MADONNA SECURES NEW CAREER SPANNING DEAL
FOR RECORDED & PUBLISHING WITH WARNER MUSIC GROUP
Madonna and Warner Music Group (WMG) today announced a milestone, career-spanning global partnership that includes a new agreement for her entire recorded music catalog. With global sales of over 300 million records, Madonna is the best-selling female artist of all time, with countless accolades that include seven GRAMMY Awards, 24 ASCAP Pop Music Awards, and numerous international trophies, including BRIT, Bravo Otto, Danish Music, Edison, GAFFA, International Dance Music, Ivor Novello, Juno, MTV, World Music Awards, among many others across the globe. She was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2008.
This partnership marks the revitalization of a decades-long relationship with WMG that began with the release of Madonna’s debut single in 1982. The deal encompasses her entire Sire/Maverick/Warner catalog, including global smash albums such as Madonna, Like a Virgin, True Blue, Like a Prayer, and Ray of Light. It also includes her three most recent studio albums, MDNA, Rebel Heart, and Madame X, which will join the Warner catalog beginning in 2025. The new pact includes 17 studio albums plus singles, soundtrack recordings, live albums, and compilations.
Warner Chappell Music also globally administers all of Madonna’s songwriting work. This features such top-charting hits as “Like A Prayer,” “Vogue,” “Into the Groove,” “La Isla Bonita,” “Live to Tell,” “True Blue,” “Open Your Heart,” “Who’s That Girl,” “Express Yourself,” “Lucky Star,” “Take A Bow,” and many more.
2022 will mark the 40th anniversary of Madonna’s recording debut. This new deal heralds the launch next year of an extensive, multi-year series of catalog releases that will revisit the groundbreaking music that made her an international icon. For the first time, Madonna will personally curate expansive deluxe editions for many of her landmark albums, as well as introduce unique releases for special events, and much more. The series of releases will be overseen by Warner Music’s catalog team, led by Kevin Gore, President of Global Catalog, Recorded Music, with the first release to be announced soon.
This monumental deal was executed by Madonna’s longtime manager Guy Oseary at Maverick, Allen Grubman of Grubman Shire Meiselas & Sachs P.C., her business manager Richard Feldstein of NKSFB, and Max Lousada, CEO, Recorded Music, Warner Music Group.
On October 8, Madonna will be releasing her highly anticipated documentary film, MADAME X, exclusively on Paramount+, the streaming service from ViacomCBS, and MTV Entertainment Studios in the U.S., Latin America, Australia, the Nordics, and Canada.
UMG UNVEILS STRATEGIC FRONTLINE LABEL LAUNCHES INTO CHINA
WITH REPUBLIC, POLYGRAM, EMI AND UNIVERSAL MUSIC
Universal Music Greater China (UMGC), a division of Universal Music Group (UMG), today announced a significant expansion of its recorded music operations within China, including the establishment of a multi-label structure, featuring new flagship labels, to intensify its focus on domestic A&R and local-language artists within the region.
As the first major music company to establish multiple frontline label operations across China, UMG’s move marks an acceleration of its local artist investment with the establishment of several distinct label brands – Republic Records China, EMI China, PolyGram Records China and Universal Music China. Each label will operate independently with its own dedicated artist rosters, A&R and specialist marketing teams. Reporting to Sunny Chang, Chairman & CEO, Universal Music Greater China, the labels reinforce UMGC’s commitment to introducing the next wave of Chinese music talent to the world across a variety of genres.
Republic Records China is the first international division of leading U.S. label Republic Records to launch worldwide. Republic, founded and led by brothers Monte and Avery Lipman, is home to some of the world’s most acclaimed and successful international artists, labels and entrepreneurs, including: Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, Drake, The Weeknd, Post Malone, amongst others. The new Republic Records China label will be built with the same blueprint and ethos as its sister label, under the leadership of Tony Wen, who has been appointed Managing Director, Republic Records China, effective immediately. The new label’s first signings will be announced shortly.
Universal Music China (UMC) will be relaunched as a newly shaped label division under the leadership of Garand Wu, Managing Director, Universal Music China, and will represent some of the country’s leading domestic talent including the two biggest selling breakthrough artists of 2020, Li Nong Chen and Sunnee, alongside Guo Ding, Tanya Chua, and Tifa Chen. The label will also continue to represent UMG’s international artist repertoire. In addition, the label will be home to China’s acclaimed classics and jazz division, which includes music and artists from the historic Deutsche Grammophon and Decca labels, alongside leading Chinese classical talent and the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra. UMC is also home to the Magic Muses label, China’s first label dedicated solely to film soundtrack and score.
