief and youth empowerment, working with music communities and events to raise much needed money and food donations with local food banks with a focus on our impoverished Native American communities.
Bob Roux is the Co-President of North America Concerts at Live Nation Entertainment, where he oversees all of the operations, bookings and venues in the western half of the United States, a position he has maintained since 2010.
Prior to his appointment to Co-President of North America Concerts in November of 2010, Roux held the position of President for the Dallas / Houston / New Orleans Region for the company and also served on Live Nation Entertainment’s Board of Governors for North America.
Bob has worked for the company and its predecessors since 1990.
Live Nation Canada
Joey Scolari is currently Head of Industry Relations Live Nation Canada. Prior to this he was Senior Vice President of Strategic Marketing Live Nation Entertainment US. He creates marketing strategies which promote superstar artists along with newer talents to connect directly to fans through Live Nation’s vast array of direct and partner fan connection channels.
Joey has worked on tours with Coldplay, Jay Z, Aerosmith, The Weekend, One Direction and many more. Joey spent 12 years at The Disney Music Group working with artists such as Queen, Jonas Brothers, Miley Cyrus, Breaking Benjamin, Rascal Flatts and more in his capacity as VP of promotion and sports marketing.
Joey also worked at Elektra Records and orchestrated campaigns with artists including Metallica, AC/DC and Motley Crue.
Before moving into the management side of the music business he spent over 10 years at Q107 Radio in Toronto as Program Director, Afternoon Drive Host and as a National Television Personality for many years.
Joey currently guest hosts The Jim Rome Show on CBS Sports Radio across North America, NBC Sports Radio and Sportsnet radio nationally and has interviewed everyone from Jerry Bruckheimer and Mark Cuban to Sidney Crosby and Demar Derozan on the shows.
Jay Williams is a well-known industry veteran and Partner at WME, a global leader in sports, entertainment, media and fashion. Williams began his agency career nearly two decades ago in the William Morris mailroom and quickly worked his way through the ranks, learning every aspect of the business from the ground up. He was named IEBA Talent Agent of The Year in 2014 and 2016. Most recently, he was named CMA SRO Agent of the Year for 2017. Williams has helped to guide the careers of country superstars Luke Bryan, Eric Church, Dierks Bentley, Chris Stapleton, and Brothers Osborne, as well as countless others. Additionally, he works with numerous successful cross-genre artists including Dan Tyminski, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Nikki Lane, Blackberry Smoke, J. Roddy Walston & The Business and many more. Williams’s passion for and dedication to the music industry extends far past the walls of the WME Nashville office and into the community. He currently serves as President of the Board of Directors for the Music Health Alliance, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing access to healthcare and health insurance solutions to music professionals. Under his leadership, in less than three years MHA has secured over $6.6 million in life-saving healthcare resources and served almost 2,000 clients across the nation. He is a member of the Country Music Association, the Academy of Country Music, and the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences.
One Song at a Time: How to Change the World
Jon Bon Jovi
Musically and philanthropically, Jon Bon Jovi’s work honors the spirit of America and salutes the principles that define our nation. Self-reliance, optimism and community are key concepts he embodies, in his music and his charitable efforts. These common threads have resulted in heightened awareness on issues that adversely impact our society and millions of dollars raised
He is the frontman of the iconic, Grammy Award winning band Bon Jovi, who have set the bar for over three decades as one of the most successful rock bands in the world. Globally, they have sold more than 130 million albums, performed more than 2,900 concerts in over 50 countries for more than 37.5 million fans.
Mr. Bon Jovi is also the Chairman of the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to bringing about positive change and helping the lives of those in need “one SOUL at a time.” The Soul Foundation focuses on solutions with programs and partnerships targeted at breaking the cycle of poverty and homelessness. To date, Jon Bon Jovi and the Soul Foundation have provided funding for affordable housing for thousands of low-income individuals and families throughout the country.
The Soul Foundation funds partnerships that address the issues of food and shelter, benefitting temporary shelters, transitional housing for teens, permanent supportive housing including housing for vets and special needs populations, as well as home ownership opportunities. In October 2011, the Foundation opened the first JBJ Soul Kitchen in Red Bank, NJ to address issues of food insecurity, and has since served over 70,000 meals. The community kitchen serves nutritious, culinary dishes in a restaurant atmosphere where diners contribute either volunteer hours or a minimum donation for their meals. In May 2016, the Foundation, along with FULFILL (formally known as the FoodBank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties) and The Peoples Pantry (INSPIRE NJ) opened The B.E.A.T. Center (Bring Everyone All Together). The community hub allows families and individuals in need to access food, job training and other resources in Ocean County, N.J. The B.E.A.T. Center houses the second JBJ Soul Kitchen.
Staying true to Bon Jovi’s roots, the Foundation aided in local recovery efforts in the days following Hurricane Sandy in 2012. The following year, Jon Bon Jovi donating $1 million to the Hurricane Sandy New Jersey Relief Fund.
As the Foundation continues to expand, the goal is to assist with rebuilding pride in one’s self and one’s community – one SOUL at a time.
Founder, SB Projects
Scooter Braun is one of the entertainment industry’s most iconic power brokers and the founder of SB Projects, a diversified entertainment and media company with ventures at the intersection of music, film, television, technology, brands, culture and social good. Braun has been lauded as a headliner on Billboard Magazine’s 40 Under 40 List, one of TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World, Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business and named Best Talent Manager at the 2016 International Music Industry Awards. Today, Braun has a roster of the top pop culture icons under his management, record label and publishing companies that include Justin Bieber, Kanye West, Usher, Ariana Grande, Karlie Kloss, Tori Kelly, Carly Rae Jepsen, The Black Eyed Peas and Martin Garrix to name a few.
Braun has broken more new artists than any other music executive in the last decade and now has expanded his reach by establishing a fund, which invests in some of the largest management, media and rights companies in the industry. SB Projects houses a film and television production division which led to Braun making waves in the industry with his first documentary film, Never Say Never, which remains the highest grossing music documentary in domestic box office history. He continues to expand his roster of television and film titles, serving as Executive Producer on films including The Giver (August 2014) and the highly-rated drama series, Scorpion, which will return for season four on CBS in the Fall of 2017. SB Projects also continues to impact new verticals under its tech incubator, Silent Labs, which holds investments in Uber, Spotify, Songza, Casoerm Waze, and Pinterest amongst others.
