CONCORD ACQUIRES HITCO
Concord has acquired assets from Hitco Entertainment, which is said to include its overall sound recording catalog and certain new release. The deal is said to have limited exclusions with regards to certain aspects of the Hitco Entertainment catalog.
Hitco Entertainment was launched back in January of 2018 and is based in Los Angeles with offices in New York City and Atlanta, and primarily focuses on hip-hop and pop repertoire. The label was co-founded by L.A. Reid former Chairman & CEO, Epic Records and Charles Goldstuck, former President & COO, Bertelsmann Music Group (BMG).
Hitco’s repertoire includes SAINt JHN, Yella Beezy, Dinah Jane (band member of Fifth Harmony), Outkast’s Big Boi and others.
The acquisition of assets from Hitco Entertainment follows Concord’s recent purchase of the Australasian family-owned music publisher Native Tongue, as well as its recent decision to turn down an acquisition offer for itself valued at an estimated $5 billion (USD).
UNIVERSAL MUSIC PUBLISHING GROUP APPOINTS
JENNIFER KNOEPFLE AS EVP & CO-HEAD OF US A&R
Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG) has announced the appointment of publishing executive Jennifer Knoepfle to the role of Executive Vice President and Co-Head of US A&R, effective immediately. Based in Los Angeles, Knoepfle will report to Jody Gerson, Chairman & CEO, UMPG.
In her role as Executive VP & Co-Head of US A&R, Knoepfle will work alongside UMPG’s Co-Head of US A&R, EVP and Head of Global Creative Group David Gray and team to foster the company’s culture of creative collaboration, nurturing the next generation of both songwriting and A&R talent and reinforcing UMPG’s position as a market leader in talent development.
Knoepfle will work with UMPG’s songwriters, artists, and producers; co-lead the A&R team in identifying, signing, and developing early rising talent; support legacy talent by providing opportunities to strengthen their careers; and further grow the company’s unparalleled catalog of hits.
CHUCK D SELLS CATALOG TO REACH MUSIC
Reach Music Publishing has acquired a 50% copyright ownership interest together with 100% of the writer's share, including global administration rights, in the classic song catalog of Chuck D, the founding member and the chief songwriter of Public Enemy.
The acquisition includes Chuck D’s songwriting contributions to Public Enemy albums covering a 25-year span from 1987 through 2012; beginning with Public Enemy's 1987 debut album Yo! Bum Rush the Show and covering such additional groundbreaking albums as It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back, Fear of a Black Planet, and Apocalypse 91...The Enemy Strikes Black.
Chuck D stated, “Mike Closter and everyone at Reach have been handling my song catalog for well over 20 years, and doing this deal was the right timing for a forward and logical evolution of our business together in an ever-changing industry. Reach has always been ahead of the curve on establishing respect for the HipHop genre songwriting and publishing-wise, and they will continue taking care of my works.”
KATY PERRY, JESSIE J, THE TEMPER TRAP & MANY MORE
WHO’S NEXT TO LAUNCH OR GET SIGNED FROM MUSEXPO
Since it’s launch back in 2005, MUSEXPO has been a launching pad for artists into the US and global markets – acting as a platform for key decision-makers, influencers, A&Rs, publishers, music supervisors, brands, booking agents, radio/digital and streaming platforms to unearth emerging talent, as well as leading to direct signings including worldwide deals. MUSEXPO returns in 2023 with its full and robust showcasing platform with the focus of securing strategic deals for the participating acts.
Jason Flom, President, Lava Records says, “I’ve been attending and participating in MUSEXPO for many years and I love it! MUSEXPO showcases that I did very early in their careers brought Katy Perry and Jessie J to the attention of key global tastemakers and helped to set the stage for their respective launches.”
Some of the acts who have benefitted from showcasing at MUSEXPO and garnered a springboard into the US and global markets, or getting signed to labels, synch licensing deals and/or publishing agreements as a result of the event include the likes of Katy Perry, Frank Turner, Jessie J, The Temper Trap, LMFAO, Sheppard, Avalanche City, Gavin James, Forest Blakk, Robyn, Erik Hassle, Ida Maria, Jeremy Loops, Lime Cordiale to name just a few.
MUSEXPO is currently accepting artist showcase submissions. More information is available HERE, or contact firstname.lastname@example.org for additional details.
Click HERE for the Katy Perry showcase at MUSEXPO 2008, which played a key part in opening some very important early doors for her in her career into the US, and global markets.
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!