EMI China’s relaunch will mark the beginning of a new era for the historic label, which has been an integral part of China’s musical legacy for more than a century. The label will be led by Mei Yeh, who will also continue to serve as Managing Director, Universal Music Taiwan. EMI China’s new dedicated A&R and marketing team will be based in Beijing and report to Mei and will focus on developing new talent, alongside an existing artist roster that already includes the likes of aMei, Rainie Yang and Eve Ai.
Polygram Records China will relaunch under the leadership of Duncan Wong, who will also continue to serve as Manager Director, Universal Music Hong Kong. The label will relaunch with a dedicated A&R and marketing team based in Beijing, alongside additional resources in Hong Kong and will leverage the history and success in Cantopop that PolyGram achieved in the region throughout the past half century. The label will focus on developing emerging domestic singer/songwriters, with new acts joining a roster of artists that already includes: Alan Tam, Priscilla Chan, Lowell Lo, Kelly Chen, AGA, Gin Lee and many others.
WMG’S ADA ASIA PARTNERS WITH BARAMEY PRODUCTION
TO TAKE CAMBODIAN MUSIC GLOBAL
Warner Music Group’s ADA Asia has announced a partnership with Baramey Production (“Baramey”), a premium music company that specializes in nurturing original Cambodian talent. This groundbreaking agreement marks the first time a label from Cambodia has signed a deal with a major international record company. ADA Asia will work closely together with Baramey to increase opportunities for Cambodian artists through customized services – such as global music distribution, digital marketing and sync licensing – while expanding the global reach of Khmer music and culture around the world.
Baramey is a pioneer in Cambodia’s music industry. The Cambodian genocide nearly wiped out the country’s music sector and as the country emerged from war and isolation, it was one of the first entertainment companies that dedicated efforts to boost Khmer talent and revive its music scene. Cambodian musicians are now stepping back into the global spotlight. Baramey now has a roster of some of the hottest artists in the country, including popular hip-hop duo Kmeng Khmer; founding member of the country’s “original music movement” Laura Mam; new rising R’n’B singer Sophia Kao, and the country’s top hip-hop star Vann Da.
Laura Mam, artist, Founder & CEO of Baramey said, “It’s a great honor for Baramey to join forces with ADA Asia to distribute our music around the globe. This deal is not only monumental for Cambodia’s music industry, it’ll also be transformational for Cambodian artists. I’m personally humbled and delighted that Baramey will be the first label in Cambodia’s history to partner with a major music company to bring the music of our country to the world.”
Chee Meng Tan, Managing Director, ADA Asia added, “I believe that ADA Asia and Baramey will create a synergy that’ll write a new chapter in Cambodia’s music history. Music transcends borders and exceptional Khmer stars belong on the world stage. This partnership underscores ADA Asia’s unparalleled efforts to be the best-in-class partner to forward-looking labels across the region.”
This deal comes on the back of Baramey’s success earlier this year with Vann Da’s hit single “Time to Rise (feat. Master Kong Nay),” one of the first Khmer songs to cross over internationally. The song is also now the country’s most-streamed music video ever, with nearly 70 million views. Vann Da released his follow-up single “Catch Me If You Can” last week to help open Baramey’s partnership with ADA Asia.
Headquartered in Singapore, ADA Asia was established in September 2020 as part of ADA Worldwide’s global expansion strategy. Baramey Production is the fifth label that ADA Asia has signed since its launch, following deals with leading music companies in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam.
AUSTRALIA’S MUSHROOM GROUP BLOOMS WITH
NEW SIGNING & FILM AND PRODUCTION COMPANY LAUNCH
Australia’s Mushroom Group has announced the launch of Long Play Music Films, which is its new film distribution and production company. The company says that Long Play Films Music will focus on producing and distributing new and compelling music documentaries, as well as prestigious concert films and a variety of biopics.
Warren Costello, Director & Co-Founder, Bloodlines Music, will oversee the new company as part of his broader role at Mushroom Group. Costello says, “I’m really pleased to see Long Play Music Films spring to life with our first theatrical release. What started out as a fun side project is now a reality as Long Play aspires to help tell unique and wonderful music stories from around the globe. We aim to offer screenings of new release music documentaries in cinema comfort and with enhanced sound so that audiences can experience these films as they were meant to be seen and heard.”
The company will launch with its inaugural film Phil Lynott: Songs For While I’m Away, which is directed by Emer Reynolds, and follows the history of the iconic frontman of Thin Lizzy, and includes insights of Lynott’s journey as a rock icon, father, husband, son and friend. The film includes appearances from Adam Clayton (U2), Midge Ure (Ultravox), Huey Lewis, James Hetfield (Metallica) amongst others, and will premiere at the Irish Film Festival next month.