As Braun continues to expand SB Projects, he remains committed to the company’s founding philosophy of giving back and incorporates a philanthropic element for each new initiative. Braun also serves as Chair to the Advisory Board of Pencils of Promise, a non-profit organization that builds schools in developing countries. The organization has helped to build more than 300 schools in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. He is also on the board of Fuck Cancer, an organization focused on prevention and early detection of cancer, which his wife Yael Braun founded. Braun, his clients, and his companies have – together – granted more wishes for Make-A-Wish than any other organization in the history of the foundation. Recently, Braun was the recipient of two Humanitarian Awards, recognized by Make-A-Wish and Billboard Magazine.
Jason Hirschhorn is CEO of REDEF, a digital content curation company. Previously, Mr. Hirschhorn served as Co-President of Myspace Inc., an affiliate of News Corp. and as President of Sling Media, Inc. He has also served as Chief Digital Officer of MTV Networks. Mr. Hirschhorn currently is on the board of directors of Pandora. Mr. Hirschhorn holds a B.S. in International Business and Marketing from New York University’s Stern School of Business
Sharon Osbourne serves as host of THE TALK, CBS’ Daytime Emmy Award-winning talk show that examines topical events and contemporary issues through the eyes of five female hosts. She hosts alongside Julie Chen, Eve, Sara Gilbert and Sheryl Underwood. Osbourne won the Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show Hosts Daytime Emmy for the first time in 2017. In addition, Osbourne has returned to her role as a judge and mentor on the U.K. version of “The X Factor,” alongside Simon Cowell, Nicole Scherzinger and Louis Walsh.
Osbourne’s career in the music industry has spanned more than 30 years. In addition to managing the career of her husband, she has managed numerous artists such as Black Sabbath, Electric Light Orchestra, Smashing Pumpkins, Motorhead and Slade. In 1996 Osbourne created and produced Ozzfest, the biggest hard rock touring festival in America.
Osbourne’s television career began when she created and produced the cable reality series “The Osbournes,” which starred her husband Ozzy Osbourne and their children and won an Emmy Award for Best Reality Show in 2002. She then leveraged her lengthy professional career in the music industry to become a talent judge on the hit U.K. version of “The X Factor” for five seasons. Osbourne later served as a talent judge for five seasons on “America’s Got Talent.” Also, Osbourne guest starred on CBS’ “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” and Disney’s “7D.” Additional television credits include a role as the voice of “Mama Hook” on the animated show “Jake and the Neverland Pirates” and hosting “The American Music Awards.”
Osbourne is the author of four best-selling books, including Sharon Osbourne Extreme: My Autobiography.
After beating colon cancer, she started the Sharon Osbourne Colon Cancer Program in association with Cedars Sinai Medical Center. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband Ozzy Osbourne and has three children. Follow Sharon on Twitter @MrsSOsbourne and Instagram @sharonosbourne.
Agent vs. Promoter: The Airing of the Grievances
Paradigm Talent Agency
Joe Atamian is an agent at Paradigm, based in Nashville, TN. He got his start booking shows for his friends’ bands in high school and continued his passion for the music industry as the head of the Student Activities Board/Concert Committee at Eastern Illinois University.
He was hired to Monterey Peninsula Artists (now Paradigm) in 2007, where he worked as a ticket counts coordinator and then Jonathan Levine’s assistant. He was promoted to agent in 2010 and since then has developed a diverse roster including The Lumineers, Sturgill Simpson, Big Gigantic, Cherub, Anderson East, Cody Jinks, Whitey Morgan, The Oh Hellos, and more.
Dan Berkowitz is a firm believer in the transformative power of music and is dedicated to creating experiences that are immersive, unforgettable and seamless. Dan started in the music business handing out flyers for his favorite bands while laying the groundwork for CID Entertainment, which he founded in 2007.
Under his leadership, the company has expanded from a one-man operation to a team of more than 70 hardworking, passionate, caring individuals. Headquartered in Philadelphia with offices in Denver and Nashville, CID Entertainment offer enhanced live music and travel experiences at a wide array of events, festivals and tours worldwide.
CID partners inclued Coachella, Bonnaroo, Metallica, MUSE, Blake Shelton, Imagine Dragons, My Morning Jacket and Kendrick Lamar, among others. In 2015, the company launched CID Presents, a boutique event production branch of the company that offers superfans once-in-a-lifetime music destination events, including Luke Bryan’s Crash My Playa and Phish: Riviera Maya.
Bobby Clay began his career in the music business in 2008 as an independent Promoter in Austin, Texas. He founded Polaris Presents with the intent of concentrating solely on filling the void of the new wave of electronic music in Dallas and Austin. After 3 years and hundreds of shows, he joined forces with Austin powerhouse C3 Presents as the head buyer for electronic music for both concerts and festivals.
He currently oversees the electronic music programming for the Lollapalooza’s (Domestic and International), ACL Festival, Bonnaroo, Shaky Beats Festival as well as concerts and club shows in Texas.
Coming up on 10 years in the business he is enthused and dedicated to furthering the electronic footprint globally for years to come.
The Billions Corporation
Ali Hedrick is coming up on her 22nd year at The Billions Corporation as a top earner for the company. She began working at Billions back in 1995 in an office of four and is now the longest running member of the Billions team. Her current roster includes Sufjan Stevens, Glen Hansard, Neko Case, Noname, The New Pornographers, Calexico, Rhye, Bill Callahan, Destroyer, Daniel Lanois, Thao & the Get Down Stay Down and The Swell Season to name a few. As well as being an agent at the company, she is also the festival coordinator, helping the team land and confirm festivals for their roster.
A 10 year veteran of the concert industry, Scott Leslie directs talent buying efforts across FPC Live’s (the merged moniker of Frank Productions and Majestic Live) portfolio of eight venues, and multiple outdoor events. An avid musician, Bruce Springsteen fan and Seinfeld enthusiast, Leslie lives in Madison with his wife, baby daughter and two Labrador retrievers.
From Manchester to Rt. 91: What Have We Learned?