THE EARLY FLIGHT BEFORE CONCORD: Back in early 2003, A&R Worldwide Founder Sat Bisla gave his then business partner Steve Smith (Chairman, Concord Music Group) a business plan and concept to set-up a new global music publishing company, and advised Smith on the value of copyrights and how to build a sustainable new business in that arena. A year later, Bisla convinced Smith to hire his friend Jake Wisely who Bisla trusted as a knowledgeable and capable executive to run the day to day operations of their new publishing venture. The publishing company, which was a part of the A&R Worldwide vision created by Bisla was taken on its seperate path, and eventually acquired independent music publisher Bicylce Music Publishing in 2004. The company over the course of time started to evolve, and eventually tapped into significant VC funding from Wood Creek Capital in 2005 to acquire broader catalogs and has since evolved into what today is Concord Music Group.
Pictured (L-R) at an A&R Worldwide dinner back in 2003 are Jeremy Gimbel (former representative New Zealand Trade & Development), Marcus (friend), Sat Bisla (President & Founder, A&R Worldwide), Steve Smith (Chairman, Concord Music Group) and UK artist Samiya.
GLOBAL NEWS UPDATES…
PULSE MUSIC GROUP NAMES NEW VP A&R: Steven Gringer has been promoted to Vice President, A&R at Pulse Music Group. Moving up from his previous role as Sr. Creative Director, Gringer will now be responsible for signing and developing the publisher’s roster of songwriters and producers and helping to oversee international creative affairs. He is based in Los Angeles and reports to Pulse Music Group President, Ashley Calhoun. Gringer joined pulse in 2014 as an A&R coordinator and has since contributed significantly to the development of the company’s Latin, pop, hip-hop, and international roster.
DOMINQUE SANDERS INKS GLOBAL PUBLISHING DEAL: Prescription Songs’ Chris Martignago and Eddie Fourcell along with Linear Management’s Kelle Musgrave-Glanzbergh have announced the signing of Linear client Dominique Sanders to a worldwide publishing deal with the independent publishing company. Dominque Sanders is a producer and composer that is known for his collaborations with artists including Tech9, Nipsey Hussle, The Game, Jay Price, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Jeremih, and more. Sanders also produced and co-wrote “Run It Down” by Jay Prince and Chance The Rapper’s latest single “Wraith” ft. Vic Mensa and Smoko Ono.
FEELING THE “LOVE” AT DOWNTOWN: Downtown Music Holdings (Downtown), has named Love H. Whelchel as its first Chief People Officer at the company. In his new role, Whelchel will work closely with the company’s leadership on talent acquisition, engagement, training and development, employee experience, infrastructure and organizational design for the company’s 600+ employees around the world. “Throughout his impressive career, Love has guided the human resources function for a wide range of diverse companies,” said Andrew Bergman, CEO of Downtown Music Holdings. For more than two decades, Whelchel has served as a global people consultant in the technology, marketing communications, and fashion industries. He headed the human resources departments for agencies within WPP, IPG and Publicis. He was also the Chief Human Resources Officer for Sean “Puffy” Combs’ companies Combs Enterprises and Bad Boy Worldwide. He also was a principal in the mobile app company BINKABLE, which empowered emerging creative talent to showcase their work and connect directly with top brands and creative agencies. Whelchel successfully exited BINKABLE in 2019.
AYRA STARR – SPOTIFY’S RADAR GLOBAL ARTIST: Spotify has announced that Ayra Starr is its latest Radar Global artist. The program originally launched in 2020 with the purpose of providing developing artists with backing support, marketing, and editorial placements on Spotify. Previously, Pink Pantress, Griff, Beabadoobee, and The Kid Laroi have all been Radar Global artists. Starr has 2.5 million monthly Spotify listeners and will now be featured on the Radar Global playlist in addition to releasing special content on the platform including social content and a mini documentary. Ayra Starr is signed to Marvin Records in Nigeria and is set to release the deluxe edition of her album 19 & Dangerous next month.
A NEW ACQUISITION: Manage Ad Music (MAM) a company specializing in the collection of music royalties founded by Nan Wilson in 2000, has been acquired by BMAT Music Innovators, a global music technology company specialized in connecting the industry to amplify the value of music to now become known as MAM BMAT. The announcement was made today by Nan Wilson, President of MAM BMAT and by Pedro Cano, one of the CEOs of BMAT. In related news, BMAT has just released a data-driven music usage TV report in collaboration with the Production Music Association. The report has determined that 46% of the music played on broadcast and cable TV across the US is production music. Commercial music only accounts for 7% of total usage. The report can be accessed HERE.