In addition, Mushroom Music Publishing has announced the signing of 19-year-old Australian-based artist and songwriter Budjerah. The budding teen has garnered extensive attention and support on the national Australian youth radio network Triple J, amongst a variety of other platforms.
Budjerah is currently signed with Warner Music Australia and will garner extensive creative and collaboration support throughout Mushroom Music Group’s extensive network of opportunities and access, including co-writes, syncs, marketing and more. Budjerah recently collaborated with the well-known Australian act PNAU for the song titled “Stranger Love,” which has been racking-up support across Australia.
Lemon Tree Music, which is the management firm behind Tones and I, Tash Sultana, Pierce Brothers, Maddy Jane is currently representing Budjerah worldwide.
TUNJI BALOGUN NAMED CHAIRMAN & CEO
AT DEF JAM RECORDINGS
Last week, Universal Music Group (UMG), announced the appointment of celebrated A&R executive Tunji Balogun as Chairman & CEO, Def Jam Recordings, effective January 1, 2022. Balogun comes to Def Jam from RCA Records, where he has served as Executive Vice President of A&R.
Balogun has worked with artists including Bryson Tiller, Childish Gambino, Khalid, Goldlink, and Wizkid among others, over his 17-year career. His appointment marks a return to UMG where he served as an A&R executive at Interscope Records from 2007 to 2015. In his new role, Balogun will be based in Los Angeles and report to Sir Lucian Grainge, Chairman & CEO, UMG.
In making the announcement, Grainge said, “Tunji is part of a new wave of dynamic executives who view today’s artists and music through a unique creative lens. Not only does he bring a deep understanding and respect for the cultural significance of what Def Jam has created over the past four decades, but he also sees the boundless potential of what Def Jam can be to a new generation of artists and fans.”
Jeffrey Harleston, General Counsel & Executive VP of Business & Legal Affairs, UMG has also served as interim Chairman & CEO, Def Jam, will continue to oversee the label until Balogun assumes his new role in January 2022.
GLOBAL NEWS UPDATES…
THE BUCK STOPS HERE: Bucks Music Group has signed hit songwriter Sacha Skarbek to a worldwide administration deal. Skarbek is a two-time Ivor Novello Award winner and a GRAMMY nominated songwriter, producer, film scorer and multi-instrumentalist. He is well-known for writing James Blunt’s hit singles “You’re Beautiful,” “Goodbye My Lover” and “Wisemen,” as well as Miley Cyrus’ “Wrecking Ball” and Adele’s “Cold Shoulder.” He’s worked with countless other artists including: Jason Mraz, Lana Del Rey, Tears For Fears, James Bay, All Saints, Aurora, Sigrid, Backstreet Boys, Gavin James and Jessie Ware. In recent years, Skarbek has focussed more on artist development via his production company White Rope Music and his music publishing company Amadeus, which is administered by Bucks.
TAKING FLIGHT WITH NEW RIGHTS: Abu Dhabi-based independent music company PopArabia has launched ESMAA, a new UAE-based music Rights Management Entity (RME) to facilitate music licensing in the Gulf region. ESMAA will work broadly with both global rights holders and regional businesses to provide Gulf markets with the ability to license music domestically for the first time. ESMAA has concluded agreements to represent the rights of global collecting societies including the U.K.’s PRS For Music and Canada’s SOCAN, representing over 30 million musical works and over 150,000 songwriters, composers, and music publishers respectively through these deals. In addition, ESMAA has signed agreements to license iconic U.K record label Chrysalis Music and Global Master Rights, the neighboring rights company representing the rights of over 300 record labels and more than 2500 performers including Rihanna, Billie Eilish, Imagine Dragons, DJ Snake, Metallica, Migos, David Guetta, among others. ESMAA, which translates to the Arabic word for “Listen,” has also recently become a Client Rights Management Entity of the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers (CISAC).
GETTING MORE THAN TAINTED LOVE: Influential British synth-pop pioneers Soft Cell fronted by the legendary Marc Almond and producer/instrumentalist Dave Ball have signed a new agreement with BMG. The deal commences with the release of the duo’s first new album in 20 years, *Happiness Not Included in 2022, and extends BMG’s fruitful partnership with Marc Almond, having released his previous solo album Chaos and a Dancing Star in January 2020. Soft Cell simultaneously revealed news of a UK tour this November, which will see them preview tracks from *Happiness Not Included alongside their greatest hits, as well as performing their seminal 1981 debut album Non-Stop Erotic Cabaret in full for the first time. With 25 million sales, six UK Top 10 singles, and a BRIT Award to their name, Soft Cell are one of British music’s most visionary bands. The duo first shot to prominence when their singular take on “Tainted Love,” raced up charts all over the world, including a two-week run at Number One in the UK and a Top 10 position in the US.