William J. Bratton
William J. Bratton is one of the world’s most respected and trusted experts on risk and security issues. During a 46-year career in law enforcement, he instituted progressive change and dramatic drops in crime while leading six police departments, including seven years as Chief of the Los Angeles Police Department and two nonconsecutive terms as the Police Commissioner of the City of New York. He is the only person ever to lead the police agencies of America’s two largest cities. As the Executive Chairman of Teneo Risk, Commissioner Bratton advises clients on risk identification, prevention, and response. Teneo Risk addresses six key areas: cyber security, infrastructure protection, counterterrorism, health advisory, internal threat mitigation and crisis management. His critically acclaimed autobiography Turnaround, with Peter Knobler, was published by Random House in 1998. In 2012, Mr. Bratton and Zachary Tumin, a senior researcher at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, co-authored a management leadership book, Collaborate or Perish, published by Random House.
Michael P. Downing
Michael DOWNING | Chief SECURITY Officr, Oak View Group/PREVENT ADVISORS – an asset company building, managing, and securing Sport and Music Stadiums in North America
Michael P. Downing brings 35 years of experience to Prevent Advisors. Most recently he served as the Deputy Chief, Los Angeles Police Department and Commanding Officer, Counter-Terrorism and Special Operations Bureau where he led five operational divisions: Major Crimes, Emergency Services Divisions, Metropolitan Division, Air Support Division, and Emergency Operations Division. These divisions include the Anti-Terrorism Intelligence Section, Criminal Investigative Section, Organized Crime, Surveillance Section, Hazardous Devices Section, LAX Bomb K-9 Section, Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT), Mounted Unit, Dive Teams, Emergency Preparedness and Response.
He has worked with the New Scotland Yard’s Metropolitan Police Counter-Terrorism Command SO 15. Deputy Chief Downing has testified before Congressional sub-committee’s relative to intelligence, homeland security, information sharing, and prison radicalization. In April 2010, Chief Downing served as a member of the Department of Homeland Security Advisory Council working group on developing a national strategy for countering violent extremism.
In October 2009, Deputy Chief Downing was appointed as the Interim Police Chief for the Los Angeles Police Department.
Deputy Chief Downing is an active member of the Leadership in Counter-Terrorism (LinCT) Alumni Association, working with alumni from the FBI’s LinCT Program to develop a global enterprise of networked counter-terrorism practitioners from the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Deputy Chief Downing has also worked with the Department of Justice and State Department, traveling throughout South America, Africa, Turkey, Poland, India, and Kenya to transition large national police organizations into democratic civilian policing models and overlay counter-terrorism enterprises on top of cities. His work in counter-terrorism has taken him to Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, Germany, Kenya, India, and France; all to examine smart practices and build a network of practitioners.
Deputy Chief Downing attended the University of Southern California where he received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration in 1982 and completed POST Command College in 1997, the FBI’s Leadership in Counter-Terrorism (LinCT) in 2008, the Post Naval Graduate Executive Program in 2009, and the Senior Management Institute for Police at Boston (SMIP PERF) in 2012. He is currently a Board Member at the George Washington University Center for Cyber and Homeland Security Institute.
Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department
Kevin McMahill began his career with the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department as a police officer and promoted through the ranks. He was appointed undersheriff in November 2014. Kevin has been assigned in leadership positions over the Intelligence Led Policing Bureau, Patrol Division, and the Homeland Security Division.
As the second-in-command, he oversees day-to-day operations of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, which includes the Clark County Detention Center. LVMPD has over 5,600 full time employees and a combined annual budget of one billion.
Kevin helped to lead the LVMPD through the implementation of its body worn camera roll-out, which enabled the department to increase its transparency to the community. The LVMPD was one of the first large police agencies to implement a body worn camera program and has become the model for other departments.
Kevin is a Leadership Las Vegas graduate, has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice, and is a graduate of both the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Leadership in Counter-Terrorism Program and the National Executive Institute.
EVERYBODY IN THE POOL!
Stephen Duval leads 23 Capital’s global strategy and origination. Prior to founding 23, he worked with the Olympic Games, IMG and SFX, after which he went into private consultancy, culminating in his launch of 23 with Jason Traub. Stephen has worked with many of the world’s leading athletes, music artists, entertainers and brands, and advised on or structured more than 100 transactions across the sector before launching 23. Stephen undertook a Masters in Sports Business and Management.
David Marcus is EVP, Head of Music for Ticketmaster, where he is responsible for the company’s largest business segment selling more than 60M concert tickets annually. Before joining Ticketmaster, Marcus was Chief Commercial Officer at ScoreBig, the country’s first name-your-own-price ticketing platform. Before Scorebig, Marcus spent 4 years as Warner Music Group’s SVP, Worldwide Artist Services, where he had direct oversight for the development of new lines of business for the music group, including global touring, ticketing, merchandising, and e-commerce. Previously, he was SVP, Global Music at Ticketmaster, LLC, where he built and led an international team that provided sales and marketing strategy and operational support to touring musical artists. Marcus began his career as an entertainment and intellectual property attorney at O’Melveny & Myers.
United Talent Agency
Flood, Bumstead, McCready & McCarthy
Carmen Romano was born and raised in Northern New Jersey. He graduated Bloomfield College with a B.S. in Accounting in 1985. Upon graduation, he immediately began his accounting career with a mid-size firm in New Jersey.
Romano quickly realized that he had an interest in the entertainment industry and subsequently began working as a staff accountant for the firm Padell Nadell Fine Weinberger and Co. in 1987. He was promoted to Business Manager in 1993. In 1996 Romano became owner and President of Progressive Business Management. On January 1, 2005 Romano opened the New York office for Flood Bumstead McCready & McCarthy Inc., already a prominent Business Management firm in Tennessee, and became a shareholder of the company in 2010.
Romano is Treasurer of the Academy of Country Music and a member of the executive committee. He also currently serves as the treasurer for the Do It for the Love Foundation and is a member of the Country Music Association and the Recording Academy. His clients include Alanis Morissette, Brantley Gilbert, Diplo, Major Lazer, MGMT, Michael Franti, and others. He enjoys hobbies such as running, boating and scuba diving. Romano currently resides in Northern New Jersey with his wife Peggy and three children, Nicole, Gabriella and Michael.
Cal Financial Group
Rit Venerus is the founder and President of Cal Financial Group. Founded in Charlottesville in 2003, the firm has additional offices in Nashville and New York. Cal Financial Group is a full service business management firm that serves entertainers in music film and television as well as professional athletes. Rit’s clients include the likes of Dave Matthews Band, John Mayer, Dead & Company as well as NBA All-Stars Pau Gasol, Marc Gasol and Brook Lopez.