NEW PRESIDENT NAMED AT WMG BENELUX: Niels Walboomers has been named President, Records and Publishing, Benelux at Warner Music Group. Prior to this appointment, Walboomers was Benelux Managing Director at Sony Music Publishing for the past 12 years. In his new role, which will go into effect on November 1st, Walboomers will oversee both Warner Music Benelux and Warner Chappel Music Benelux and will report jointly to Co-chair & CEO of Warner Chappell Music, Guy Moot, and President, International, Warner Recorded Music, Simon Robson.
KOBALT SIGNS CAT BURNS: Kobalt has announced the signing of 22-year-old singer and songwriter Cat Burns to a worldwide publishing administration agreement. The agreement includes global synch and creative services for her catalog and future songs. Burns reins from Streatham in the UK, and in only three months, she surpassed half a million followers on TikTok by posting a mix of covers and original music. Now, Burns is sitting at 1.3 million TikTok followers and 5.3 million monthly Spotify listeners.
VOICE OF BEIRUT ACQUIRED: Reservoir Media in conjunction with PopArabia, a music publisher and independent music company in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), has announced the acquisition of Lebanese label and music publisher, Voice of Beirut. This acquisition builds on Reservoir’s emerging markets strategy, further diversifying the Company’s music rights in the fast-growing MENA region. Voice of Beirut was founded in 1980 and has grown to include sound recording and publishing rights to nearly 3,000 songs that are a cross section of Lebanese pop from the 1980s through to the mid-90s.
CHRIS STAPLETON RENEWS DEAL WITH WCM: Singer, songwriter, guitarist and producer Chris Stapleton, has renewed his global publishing deal with Warner Chappell Music (WCM). Throughout his career, Stapleton has amassed 10 RIAA-certified platinum singles, eight GRAMMY awards, 14 CMA awards, eight ACM awards, and billions of streams. He was just nominated for five CMA awards and, earlier this year, took home all three of his nominations at the 64th Annual GRAMMY awards, winning “Best Country Album” for Starting Over, “Best Country Song” for “Cold,” and “Best Country Solo Performance” for “You Should Probably Leave” – which hit No.1 on Billboard’s Country Airplay and Hot Country Songs charts.
EXTENDING TERMS WITH BMG: Montez, one of Germany's most renowned songwriters, has extended his long-standing collaboration with BMG and We Publish Music. In addition to his successful solo career, the Bielefeld native has contributed to ten No.1 singles and six No.1 albums in recent years and has worked with artists such as Badmómzjay, Pietro Lombardi, Katja Krasavice, Capital Bra, Elif, Wincent Weiss, Helene Fischer, Nico Santos and many more. In 2021, Montez was awarded the German Music Author Prize in the category Most Successful Work of 2021 for “Ohne Dich.” The song spent 28 weeks on the Official German Singles Chart, including four weeks at No.1, and garnered over 111 million streams. His breakthrough came with his No.1 single “Auf und Ab” (2021), which generated over 120 million streams on Spotify alone, and was certified Platinum. The song has now spent 57 uninterrupted weeks in the Official German Singles Charts.
DEF JAM NAMES NEW STREAMING SR. VP: Def Jam Recordings has named Mike Hamilton as its new Sr. Vice President, Streaming & Commerce. Hamilton’s appointment was unveiled last week by Tunji Balogun, Chairman & CEO, Def Jam Recordings and LaTrice Burnette, Executive VP Def Jam & President, 4th & Broadway. Hamilton comes to Def Jam after spending the past three years at Epic Records in the role of Sr. Director, Commerce where he led campaigns and created strategies for artists including DJ Khaled, Future, 21 Savage, Jennifer Hudson, Rick Ross, Travis Scott and others. Hamilton started his career at Atlantic Records where he worked his way up to the role of Senior Manager, Streaming & Sales. Whilst at Atlantic he oversaw strategies for GRAMMY-nominated acts Cardi B, Janelle Monáe, Nipsey Hussle, Lil Uzi Vert, and others.
VENICE MUSIC UNVEILS DISTRIBUTION SERVICES: Venice Music is expanding its global audience exposure for its distribution platform through a range of subscription services. Venice Music was founded in 2021 by Troy Carter and Suzy Ryoo with the purpose of creating an ecosystem for independent musicians, labels, and managers to have access to all-in-one distribution, sync opportunities, global marketing, Web3 advisory, playlisting and more. Previously, the platform was exclusively accessible by invite or by purchasing a membership pass. Now, Venice will expand its global community by offering three different subscription options with variety in pricing and inclusions. To launch the subscription-based membership, Venice Music will hold seven days of digital programming beginning September 12, 2022, consisting of live discussions with music industry professionals.