MAKIN’ MOVES!: Renowned and well-respected U.S. radio programming executive Sharon Dastur has been tapped by Ashely Tabor OBE, President & Founder of the U.K. based multimedia company Global, as their new Sr. Director Programming & Content Advisor. She will continue to be based in New York City and report to James Rea, Director of Broadcasting, Global. Dastur, who has over two decades of experience working in the U.S. audio programming, events and music industry will serve as Global’s U.S. representative with record labels and artist managers and work closely with Global’s U.K.-based artist relations and talent teams. Dastur was previously a part of the programming team at the legendary pop radio station WHTZ “Z100” New York (an iHeart Media property), where she was Sr. VP Programming and was also the co-creator and executive producer of the annual Z100 Jingle Ball even, which drew some of the biggest names in music to the famous Madison Square Garden arena in New York City.
GIVING THE KID MORE INVESTMENT: DistroKid, a leading global distributor of independent music, announced today that New York-based global private equity and venture capital firm Insight Partners has made a substantial investment into the firm, which values the company at $1.3 billion (USD). Currently, more than two million artists at every level use the tools and services that DistroKid provides. The company estimates that it distributes more than a third of all new music globally, paying artists 100% of their royalties by charging a small one-time upfront fee. The investment is expected to fuel the continued development of DistroKid’s burgeoning suite of tools for musicians. Silversmith Capital Partners, a Boston based growth equity firm that led the company’s first outside investment in 2018, will retain a meaningful ownership position going forward and remain on DistroKid’s board.
LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION: Warner Music Entertainment, the film and television division of Warner Music Group (WMG), and Lightbox, the London and Los Angeles based television and film production company have announced a partnership deal to co-produce, co-develop and co-finance non-fiction film and TV projects. The deal will give Lightbox, founded by multi-award-winning producers, Simon Chinn and Jonathan Chinn, access to WMG’s rich catalogue, to create new and exciting content telling the stories of WMG’s current global superstars, songwriters and iconic legacy acts. Lightbox and its principals’ credits in the music space include critically acclaimed features and series for cinemas, global streamers and broadcasters such as Searching For Sugar Man, Man on Wire, TINA, LA 92, Whitney and Hip Hop Uncovered.
WHEELIN’ N DEALIN’ OUTSIDE OF LAS VEGAS: Influential and highly respected Los Angeles-based music attorney Stephen E. Sessa, Co-Chair, Entertainment & Media Industry Group, Reed Smith, LLP and his team have been the centerpiece of some major deals in recent times. Some of the blockbuster deals include the $300 million (USD) acquisition of Downtown Music Publishing copyrights by Concord Music Group back in April this year, facilitating deals and investments for the burgeoning Seeker Music which is led by longtime A&R Worldwide friend Evan Bogart, CEO of the new venture (expect major news from Bogart soon), and Sessa and his team of (seven magnificent) lawyers have wrapped up a number of major catalogue deals for Irving Azoff and several of his artist clients. We’ve also learned that Sessa and his team will shepherd a new supersize investment fund, which will be acquiring key music-related assets. Maybe it’s time for a trip to Vegas!
ALMOST A “DUN” DEAL: Respected Australian, and currently Los Angeles-based manager Marnie Dunstan has taken on representation for a legendary British rock icon; however, we’ve been asked to not unveil the name just yet! Dunstan’s management roster also includes the highly successful songwriter and composer Mr. Hudson (aka Ben Hudson), who has worked with the likes of Kanye West, Jay-Z, Paloma Faith, Alex Clare, Pixie Lott, DJ Snake, John legend to name a few. In addition, the multi-talented Dunstan manages Aijia Grammer (spouse of the multi-Platinum chart-topping Andy Grammer) and has recently taken on management representation for Los Angeles-based model and singer Alex Rzyan. And she ain’t “dun” yet!
GETTING THEIR DEW PROCESS: John Mullen, Head of A&R, Dew Process – a leading independent music and events company located in Australia has signed the Sydney-based (Oasis inspired) indie-pop act PLANET who originally formed back in 2017. Last week, the quartet who have racked-up one million streams independently released its new single, “Resign,” which is produced by GRAMMY Award-winning producer, mixer and engineer Adrian Bushby (U2, Placebo, Muse, New Order, Foo Fighters). Dew Process will represent PLANET for Australasia, whilst Run On Records/Modern Sky, the UK-based record label and multi-faceted music firm will oversee the band’s activities for all other territories across the globe.