FROM CASUAL LISTENERS TO SUPERFANS: Cultivating Engaged Fan Communities
Julia Heiser oversees Live Nation’s Digital Marketing team: the Digital Media Team, Live Nation’s Social Channels, Touring Promotions, Creative Production and all Ad Technology. Under Julia’s leadership the team handles the launches for over 130 tours, Festivals and Vegas Residencies. In the evolving digital media world, Julia and team must be nimble in expanding the arsenal so that the fan in all of us never misses another show. This task has grown evermore important in Live Nation’s touring business, as stakeholders expect more direct to fan access than ever before, while fans demand the most fluid connectivity to the live event experience as possible. Ad tech. Content Creation. Rallying the troops. Digital & Social Strat/ Innovation. Moving at the speed of light because the tour announce is moving up to yesterday… Whether pitching managers, agents or the creators themselves, the mission is always rooted in maintaining perpetual creativity.
Rishi Shah has 10+ years of experience working on projects at the intersection of music and technology.
He started his own digital strategy agency, Versus Creative, almost four years ago and has worked for and with major & independent labels, the top managers in the music business, digital agencies, and some of the biggest festivals in the world to develop their content distribution and marketing strategy from ideation to execution.
Versus Creative specializes in digital platforms, culture marketing, strategic partnerships, and web design & development. They produce tactical audience engagement solutions with on- and offline functions with a best-in-class social team, industry-acclaimed thought leaders and a track record for building innovative experiences that deliver impactful results.
Currently working with: Goldenvoice, Monotone Management, Spotify, DanceOn, Vinyl Me, Please, and 15+ artists.
Marcie Allen leverages her more than 23 years of music industry experience to negotiate high-profile partnerships between the world’s leading brands and artists. Allen has brokered and executed multi-faceted programs on behalf of brands including: Sony, Southwest Airlines, YouTube, Microsoft, Verizon, Samsung, Citi, Capital One, Delta, AT&T and artists including Chance the Rapper, Khalid, Foo Fighters, Rolling Stones, Green Day, Lady Antebellum, Billy Joel, John Legend, Imagine Dragons, and Keith Urban. She is an eleven-time nominee and six-time winner of Billboard’s “Concert Marketing and Promotion Award” and has been named to Billboard’s “Women in Music” list every year since 2010. Allen was included in Billboard’s “Branding Power Players” list in 2016 and 2017, named to the first-ever “Hip-Hop Power List” in 2017, honored on the publications “40 Under 40” list in 2013 and has also received Billboard’s Humanitarian Award.” Variety New York Impact List,” representing the most powerful women in entertainment.
Prior to starting MAC Presents, Allen owned and operated Nashville/ Atlanta based MAD Booking & Events, which produced more than 100 music festivals across the country including On the Bricks in Atlanta. Allen is currently an adjunct professor at NYU Steinhardt and Clive Davis Music Institute of Recorded Music; sits on the board of directors for The Country Music Association, serves on the advisory board for Berklee College of Music and recently completed terms with the board of directors for Global Poverty Project and Musicians on Call. Marcie was a member of the 2016 Cannes Lions Entertainment Music jury and served on the 2016 Clio Music jury, was named to Nashville Business Journal’s “Women in Music City” list every year since 2014 and was recognized by Nashville all-girls college preparatory school Harpeth Hall as their Distinguished Alumna of 2017.
Scott Aller started his career off as a professional touring musician. Today, he oversees the global marketing, branding, new market growth and lead generation efforts for KORE Software, a live entertainment data and analytics software company. He’s responsible for the commercialization of KORE Software and KORE Planning and Insights (KPI) through product positioning, communications, advertising, digital content, partnerships and promotions. Prior to joining KORE Software, Scott Aller was a Director of Client Development at Ticketmaster/LiveNation where he quarterbacked the support, strategy and growth plans for a portfolio of performing arts center clients.
Paul Bassman is a leading figure in the world of entertainment insurance and risk management services. He leads his staff with a mantra of integrity and an aim to best protect the assets of all clients, which together feature an extraordinary collection of hundreds of the top entertainment industry companies in North America.
Prior to the insurance business Paul spent 15 years in the music industry as a manager of platinum artists, A&R for Capitol Records, concert promoter and label owner – providing a hands on real world understanding of his clients’ business.
Live Nation Merchandise
Rick Fish is a long-time executive in the music merchandising business. His career started with Bill Graham and Winterland Productions. Rick is currently EVP of Artist Relations and Acquisitions at Live Nation Merchandise.
Andrew Hampp joined MAC Presents in 2015, and is focused on helping companies build industry-leading music strategies and experiences. His work with brand clients Citi and Bud Light has been recognized by the Clios and the Billboard Touring Awards, and artists he’s represented to brand partners include Chance The Rapper, Khalid, Andra Day, Wyclef Jean and Taylor Bennett, among many others.
In addition to his role at MAC, Hampp is a regular to contributor to Billboard, where he previously spent four years as a senior correspondent leading coverage of music business, advertising and tech and interviewed notable personalities for cover stories. Hampp also writes a weekly column for Variety, “Songs For Screens,” which is dedicated to spotlight music in synch licensing for commercials, TV and film. Prior to Billboard, Hampp spent five years at Advertising Age, including two as L.A. bureau chief, and has contributed stories to The Hollywood Reporter, Vulture.com,The Columbus Dispatch and Adweek. He has also appeared as a speaker on “Today,” “Good Morning America, “CBS Morning News, CBS Sunday Evening News, CNN, Bloomberg and CNBC.
Alan Krueger is the Bendheim Professor of Economics and Public Affairs at Princeton University. He has published groundbreaking research on the gig economy, minimum wage, value of education, income inequality, terrorism, and rockonomics. Since 1987 he has held a joint appointment in the Economics Department and Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. Professor Krueger served as Chairman of President Barack Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers and a Member of the Cabinet from 2011 to 2013. He also served as Assistant Secretary for Economic Policy and Chief Economist of the U.S. Department of the Treasury in 2009-10 and as Chief Economist of the U.S. Department of Labor in 2004-05. He was elected Vice President of the American Economic Association in 2016, and is the founding President of the Music Industry Research Association (MIRA). He was elected a Fellow of the Econometric Society in 1996, and a fellow of the Society of Labor Economists in 2005. He was awarded the Kershaw Prize by the Association for Public Policy and Management in 1997 (for distinguished contributions to public policy analysis by someone under the age of 40) and the Mahalanobis Memorial Medal by the Indian Econometric Society in 2001. In 2002 Professor Krueger was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, and in 2003 he was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. He was awarded the IZA Prize in Labor Economics in 2006. He was awarded the Moynihan Prize by the American Academy of Political and Social Science in 2017. He received a B.S. degree from Cornell University in 1983, and A.M. and Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University in 1987.