IMPALA & AUDIOSALAD IN EUROPE-WIDE DEAL: IMPALA and US-based tech company, AudioSalad have announced a partnership. This collaboration is a part of the Friends of IMPALA program for strategic business in the music sector. Audiosalad’s services allow independent labels, distributors, and rightsholders access to technology that will streamline their digital operations and implement their preferred licensing strategy. The collaboration between IMPALA and Audiosalad will be beneficial for both parties and will allow IMPALA to benefit from Audiosalad’s vast knowledge of the digital world. Audiosalad recently expanded into Europe and opened an office in London.
UMG’S GREEN TEAM: The Universal Music Group US Green Team (UMG Green Team), an initiative of Universal Music Group’s All Together Now Foundation, has launched a global community garden initiative. The UMG Green Team will work with Goodr and the Captain Planet Foundation to build community gardens that help bring hands-on experiential learning opportunities to students across the US. The first garden, known as “The Universal Music Enterprises (UMe) Community Learning Garden”, was unveiled recently at the 49th Street Elementary School in Los Angeles. The community gardens will serve as a space for students to engage in inquiry-driven, project-based learning across academic subjects, while also deepening their understanding of how natural systems work. The partnership with the UMG Green Team, Goodr and the Captain Planet will provide schools with the essential tools to establish and support garden-based learning programs such as garden materials and supplies, educator resources, and a mobile cooking kit. Read more HERE.
PIXELYNX TAPS NEW STRATEGIC PARTNER: PIXELYNX, the music metaverse gaming platform founded by electronic musicians and technology visionaries Joel Zimmerman aka deadmau5 and Richie Hawtin aka Plastikman, have announced that producer and visual effects pioneer Ed Ulbrich has signed on as a strategic partner and advisor to the company. Ulbrich produced the epic sci-fi film, Ender’s Game, starring Harrison Ford, Viola Davis and Sir Ben Kingsley and produced the Tupac Shakur hologram with Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg as part of their Coachella Music Festival performances. He also produced the visual effects for Warner Bros’ blockbuster Suicide Squad. Ulbrich has consulted on strategy and business development spanning creative development, real-time animation, visual effects, virtual production, and XR/AR/VR; across film, television, music, Web3, and the metaverse.
UNIVERSAL MUSIC GROUP LAUNCHES VMG: Last week, Universal Music Group announced the launch of the Virgin Music Group (VMG) a new global division that will unify UMG’s industry-leading artist services businesses under the leadership of music entrepreneurs and mtheory founders JT Myers and Nat Pastor as Co-CEOs, effective immediately. In their new role, Myers and Pastor will lead the expansion of UMG’s independent music capabilities across all of its business units and regions, reporting to UMG Chairman and CEO Sir Lucian Grainge. The new division will include Virgin Music Label & Artist Services, Ingrooves Music Group, and mtheory Artist Partnerships. Effective immediately, all Virgin Music Label and Artist Services regional hubs will become part of the Virgin Music Group.
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Jason Ellis, John Dexter, David Vodicka, Jason Miller, Sonia Diwan, Satya Hinduja, Panos Panay, David Gresham, Ian Montone, Nick Shymansky, Daniella Cabargas, Laura Lukanz, Alex Luke, and Ben Cooper.
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. Watching the news live can be realistic, interesting, informative and sometimes quite risky, as you never know what’s going to happen live on-air! Click HERE to watch some hilarious and memorable moments caught live on TV.
A&R WORLDWIDE’S "ARTIST OF THE WEEK" – DONKEY KID
Last year 19-year-old Jurek Stricker aka Donkey Kid released four singles and earned praise from international magazines, blogs and fans, while garnering support from radio stations. His single “Deep Blue” made the cover of Spotify’s Best of Indie Brandneu 2021 list gained massive traction at British college radio. His first UK shows saw him supporting Cassia, following a summer tour with Von Wegen Lisbeth, Rikas, Drangsal and a performance at the Montreux Jazz Festival. This summer, he released his musical coming-of age-story, the debut EP Distant Shouts (Donkey Dub Records), featuring the single “Digging Holes.” Musically inspired by the likes of Talking Heads, Tame Impala and King Krule, the rising German artist creates his own extravagant soundscapes, ranging from a mixture of modern Western and beautiful psychedelic loops. Donkey Kid will be part of the “Wunderkinder - German Music Talent” export program at the Reeperbahn Festival, performing two shows: Thursday at Häkken and Friday at Bahnhof Pauli. Discover “Digging Holes” HERE and contact Hannes Kuhr at email@example.com for additional information and available opportunities with Donkey Kid.