JUST DAY TRIPPIN’: Daytripper Music Publishing (Daytripper), the new creative-centric division of CCS Rights Management (CCS), has partnered with renowned KCRW Los Angeles radio host and multi-GRAMMY nominated music supervisor Chris Douridas to help build and develop its talent roster as it expands further into the U.S. market. The match between Douridas and Daytripper will focus on a commitment to discovering and nurturing artists and songwriters at all levels and stages in careers, providing personalized and curated global creative opportunities, while enhancing, capitalizing, and promoting their works. In film and TV circles, Douridas is best known as a two-time GRAMMY-nominated music supervisor for both American Beauty and Shrek 2. His other credits include Heat, As Good as It Gets, Austin Powers, Captain Fantastic, The Addams Family, Flaked, House of Lies, and the upcoming animated features Back to the Outback (Netflix) and Blazing Samurai. At KCRW Douridas has been an early supporter of Maroon 5, Beck, The Cardigans, Meshell Ndegeocello, Elliott Smith, Fiona Apple, Ben Folds, Gillian Welch, Imogen Heap, among many others.
ROCKIN’ EVEN HARDER: River House Artists, in partnership with Sony Music Publishing Nashville have signed rising singer-songwriter Kasey Tyndall to a global publishing deal. Described as a “hard-rock country badass” by Rolling Stone, Kasey Tyndall has shared the stage with renowned musicians like Kane Brown, Kelsea Ballerini, Parmalee, Granger Smith, Whiskey Myers, Joe Diffie, Stryper, Jamey Johnson and many others. Tyndall released her new single “Middle Man,” a few months back and is currently in Nashville writing and recording new music.
IT’S A WINTER WONDERLAND: Imagine Kids+Family and Warner Music Group (WMG) have partnered to co-produce and co-finance Winter Wonderland, inspired by Warner Chappell Music’s – classic holiday song of the same name. The film, which was created and written by filmmaker Cinco Paul (Schmigadoon!, Despicable Me, Minions, Secret Life of Pets), will feature live-action and stop-motion animation with original songs written by Paul. The film will be produced by Imagine Entertainment Chairmen Brian Grazer and Ron Howard and Imagine Kids+Family President Stephanie Sperber, along with WMG’s Charlie Cohen, President, TV & Film, Warner Music Entertainment, Meredith Milton, WMG consultant and producer, as well as Kurt Deutsch, Sr. VP, Theatrical and Catalog, Warner Chappell Music. Winter Wonderland will be the first project to emerge from Imagine and WMG’s multi-year strategic partnership to co-produce and co-finance a slate of music-centered projects across multiple mediums, including film, television, documentary, and other short-form content.
A BROADER GLOBAL A&R ROLE: A&R Worldwide has learned that a very highly successful multinational A&R executive has just re-upped their agreement with a major label. We understand that as part of the newly negotiated deal, the executive will be taking on an even broader global A&R role, as well as establishing a publishing subsidiary, and also expanding upon their artist, producer and songwriter management company. The executive in question landed a number of chart-topping international successes in between negotiations and has a few more about to breakthrough in a big way!
7-UPS THE MUZOOKA: 7digital, (AIM:7DIG) a global company specializing in end-to-end digital music solutions, recently announced a new partnership with Muzooka, one of the world’s largest verified artist asset databases, where content delivered via 7digital’s music-as-a-service platform is now pre-mapped with Muzooka’s pre-approved database of artist images, links, and other media assets, allowing brands to deliver a highly visual experience to their users via a simplified integration. Muzooka provides a central hub to more than two million musical acts and comedians where record labels and managers control their own artist assets across multiple platforms, websites, apps, and smart displays. When an update is made on Muzooka, the new content is instantly distributed across all connected platforms to ensure that fans are always seeing the most accurate and up-to-date photos, bios, and links at HD-quality resolution.
IN A ROUND ABOUT WAY: South African born film composer singer/songwriter, producer and guitarist Trevor Rabin has sold an interest in his music publishing catalogue to Round Hill Music Royalty Fund. The deal includes songs from Rabin’s long career in the legendary rock band Yes, and as a songwriter and composer, which incorporates his 3,528 film cues. As a part of the band Yes, Rabin and the group sold over 20 million full-length albums worldwide, including the legendary track “Owner Of A Lonely Heart,” which was a No.1 single in the U.S. back in 1984. Rabin has worked as a film composer on releases such as Enemy Of The State, National Treasure, Remember The Titans, Bad Boys II and many others. The deal with Round Hill includes the publisher's share and writer's share of Rabin’s copyrights, including administrative control for sync licensing catalogue rights. Earlier this week, Josh Gruss, CEO, Round Hill established the Josh Gruss/Round Hill Music Endowed Scholarship Fund with a $1 million (USD) donation to the U.S. based Berklee College.
