Music Industry Moves: Republic Records Ups Chris Blackwell to Executive VP

Republic Records has announced the promotion of Chris Blackwell to EVP of A&R and Content Strategy, as announced today by label president Wendy Goldstein.

According to the announcement, in this new role, Blackwell will continue to shepherd the creation and development of content for the entire Republic Records roster. Additionally, he will work with new artists to identify and maximize content opportunities at the onset of their careers.
Blackwell played a major role in Coi Leray’s rise by producing her viral “Cooking With Coi Leray,” and also collaborated with Ka$hdami, Lil Wayne, Benee and Kash Doll on upcoming programming. He also worked with Federal Films on several projects, including the documentary “Contact High: A Visual History of Hip Hop” based on Vicki Tobak’s book of the same name and directed by Oscar-winning “Summer of Soul” co-producer Joseph Patel.

Goldstein commented, “Chris is a 360-degree creative thinker and strategist. He’s made incredible inroads for our artists to reach critical mass by venturing off the beaten path and treading new territory. He’s a proven visionary whose dynamic personality will be key to our expansion.”

Blackwell added, “I refer to what I do as A&R-plus. More than ever, artists are multi-hyphenates, content creators, and brand builders. I’m honored to be their liaison when it comes to creative projects. Monte and Avery have built the perfect space for entrepreneurs to flourish.”

+ Reservoir Media has expanded its worldwide publishing deal with Dan Nakamura, professionally known as Dan the Automator, a Grammy-nominated producer and songwriter who produced Gorillaz’s debut album and co-helmed the Dr. Octagon and Handsome Boy Modeling School projects (with Kool Keith and Prince Paul, respectively), and worked extensively with DJ Shadow and Del the Funky Homosapien; he also has worked extensively as a film and television composer. The new deal includes Nakamura’s catalog and future works expanding the scope of an existing publishing relationship between Reservoir and Nakamura, first established in 2012. Handsome Boy Modeling School is also expected to new music later this year.

Reservoir EVP of A&R Faith Newman said, “From his work as a hip-hop producer and artist to his recent film and TV compositions, Dan has consistently demonstrated the breadth of his talent. Throughout his decades-spanning career, Dan has made an indelible mark across the music industry, and we are looking forward to working on his music.”

+ Resident Advisor (RA), the electronic music platform and magazine, has created a new governance board as part of a broader company restructure and recruitment drive. According to the announcement, the restructure seeks to improve diversity and representation at senior levels within RA while introducing a direct community stewardship to RA for the first time.
The initial composition of the board comprises producer-DJ Tony Nwachukwu, DJ-consultant Lauren Goshinski, Outer director Carin Abdulá and RA head of the community Amy Van Baaren. RA founders Nick Sabine and Paul Clement move from co-CEOs to members of the new board, while former COO David Selby assumes the CEO role.

+ UnitedMasters, the “record label in your pocket” for independent artists, has announced the release of Beat Exchange, a curated marketplace to buy and sell beats. The Beat Exchange connects producers with UnitedMasters’ 1.5 million independent artists while providing them with tools to upload and manage a personal beats storefront.

UnitedMasters artists now have access to buy or license beats from both emerging and established producers like Hit-Boy (Nas, Drake, Beyoncé), Turbo (Gunna, Travis Scott, Lil Baby), Sham “Sak Pase” Joseph (Kodak Black, Rihanna , Saint Jhn), Kato on the Track and David Morse (Lil Durk’s song “Headtaps”).

According to the announcement, Beat Exchange will provide participating producers with:
• Ownership: Option to keep 100% of beat sales and enjoy exclusive benefits by joining UnitedMasters Select program, or keep 90% of sales with no up-front fee
• Licensing: A choice of three licensing templates – Non-Exclusive, Exclusive, or Buyout – and the ability to customize sale needs including price and length of term
• Brands + Sync: Exclusive opportunities to monetize or license your beats with the world’s biggest brands like ESPN and the NBA with additional opportunities to get your beats featured in television shows, movies, video games, and more
• Curated Discovery: Designed to simplify browsing, beats are artfully curated by specific sounds (genre, mood, instrument, etc.) and editorial playlists will drive discovery

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