Effect Partners/Music Matters
Michael Martin is the founder and CEO of Effect Partners, and a recognized innovator in sustainability and social change campaigns. for the last 28 years, starting with the non-profit, Concerts for the Environment. Effect Partners is a social change enterprise that leverages the power of music, art and culture to create positive impact and build brands. From U2 and Jack Johnson to leading organic and natural consumer packaged goods like Stonyfield, and Clif Bar, Effect Partners develops innovative programs and partnerships with leading environmental non-profits and thought leaders that drive business results, while achieving a positive social impact. Some current Effect Marketing projects include the U2 Joshua Tree Tour, Apple, Toyota, UPS, Bon Iver and efforts to make the world become more “veganish.”
Michael first started his mission nearly three decades ago through his nonprofit, Concerts for the Environment. He created the first ever National global warming campaign (Ben & Jerry’s Dave Matthews Band One Sweet Whirled), catalyzing the top 20 environmental organizations to work together for the first time on this critical issue. Called the “Green Guru” by Billboard magazine, Michael has created or co-created numerous social change tools including the EnviroRider™ (the “bible” for green touring), Climate Counts, Native Energy, CO2 offsets for the music industry, r.Cup, and a line of food with Ziggy Marley to address GMO issues. Michael currently sits on the Board of the University of Minnesota Institute on the Environment, The Big Know, People’s Organic and Climate Counts. Every 5 years, he produces the Earth Day Rally on the Mall in Washington DC, attended by over 500,000 people He is a 25-year member of Social Venture Network. Michael lives in Minneapolis, MN with his YPO Member wife, Gwen Martin, and 5 of the best kids in the world.
Lucy Aigust-Perna leads the strategy and integration of environmental sustainability into the operations and management of Live Nation’s US Owned & Operated amphitheaters. With 14 years of experience in environmental and social sustainability and 10 years in the music industry, she recognizes the unparalleled opportunity the music industry has to leverage the power of live music for good. Lucy has toured with Dave Matthews Band and U2 as their Tour Greening Manager and worked alongside Jack and Kim Johnson to help develop their All At Once campaign and Village Green, which engaged thousands of fans globally in environmental action. Lucy continues to work in partnership with Live Nation venue teams to implement and build on best practices in waste reduction and diversion including food donation programs, recycling, and composting.
Based out of New-York, Fabrice Sergent is a tech entrepreneur with experiences in the music and digital media industries. He has spent 10 years in Europe and equal time in the US, leading 2 start-ups from inception to $100m+ in revenues. Fabrice is also a director of the Mobile Giving Foundation since 2009, serving 800 charities in the US and Canada. Sergent launched his first start-up as Founder and CEO of Club-Internet, one of the very first French consumer Internet Service Provider (ISP). Club-Internet was sold to Deutsche Telekom’s T-Online for €1.2 billion in 2000 with close to one million subscribers when he left the company. He has spoken at prominent music and tech events including Pollstar Touring Conference, Midem, REVOLT Music Conference, DLD, MWC’s 4YFN and the Glimpse Social Discovery Conference.
United Talent Agency
A pioneer in the casino entertainment world, Seth Shomes started in the gaming industry by founding Day After Day Productions (DADP) in 1996, an independent music agency which enjoyed an unmatched footprint in the casino world for close to two decades. Through his close relationship with The Agency Group (TAG), Seth merged DADP with TAG in 2014 where he created the industry’s first dedicated casino division at a worldwide agency. In short time, Seth built TAG’s Casino Division from minimal casino bookings to a multi-million dollar business. When TAG was acquired by United Talent Agency (UTA) in 2015, Seth lived up to his reputation, founding the first Casino Division at a major agency, where he now oversees the music and non-traditional touring rosters throughout the gaming industry.
Affectionately known as “the casino guy” throughout the entertainment industry, Seth’s client roster reads like a “who’s who” of major icons, celebrities and theatrical productions including Toni Braxton, Paula Abdul, Brian Wilson, Paul Anka, George Benson, The Isley Brothers, The Commodores, Staind, Aaron Lewis, Rob Thomas’ Sidewalk Angels Foundation, Skid Row, Billy Ocean, Christopher Cross, Million Dollar Quartet, Nitro Circus, The Clairvoyants, The Hollywood Medium Tyler Henry, and Jeff Bridges & The Abiders.
According to top casino executives, what sets Seth apart from other agents is his belief that his job does not begin and end once a deal is finalized. Constantly striving for situations that are mutually beneficial, Seth is there every step of the way to help achieve the goals of his artists and casinos, making him one of the most recognized and trusted figures in the gaming industry.
Seth’s presence in the gaming entertainment industry has made itself felt by winning the American Gaming Association’s prestigious “Casino Agent Of The Year” title three years in a row (2015, 2016 & 2017).
Lauren M. Spahn
Shackelford, Bowen, McKinley & Norton, LLP
Lauren M. Spahn is an associate attorney of Shackelford, Bowen, McKinley & Norton, LLP, in the Firm’s Nashville office. Ms. Spahn represents the legal and business interests of recording artists, songwriters, publishers, promoters, producers, managers, agents, executives, record labels, musicians, networks, banks, and other entertainment industry clients. Lauren also handles complex transactional and litigation matters related to copyright, trademark and intellectual property law. Ms. Spahn holds a Masters in Music Business and Entertainment Industries and Juris Doctorate from the University of Miami.
As an industry leader in event and festival security, Rob Weekes and his team manage security for 30 to 40 major events per year. Rob is currently the Director of Security for Insomniac Events, the ever changing Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas, NV being their flagship event hosting 140,000 guest per day over a three-day weekend.
Rob’s past experience includes working security management for Black Widow Group, Prime Social, Live Nation and Golden Voice/AEG. You’ve seen Rob at red carpet events such as the Grammys, BET Awards, Golden Globes and countless movie premieres. His experience in entertainment management for San Manuel Indian Bingo & Casino and Lost Prevention & Alcohol Control Management for Best Beverage Catering as well as touring expands his experience. Rob Weekes is also a 23-year Navy Veteran.