FEELING THE TEMPO: Tempo Music, the U.S. based investment firm has acquired a portion of the catalog of well-known twenty one pilots songwriter and frontman Tyler Joseph. The deal includes a portion of hit songs written by Joseph, including the RIAA Diamond certified hits, “Stressed Out,” “Heathens” and “Ride.” The agreement also includes a broader strategic alliance, including additional investments with Joseph and his longtime manager Chris Woltman, Founder, Element1 Music, which is based in Southern California and also represents Half Alive (RCA Records), NF (Caroline), Taylor Janzen (Glassnote Records), as well as a number of producers. Tempo was launched in 2019 and has over $1 billion (USD) in backing from the renowned private equity firm Providence Equity Partners who specialize in media, software, communications, education and service industries in association with Warner Music Group – the label collective behind twenty one pilots. Tempo have also made catalogue acquisitions with artists such as Florida Georgia Line, Wiz Khalifa, songwriters Brett James and Mia Fieldes.
WELCOME ON BOARD: A&R Worldwide has announced the addition of Andrew Boone to its global team, he’ll work out of the company’s Southern California headquarters. Boone takes on the role as Director, A&R Worldwide, and will work closely with the company’s entire senior staff, its strategic international partners, as well as with the firm’s President & Founder, Sat Bisla. Boone’s day-to-day role includes working with the A&R Worldwide team across its vast and intricate engagement within music, media and technology platforms, as well as its online and offline events and experiences, and more. Boone hails from the Midwest of the U.S., where he spent the past few years working across digital marketing and online strategies for numerous clients and service providers.
BECOMING BIGGER FANATICS: Music mogul and entrepreneur JAY-Z and his talent representation firm Roc Nation have invested in the world’s largest sports licensing giant Fanatics, which currently has a valuation of $18 billion (USD). The company, which is run by Michael Rubin, Executive Chairman, Fanatics has ambitious to expanded beyond its apparel, consumer and technologic platforms and incorporate new revenue streams that include gaming, sports betting, multimedia and NFTs. The expanded Fanatics will be overseen by Rubin, who will assume the role of CEO. Doug Mack, CEO of the company’s vertical commerce business, will retain that position whilst taking on the role of Vice Chairman of the expanded firm. With new investments from JAY-Z, Roc Nation, Silver Lake, TWG Sports Media & Entertainment, MLB, Softbank and Insight Partners, Fanatics have been able to triple its enterprise this year, by raising an additional $325 million USD.
CRY ME A RIVER: Riverman Bangkok Management are shedding “tears of joy” with the addition of several new international artist clients to its roster. The firm tells A&R Worldwide that they’ve taken on representation for Belfast, N. Ireland rock trio Dea Matrona; 20-year-old singer/songwriter and guitarist RinRin from Perth, Australia, as well as Alissa Janine, the young singer/songwriter and rapper currently based in Berlin, Germany. Riverman also manage the renowned British alternative rock band Placebo – who have a new album forthcoming, as well as former A&R Worldwide development artist, songwriter and actress Tara Lee.
ACQUIRED BY AN 800 POUND GORILLA: The notorious recordings by legendary comedian singer, actor, and filmmaker Rudy Ray Moore have been sold to the independent comedy label 800 Pound Gorilla Records by his long-time manager Donald H. Randell. The deal was facilitated by SongVest, an online music industry marketplace for buying and selling royalties. The main Dolemite Comedy Catalogue includes over 40 of the late comedian’s most famous recordings, as well as never-before-heard, unreleased masters with outtakes from his comedy shows, instrumental tracks, and more. The albums include: Eat Out More Often, The Dirty Dozen House Party, Greatest Hits, This Ain’t No White Christmas, Dolemite for President, Return of Dolemite-“Superstar”, 50 Years of Cussing, The Beatnik Scene, The Rudy Ray Moore Album: I Can’t Believe I Ate the Whole Thing, Live in Concert, The Player—The Hustler, Sweet Peeter Jeeter, The Turning Point, Close Encounter of the Sex Kind, The Sensuous Black Man among many others.
GOING TO TOWN: Townsend Music, an online music store has announced that it’s expanding its services by signing select artists, labels and other rights-holders to bring a range of products from conception to market including studio albums, live albums, merchandise and coffee table books. Under the banner of D2C Plus, Townsend Music will provide a wide range of services from finance, creative development, product curation, campaign management, design, manufacturing, digital to physical marketing. The new service level comes with a number of recent signing to D2C Plus including Sea Power (formerly British Sea Power), Feeder, Kyle Falconer, Zuzu, The Byson Family, The Sherlocks and John Bramwell, along with Hacienda Records and Alan McGee’s It’s Creation Baby. The company has also recently published its first ever coffee table book, with So Young: Suede 1991 – 1993.