A&R WORLDWIDE’S "VIDEO OF THE WEEK" – TEENAGE DADS
HERE. Contact Andrew Stone at firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information and any available opportunities with Teenage Dads.
PASSPORT APPROVED™ PLAYLIST – 9/18/2022
“PASSPORT APPROVED” PLAYLIST FOR Sunday, September 18th, 2022: The weekly import show. Heard on more than 50 radio stations on six continents weekly including: Flux FM Berlin, Germany; NINETYSIX Radio (Indonesia); JioSaavn (India); Radio Doble Nueve, Lima, Peru; WZRH–FM New Orleans, LA; KWSS “93.9FM” Phoenix, AZ; KRML “102.1FM” Carmel, CA; KFRR “New Rock 104.1FM” Fresno, CA; Radio 1, Mumbai, India; WCNR Charlottesville, VA; KIWR “The River” Council Bluffs, IA; 2XM Ireland (national radio); 96.2 ZFM The Netherlands; WAPS–FM “The Summit.FM” Akron–Canton, OH; WKTL–FM Youngstown, OH; 105.5FM XFM Nairobi, Kenya; PUK–FM Johannesburg, South Africa; Rock 96.5FM Zambia; 897 FM Bratislava, Slovakia; WITH “90.1FM” Ithaca, NY; UCFM 87.8FM Australian Capital Territory, Australia; WRUR 88.5FM Rochester, NY; WCRU–FM Hamilton, NY; KZND Anchorage, AK; KQCJ Quad Cities, IL; Allgauhit–FM Bavaria Germany; Indie Xfm Los Angeles and on The Independent FM (iHeartRadio) in the United States, as well as many others internationally.
Listen to this two hour show by clicking HERE:
THE AMAZONS – “How Will I Know?” (Fiction/UMG, UK) KAMRAD – “I Believe” (Sony Music, Germany) THE VELVET HANDS – “I Wanna Be There” (Jam X Recordings, UK) GIANT ROOKS – “Watershed” (Universal Music, Germany) APECS – “Red Moon” (Unsigned, UK) TRIBE FRIDAY – “Dead” (Unsigned, Sweden) OSCAR LANG – “I’ve Never Been To LA” (Dirty Hit, UK) MIA RODRIGUEZ – “Shut Up” (City Pop/WMG, Australia) RED RUM CLUB – “Vanilla” (Modern Sky, UK) TOVE STYRKE – “Bruises” (Sony Music, Sweden) MASI MASI – “The Good Stuff” (Shabby Road, UK) PALE WAVES – “Jealousy” (Dirty Hit, UK) ADELAIDE – “Euphorie” (Unsigned, France) THE CURIOUS – “Begin” (Unsigned, UK) LADY SLOTH – “Fences” (Trailing Twelve, N. America) RHETT REPKO – “Won’t Cry” (Unsigned, N. America) BARBERA MARI – “Hunter” (Unsigned, Czech Republic) CROCODYLUS – “You” (Sureshaker, Australia) SEA GIRLS – “DNA” (Polydor, UK) LAUREN WALLER – “Lift You Up” (Unsigned, N. America) DEAF HAVANA – “Going Clear” (SO Recordings, UK) CASSIA – “Right There” (BMG, Australia) JUPITER FLYNN – “Misunderstanding” (Wintrup, Germany) REST FOR THE WICKED – “Impulse” (EMI/UMG, Australia) CMON CMON – “The Summers We Missed” (Republic Of Music, UK) STEREOTIDE – “Touch The Sky” (Unsigned, Germany) JYE – “Lemon Lime” (Unsigned, Australia) CRAWLERS – “I Didn’t Know How To Say” (Polydor, UK) LIME CORDIALE – “Facts Of Life” (Chugg Music, Australia) DOLORES FOREVER – “Rothko” (Sweat Music, Sweden) TRASHED – “Memories” (Unsigned, UK) REBECCA EPICSON – “Go Figure Why” (Unsigned, Germany) MATTY GREG – “As It Was” (Unsigned, N. America) WAITING FOR SMITH – “Run” (417 Records, UK)