UNDERGROUND TO MAINSTREAM: What Are Metal and Hip-Hop Doing Right (And Where Does It Go From Here)
As a respected veteran of the music industry, Josh Bernstein currently serves as the Director of Live Events for Townsquare Media, creating custom event solutions for their national brands such as XXL, Loudwire, Taste Of Country, Ultimate Classic Rock, PopCrush and Diffuser. Over the past decade he has co-created and produced the Revolver Golden Gods Awards, The Loudwire Music Awards, The Alternative Press Music Awards and the Rock & Roll Roast Series; working with top-tier talent like Metallica, Twenty One Pilots, Marilyn Manson, Johnny Depp, Ozzy Osbourne, Joan Jett, Panic! At the Disco, Mötley Crüe, Fall Out Boy and Dave Grohl. He has also successfully created broadcast partnerships with Amazon, Twitch, VH1, MTV2, Apple Music, AXS TV, SiriusXM and Xbox LIVE. In addition, Josh serves on the GRAMMY selection committee for Hard Rock and Heavy Metal.
Rich Best is Live Nation’s President of Booking for Los Angeles, overseeing the booking department and strategy for Southern California. He was named President in 2016 and oversees regions from Fresno to Orange County. Best started his career at the legendary First Avenue nightclub and 7th Street Entry in downtown Minneapolis. In the early 1990s Best developed relationships with some of the world’s biggest names in music including Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Nirvana, and Smashing Pumpkins. He worked at Compass Entertainment before joining Clear Channel Entertainment in 2002 where he served as the VP of Talent Booking for Minneapolis, North Dakota, South Dakota, and portions of Wisconsin. He relocated to Los Angeles in 2005 to grow the Live Nation presence, which was formed from the Clear Channel Entertainment division. He has been nominated multiple times as talent buyer of the year and independent concert promoter of the year by the Pollstar Awards.
5B Artist Management
Cory Brennan is the Founder/CEO of 5B Artists + Media. The company was founded ten years ago, and is a global rock powerhouse with offices in Los Angeles, New York and London. 5B manages some of the most iconic and cutting edge artists in rock, metal and punk. In addition to management, 5B, along with long-time management client Slipknot, created and launched the global rock festival, Knotfest. Now in it’s tenth year, Knotfest has become one of the world’s largest destination rock music festivals, with over five hundred thousand tickets sold and festivals in Tokyo, Mexico City, Colombia, Sao Paolo and the United States.
Brennan has always been a staunch advocate of the independent music sector, spending the early part of his career working at groundbreaking record labels such as Triple X Records (Jane’s Addiction), Beggars Banquet (The Cult, Prodigy), and Roadrunner Records (Slipknot, Type O Negative, Nickelback) before joining Sanctuary Music Group in 2000. While at Sanctuary, Brennan served as General Manager of Sanctuary Records (Robert Plant, Neil Young, Iron Maiden) and Manager at Sanctuary Artist Management. It was during this time that Brennan began making a name for himself in the rock management business signing Slipknot, Wolfmother and others.
Shortly after Sanctuary was purchased by Universal Music Group in June 2007, Brennan launched 5B Artist Management as a joint venture with Universal. After six successful years of their joint venture, Brennan decided to take the company fully independent. Brennan and 5B’s deep understanding of the genre and culture it creates, as well as their unwavering dedication to the artists they represent sets them apart. 5B has steered some of the most successful campaigns in rock with several Number One Billboard Albums, New York Times Best Selling Books, Feature Film Productions, Award Winning Beer and Strategic Partnerships with other brands and ventures across numerous platforms.
This multi-talented Grammy Award-winning and multi-platinum selling artist, composer and actor is one of the most popular and successful rappers worldwide. Coolio, aka Artis Leon Ivey Jr, has sold over 30 million records globally and has performed in concerts to adoring fans across the world, from Africa to Japan. His 1995 hit ͚Gangsta͛s Paradise͛ catapulted Coolio onto the global stage, reaching #1 in the charts in USA, UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Austria, Netherlands, Norway, Switzerland, Australia and NewZealand. The track received several awards including Best Rap Solo Performance at the Grammy Awards, and Best Rap Video and Best Video From A Film at the MTV Music Awards. Since his inauguration into the music industry, Coolio has produced and released five successful albums entitled It Takes A thief, Gangsta͛s Paradise, My Soul, El Cool Magnifico and The Return Of The Gangsta. His reputation spurred on major collaborations and releases that have received raving reviews and continued to capture the essence of Coolio͛s convincing talents. He͛s had an interesting career where he has made plenty of appearances in television and movies, mostly performing small roles or cameos. Such appearances include Sabrina: The Teenage Witch, Batman & Robin, The Nanny, Gang Warz, Daredevil, In Pursuit and On The Line with many more. As well as being a musical superstar, Coolio has also had numerous cameo roles intelevision and movies and also appeared in UK͛s Celebrity Big Brother. In the diversified hip hop industry, Coolio is one of the few rap artists who has been able to garner mainstream success and critical acclaim.
Shawn “Clown” Crahan
More commonly known by his stage persona “Clown”, Shawn Crahan is an American musician, songwriter, record producer, director and photographer. He is best known as one of the two custom percussionists and co-founder of the Grammy Award-winning heavy metal band Slipknot. When performing with Slipknot, he is also known as Number 6. Crahan is the only remaining founding member in Slipknot.
Crahan is the oldest member of Slipknot, and has been largely responsible for the band’s success with his extensive involvement in Slipknot’s media production, directing Slipknot’s music videos. Outside Slipknot, Crahan had two side project bands called To My Surprise and Dirty Little Rabbits. He also directed the 2016 film, Officer Downe.
Ask in-the-know kids around the DC area who’s who and what’s what, and you’re likely to hear
an unusual four-letter nickname: Modi. With a goofy charm and honest ear, 31-year-old Modele
“Modi” Oyewole has become a lightening rod in the District’s thriving music scene through his
DCtoBC imprint and annual Trillectro Music Festival, which boasted nearly 10,000 attendees at
its latest installment.