MOVING ON UP: Kerry Hickey has been promoted to a new role as Sr. Vice President, Film & Television Licensing, Columbia Records as reported in Variety last week. In her newly elevated role, Hickey will continue to oversee both creative and clearance of syncs, allowing the label to robustly green light opportunities for artists across a plethora of sync touch points, as well as proactively seek new avenues to exploit the company’s vast repertoire. Hickey who joined Columbia Records back in 2018, will continue to work with her current licensing team and will report to Ron Perry, Chairman & CEO, Columbia Records and Jenifer Mallory, General Manager, Columbia Records.
SOUNDING OFF WITH NEW PROMOTIONS: SoundExchange has announced the appointment of Stephanie Werner to VP, Brand Marketing & Industry Engagement. Additionally, industry veteran Barry LeVine is named VP, Marketing & Entertainment Partnerships. Both will form part of the company’s newly expanded corporate affairs group based in New York and will report to Esther-Mireya Tejeda, Chief Marketing & Communications Officer. As part of the company’s expanded capabilities, Tejeda is introducing Marketing and Entertainment Partnerships as a new discipline to be headed by LeVine. LeVine will transition from his current post as VP, Industry Relations into his new role building strategic brand relationships and fostering alliances that strengthen SoundExchange’s suite of offerings for creators, and that advance SoundExchange brand initiatives and impact across tech, music, and entertainment.
A&R WORLDWIDE — “EXPOSED”
Each week, A&R Worldwide’s newsletter goes back in time with memorable and defining moments in our 20+ year history. However, we’d also like to share your key and prolific images that have yet to be “exposed.” Click HERE to submit your photo to our team for potential exposure!
AMONGST MUSIC INDUSTRY LEGENDS: Enjoying a great conversation and dining experience at an A&R Worldwide dinner event in London, England are (L-R) Barry Dickins (Co-Founder, ITB), Lucy Dickins (Co-Head Music, WME), Harvey Goldsmith CBE (Founder, Harvey Goldsmith Presents), Sat Bisla (President & Founder, A&R Worldwide) and Professor Jonathan Shalit OBE (Chairman, InterTalent Rights Group).
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Michael Taylor, Barry Dickins, Anne Litt, Martin Elbourne, Kaylin Frank, Rudy Chung, Reen Nalli, Brandon Young, Niko Nordström, Joey Arbagey, Michelle Jubelirer, Damon Forbes, Wendy Goldstein, Tak Furuichi, Atul Churamani and John Watson.
JACKASS OF THE WEEK
Have you ever sent a text message you regretted, clicked on the wrong link, posted an inappropriate message or image on social media, accidentally replied “send all” on an E-mail, or made a total ass of yourself? Yes, we’ve all had a jackass moment at one time or another in our lives. News can be informative, sometimes misleading and at times make no sense at all. Click HERE for a menu of miscues and live TV fails from around the world, which are more newsworthy than some of their live on-air reporting.
A&R WORLDWIDE’S "ARTIST OF THE WEEK"– TEE DEE DEES
From an unlikely part of the world comes an exhilarating indie synth-pop project called Tee Dee Dees. Tel-Aviv-born and raised Ori Mark aka Tee Dee Dees teams up with the UK-Israeli drummer Tomer Z of the band Blackfield on the new single “War.” The artist has released two albums in Hebrew, performed on all of the major stages in Tel-Aviv, and is setting up the release of his album 1^2=1 through Alaska Music in 2022. The song's bright synths and 80s style basslines are a perfect match for Tee Dee Dees' silky and inescapable vocals. Musically, he’s been compared to well-known acts such as Interpol, Placebo and Depeche Mode and has been inspired by Django Django and MGMT. Listen to “War” HERE and contact The Playground PR at email@example.com for additional information, or inquiries on Tee Dee Dees.
A&R WORLDWIDE’S "VIDEO OF THE WEEK" – JAMES DEACON
One of the biggest rising South African music stars is James Deacon. His music has earned online support and praise from such tastemaker sites as Complex, Earmilk, CLASH and more. He’s also garnered global radio support, and his single “Son Of Apollo” was featured in the eight week movie promo campaign for HBO in the U.S. After being nominated for a South African Music Award (SAMA) for “Best Alternative Album,” Deacon returns with his latest single, “For You” through Bad Future Records (Tatum, Tyler Page, Hunter As A Horse). The song uncovers the ambivalence of addiction and bad habits. According to Deacon, the song is about being addicted to nicotine as he had a love/hate relationship with cigarettes and finally managed to quit and wrote about it. He knows that fellow-smokers will get it and non-smokers will think it’s about a relationship and hopes that both parties will put their difference aside and enjoy the song equally. Deacon created the video for the new track entirely filmed on an iPhone, where he collaborated with creative visionary Kyle Kemink. Watch the “For You” video HERE and contact Peter Galanakis at firstname.lastname@example.org and Paul Gala at email@example.com as Deacon is available for brand, sync and co-writing opportunities.