The story starts in 2007, when the then-Boston College junior co-founded DCtoBC with two college
friends and DC natives as a radio show/blog and built a grassroots following on campus and
beyond—since then, he’s lived in NYC, Portland, Los Angeles, and has worked with Def Jam,
Complex, Nike, and most recently Red Bull, as well as forecasting the careers of Kid Cudi,
Drake, Wale, Wiz Khalifa, J. Cole, Kendrick Lamar, SZA, Kehlani and Lil Uzi Vert. But it isn’t
resume stripes that have garnered him esteem in classrooms and boardrooms alike: Modi’s genuine
love for the culture shines through all his work within it. The self-professed Pharrell Williams super fan
wears his passions, interests and opinions on his sleeve, and is a champion for all things dope. It’s this
refreshing worldview that’s helped Modi bring unforgettable experiences to his city, and the reason everyone knows his name.
Danny Wimmer Presents
Danny Wimmer’s career as a music industry taste-maker started more than 20 years ago as a promoter for the Warped Tour and other regional arena shows in his home town of Jacksonville, FL. He was a co-owner of Jacksonville’s Milk Bar, which quickly became known for featuring the latest up-and-coming artists. It was at the Milk Bar that Wimmer first discovered Limp Bizkit and brought them to the attention of Flawless Records. Wimmer then spent 10 years as a senior record company executive at Flawless/Geffen, Epic and Atlantic where he discovered and made records with Limp Bizkit, Staind, Puddle of Mudd, Kenna, and Operator. While still at Atlantic Records, Wimmer launched his first major festival, Rock on the Range, in 2007. After adding Welcome To Rockville, Carolina Rebellion and Epicenter to his festival roster, he left Atlantic and formed Danny Wimmer Presents (DWP) in 2011. As DWP has grown, he continues to oversee the curation of music, art, and entertainment at all DWP festivals. Wimmer’s leadership in the music business was highlighted in Malcom Gladwell’s book Blink. He also serves on the metal/rock committee for the Grammys.
BEHIND THE GRAMMY AWARDS SHOW
The Grammy Awards
Scott Goldman, Los Angeles, Executive Director, GRAMMY Museum. Goldman joined the Recording Academy as Vice President of the GRAMMY Foundation and the MusiCares Foundation in December 2005. Prior to that, he was Vice President of Development at City of Hope. From 1991 to 2005 he ran the organization’s fundraising efforts within the music and entertainment industries. He also oversaw City of Hope’s network of 10 regional fund raising offices around the country. Goldman joined City of Hope in 1989, serving in a variety of regional and national development positions. Throughout his tenure he lead the organization’s fundraising within music and entertainment industry. He began his fundraising career in 1983 with United Cerebral Palsy in Northern California. In 1985, he joined the March of Dimes Bay Area chapter as San Francisco Division Director. He went on to found the Northern California Chapter of the RP Foundation Fighting Blindness in 1987. Since spring 2009 he has hosted over 400 public programs at the GRAMMY Museum. Goldman became the Executive Director of the GRAMMY Museum on February 1, 2017. A native of New York, Goldman received his Bachelor of Science degree in theatre from Skidmore College.016).
The Recording Academy
Neil Portnow represents the Academy to its constituents, to its partners, and to music fans, and serves as an industry leader on issues relating to the music industry — including participation in national caucuses, conferences, roundtables, and keynotes, as well as testifying before Congress. Recipient of City of Hope’s Spirit of Life Award, UJA Federation of New York’s Music Visionary of the Year, George Washington University’s Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award, honorary Doctorate from Berklee School of Music, listed in Billboard magazine’s Power 100 and the Variety500 industry lists. Previously, President/CEO, the GRAMMY Foundation; senior vice president, West Coast operations, Zomba Group of Companies; music supervisor for feature films; VP, EMI America Records; VP and general manager, Arista Records-West Coast; president, 20th Century Fox Records; VP A&R & staff producer, RCA Records; and manager talent acquisition & development, Screen Gems Music. Independent producer, professional musician (bass guitar). Past Los Angeles Chapter Trustee; National Finance Committee; National Planning Committee; National Vice President; National Secretary/Treasurer (’01 -’02).
WHEN THINGS GO OFF THE RAILS
Paul Bassman is a leading figure in the world of entertainment insurance and risk management services. He leads his staff with a mantra of integrity and an aim to best protect the assets of all clients, which together feature an extraordinary collection of hundreds of the top entertainment industry companies in North America.
Prior to the insurance business Paul spent 15 years in the music industry as a manager of platinum artists, A&R for Capitol Records, concert promoter and label owner – providing a hands on real world understanding of his clients’ business.
Kasey McKee Branand
Live Nation Entertainment
Carrie Davis is the Chief Communications Officer of Live Nation Entertainment (NYSE: LYV), the largest live entertainment company in the world, with 30,000 employees and $8.4 billion in 2016 revenue. Carrie assumed her current role in 2015, and she leads all internal and external communications globally. She reports to Live Nation Founder and CEO Michael Rapino. As CCO, she advises the C-suite on all corporate communications topics, including financial, M&A, legal, investor, governmental affairs and crisis communications. She also provides strategic leadership to all divisions of the company: Ticketmaster, Sponsorship and Media, Artist Nation, Concerts and Touring, and House of Blues. The publicity portfolio that she oversees reaches 70 million fans per year, and it includes 26,000 live events, more than 500 artists under management and 85 music festivals.
Previously, she served as Vice President of Communications for Disney Interactive, the digital entertainment division of the Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS). She reported to the President of the division and to Disney’s Chief Communications Officer, and she managed a team of 20 public relations and events staffers. She led communications for Disney Interactive in all major functions: corporate, crisis, product, technology, B2B, executive, internal, events and social media. This included leading communications through Disney Interactive’s turnaround and first year of profitability, managing the response to legal issues, including criminal investigations and developing a strategy around workforce reductions and executive departures.
Before joining Disney, from 2010 to 2011, she held the role of Vice President of Communications at IAC-owned (Nasdaq: IAC) Match.com, the largest dating site in the world. In addition to her responsibility for communications and media relations for Match and its subsidiaries, she developed national campaigns to shift the perception of online dating as a whole and highlight Match.com’s specific brand differentiators.
From 2006 to 2010, she was the Director of Communications for Yahoo (NYSE: YHOO), leading communications for the company’s media group and overseeing public relations for its 15-property communications division. She led the division’s communications for functions such as M&A and quarterly earnings, and she managed PR efforts for media services launches and content/advertising partnerships. In 2005 she was named Account Supervisor for Marketing Communications and Corporate at Hill+Knowlton, where she was responsible for strategic planning and management of day-to-day activities for clients like Ford’s (NYSE: F) Race for the Cure, Sony Pictures (NYSE: SNE) and Adidas (ETR: ADS). She previously served as a Senior Account Executive at GolinHarris, where she developed full-service public relations programs for clients including Nintendo of America (TYO: 7974) and Nestle (VTX: NESN), from 2004 to 2005.
She began her career as the founder of Plugged In Public Relations, a boutique public relations firm from 1999 to 2004. There, she spearheaded media campaigns for entertainment and corporate clients, including Simmons Lathan Media Group, Universal Records, Epic Records and more. She also acted as publicist for Grammy-nominated artists Aaliyah, Timbaland, De La Soul, Wu-Tang Clan and Everlast. She served on the Board of Directors for the Christopher Wallace (Notorious B.I.G.) Memorial Foundation alongside music industry executives such as Sean Combs, among others.
Carrie serves on the Board of Directors of Project Maverick, an experiential platform for girls, parents and allies created to inspire the next generation of independent thinkers and doers.
She graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Pennsylvania.
Duggan Bertsch LLC
Tim Epstein serves as a partner at Duggan Bertsch, and brings to the Firm a reputation as one of the top lawyers in sports and entertainment in the country. In the entertainment world, Tim serves as counsel to the owners of venues and the producers of over twenty major music festivals and events including Pitchfork Music Festival, Life is Beautiful, Riot Fest, and 29Rooms from Refinery29. Tim’s work in this space spans North America, counseling clients in all aspects of the business including contract negotiation and drafting, risk management, insurance needs, claims management, and strategic consulting.
Tim is an “AV Preeminent Rated” attorney, and is rated by both Super Lawyers© and Emerging Lawyers© publications. Tim was most recently honored as one of the Law Bulletin’s 40 under 40 Attorneys to watch.
Tim is also an Adjunct Professor of Law at Loyola University Chicago School of Law, currently teaching courses in Sports and Entertainment Law. Tim has also served as a legal analyst for ABC, Fox, and WGN.
Tim is an accomplished legal writer, published as an author and contributor in nationally respected law reviews, periodicals, and bar association publications including the New York Times, Crain’s Chicago Business, USA Today, ESPN the Magazine, the American Lawyer, and the Sports Business Journal.
Tim is actively involved with the Bunkers in Baghdad charity, and has served as an Advisory Council member at the Fetzer Institute, and a Selection Committee member for the Tillman Military Scholars program.
KEYNOTE Q&A: WITH GARTH BROOKS
Garth Brooks just won Entertainer of the Year at the CMA Awards for a sixth time, a first for any artist. He is also the first artist in history to receive 7 Diamond awards for the now seven albums certified by the RIAA at over 10 million album sales each and remains the #1-selling solo artist in U.S. history certified by the RIAA with over 148 million album sales. He has received every accolade the recording industry can bestow on an artist. Garth has been inducted into the International Songwriters Hall of Fame in New York, the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, Country Music Hall of Fame and most recently, the Musicians Hall of Fame.
Garth just wrapped the Garth Brooks World Tour with Trisha Yearwood. The tour began with 11 sold out shows at the Allstate Arena in Chicago. The tour smashed records previously held by such acts as The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and even Garth Brooks. In a little over three years, the tour has sold over 6.4 million tickets, making it the biggest North American tour in history and the biggest American tour in the world.
Garth has also launched Inside Studio G, a weekly Facebook Live series. It airs every Monday on Garth’s Facebook page at 7:00 PM EST. You can follow him at: https://www.facebook.com/GarthBrooks, https://twitter.com/garthbrooks, http://instagram.com/garthbrooks. For more information please visit www.garthbrooks.com.
David Kells has been with Bridgestone Arena and the Nashville Predators since 2005. During his tenure he has served as the Conversion Manager, Event Manager, Director of Marketing, Senior Director of Booking and is currently the Senior Vice President of Events and Marketing.
David quickly developed a passion for live entertainment after working his first concert at the age of 18 and is proud to have been part of Nashville’s live entertainment community ever since. Over the course of his career he has worked for SFX Entertainment, Great Big Shows, and AC Entertainment. Prior to joining the Bridgestone Arena staff David helped manage the legendary Exit / In and has been involved in producing such festivals as Dancin’ In the District (Nashville, Tenn.), Sundown in the City (Knoxville, Tenn.) and Birmingham City Stages (Birmingham, Ala.).
In addition to helping oversee Bridgestone Arena’s rise to one of the top venues in the U.S. and the 2014 Pollstar Arena of the Year award, Kells has received personal recognition for his hard work in the industry. Kells was named the International Arena Buyers Association’s Venue Executive of the Year in 2014 and 2016 and has been nominated for Pollstar’s Facility Executive of the Year 5 times. A lover of hockey from a young age, David’s hockey career peaked in 1980 when he received the Most Improved Player Award from the Massena Minor Hockey Association.
Jason Gastwirth is Senior Vice President of Marketing and Entertainment at Caesars Entertainment, where he is responsible for the live entertainment programming across the company’s 40+ venues nationwide – with Caesars recognized as the #3 live entertainment promoter in the world based on ticket revenues — as well as the company’s brand alliances/sponsorship and tv and film production divisions. Gastwirth spearheaded the successful launch of the world-class theater The Axis at Planet Hollywood that hosts residencies featuring Jennifer Lopez, Lionel Richie, Pitbull and Backstreet Boys. Prior to joining Caesars, Gastwirth served as the Chief Marketing Officer of the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas and also worked at Las Vegas Sands Corp. as Vice President of Casino Marketing and Corporate Entertainment. Before joining the hospitality and entertainment industry, Gastwirth held strategy positions in San Francisco and New York at Gap Inc. and management consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton. Gastwirth earned his bachelor’s degree in government with honors at Harvard University and his MBA at Stanford University. Gastwirth was recognized as “40 Under 40” by Vegas Inc. magazine in 2012. He has a wife and three daughters, and serves on the America Cancer Society’s Southern Nevada Leadership Board and the Tyler Robinson Foundation Gala Organizing Committee.
Kurt Melien is the President of Live Nation Las Vegas, overseeing the Las Vegas business for Live Nation’s North American Concerts Division, including the arena business and its portfolio of artist residencies.