PASSPORT APPROVED™ PLAYLIST – 8/15/2021
“PASSPORT APPROVED” PLAYLIST FOR Sunday, August 15th, 2021: The weekly import show. Heard on more than 50 radio stations on six continents weekly including: Flux FM Berlin, Germany; JioSaavn (worldwide); Radio Doble Nueve, Lima, Peru; WZRH–FM New Orleans, LA; KWSS “93.9FM” Phoenix, AZ; KRML “102.1FM” Carmel, CA; KFRR “New Rock 104.1FM” Fresno, CA; Radio 1, Mumbai, India; WCNR Charlottesville, VA; KIWR “The River” Council Bluffs, IA; 2XM Ireland (national radio); 96.2 ZFM The Netherlands; WAPS–FM “The Summit.FM” Akron–Canton, OH; WKTL–FM Youngstown, OH; 105.5FM XFM Nairobi, Kenya; PUK–FM Johannesburg, South Africa; Rock 96.5FM Zambia; 897 FM Bratislava, Slovakia; WITH “90.1FM” Ithaca, NY; UCFM 87.8FM Australian Capital Territory, Australia; WRUR 88.5FM Rochester, NY; WCRU–FM Hamilton, NY; KZND Anchorage, AK; KQCJ Quad Cities, IL; Allgauhit–FM Bavaria Germany; Indie Xfm Los Angeles and on The Independent FM (iHeartRadio) in the United States, as well as many others internationally.
Listen to this two hour show by clicking HERE:
PAPER IDOL – “Seen This All Before” (Unsigned, N. America)
FINN ASKEW – “Paranoia” (Polydor, UK)
SLIDE – “Hello Spirit” (Unsigned, Sweden)
PARIS YOUTH FOUNDATION – “Tired of Loving You’” (Unsigned, UK)
REST FOR THE WICKED – “Bones” (EMI, Australia)
OSCAR LANG – “21st Century Hobby” (Dirty Hit, UK)
IAMJJ – “Different Kind Of Blues” Feat. BAKER GRACE (Mermaid Records, Denmark)
DUDE SAFARI – “Big Worse” (Unsigned, UK)
SAHARA BECK – “Crave Me” (Unsigned, Australia)
LEONIDEN – “Dice” (Euphorie/UMG, Germany)
GEORGE COSBY – “Day In, Day Out” (Sony Music, UK)
LOTTERY WINNERS – “Times Are Changing” (Modern Sky, UK)
HOLYOAK – “Sit Tight” (Unsigned, Germany)
FRIEDBERG – “Yeah” (Marathon Artists, UK)
WAITING FOR SMITH – “Hopelessness of Love” (Four One Seven Records, UK)
THE PALE WHITE – “That Dress” (Unsigned, UK)
TRIBE FRIDAY – “Drugs X Boys X Drugs” (Unsigned, Sweden)
MUKS – “Falling’” (Unsigned, India)
INHALER – “It Won’t Always Be Like This” (Polydor/UMG, Ireland)
STEREOTIDE – “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” (Unsigned, Germany)
WET LEG – “Chaise Lounge” (Domino, UK)
ADÉLAIDE – “Paintings In The Sky” (Unsigned, France)
VISTAS – “Dayglow” (Unsigned, UK)
FRISKA VILJOR – “My Own Satan” (Unsigned, Sweden)
ALLDAY – “Stolen Cars” (Teamtrick, Australia)
TIM SCHOU – “Mad Love” Feat. SOWFY (Iceberg Records, Denmark)
BILK – “Bad News’” (Scruff Of The Neck Records, UK)
EMMI KING – “Time Flies” (Unsigned, Germany)
PADDY ECHO – “Valley Kids” (Unsigned, New Zealand)
LUNA BAY – “Blue” (Unsigned, UK)
DOTAN – “Mercy” (7 Layer, Holland)
DED RABBIT – “All Fired Up” (Unsigned, Scotland)
DANNY BALDURSSON – “Tears” (Unsigned, Faroe Islands)
(Check out the Passport Approved Radio “Featured Artists” on the daily profile exclusively on AllAccess.com including Spacey Jane, Inhaler, Uno Mas, Yep May Yep and Cassia)