Music Industry Moves: Tokischa Inks Publishing Deal With Warner Chappell Music

Dominican rapper and songwriter Tokischa has inked her first global publishing deal with Warner Chappell. This follows the news of Tokischa’s new label, SOL, with Warner Music Latina, and the release of her new single, “Sol.”

Tokischa has collaborated with Latin music champions from J Balvin, Rosalía and Ozuna, to icons like Madonna. This year, she released “Ride or Die, Pt. 2” with Sevdaliza and WCM’s Villano Antillano and “Chulo pt.2” with WCM’s Bad Gyal featuring Young Miko, among other collaborations. Most recently, she also performed at multiple LGBTQ+ Pride festivals, including Toronto Pride, Brooklyn Pride, and LA Pride.

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Tokischa’s manager Angelica Piche said: “The best results are accomplished by teams, and it’s a pleasure to unite with Warner Chappell. Tokischa and I are excited about this collaboration and the synergy that this alliance will bring.”

Gustavo Menéndez, president of U.S. Latin and Latin America for WCM, added: “We take a lot of pride in who we pair with and sign. We’re always looking to work with those who are relevant and possess true artistry. Tokischa is the perfect example of that: her music speaks to her completely original creative side and integrity, and the best is yet to come.”

+ HYBE continues its Latin American expansion with the launch of new offices in Mexico City, Miami and Los Angeles. This comes as HYBE launches a new label, DOCEMIL MUSIC, as well as the rebranding of Exile Music to ZARPAZO and Exile Podcasts to Ajá Podcasts.

CEO Jonghyun ‘JH’ Kah will work closely with General Manager Fernando Grediaga and COO Jeremy Norkin to build HYBE Latin America. Kah brings over decades of global management expertise including YG Entertainment and HYBE-Geffen. Grediaga brings over 23 years of industry experience, having held pivotal roles at EMI Music and Universal Music, championing artists like Molotov, Belanova, Café Tacvba, and RBD.

Norkin, with over twenty years of experience, has held roles at agencies including William Morris and United Talent Agency. Twice named a “Billboard Latin Power Player” and elected to Billboard’s “30 Under 30,” Jeremy co-founded Exile Music, which was acquired by HYBE in 2023. He opened UTA’s Miami office in 2014, building UTA’s strength in the LATAM space and representing a diverse list of artists such as Post Malone, Muse, and Ms. Lauryn Hill.

“With Spanish-language talent dominating the charts and expanding worldwide market share, now is the ideal time for a global powerhouse like HYBE to enter the Latin space. Combining HYBE’s resources with specialized Ibero-Americas knowhow is a failsafe formula to nurture tomorrow’s superstars,” said Norkin.

+ Capitol Christian Music Group (CCMG) has announced the promotion of Walter Thomas to VP of artist development at Motown Gospel and TAMLA Records. Additionally, Alexandria “Dria” Dollar has joined CCMG in the role of senior director of A&R at TAMLA and Motown Gospel.

The new position takes Thomas from director of artist development for CCMG in 2023 to his new role which comes with expanded responsibilities including overseeing the growth and nurturing of the company’s artist roster and development initiatives along with facilitating its marketing initiatives. Thomas formerly served as CEO of Agency 22 Music and Entertainment, managing artists such as DOE, JJ Hairston, Jonathan McReynolds, Maverick City Music, Smokie Norful and more.

Dollar, a two-time Grammy Award winner and recipient of Stellar and Dove Awards, will work closely with Thomas and spearhead efforts to discover, develop and sign new talent. Prior to joining CCMG, Dollar served as director of A&R at Reach Records in Atlanta, GA.

+ Communications and public relations specialist Melissa Nathan has launched The Agency Group.

The Agency Group team specializes in communications, crisis, reputation management, personal publicity and digital team services across entertainment, innovation, corporate and litigation clients. The firm’s current client roster includes HYBE America, Drake, Johnny Depp, the Chainsmokers, Logan Paul, DreamCrew, PRIME, Rostrum Records, Cedar Park Entertainment and Platoon, among others.

The executive team includes Breanna Butler as executive VP, Carolina Hurley as senior VP, Katie Case as VP, and Alyx Sealy as senior director. Rylie Long and Dervla McNeice round out the team.

+ UK artist Jordan Adetunji has signed to 300 Entertainment in North America and Warner Records UK as his global label partner. The 24-year-old talent recently unveiled the music video for his breakout track “Kehlani.”

“Partnering with 300 was a decision on people and actions for me,” said Jordan. “When meeting Kevin we talked a lot about the meaning of artist development and it felt a great home to continue our global journey!”

Kevin Liles, CEO of 300 Entertainment, said: “Jordan is a generational talent whose music transcends genres. 300 is built on recognizing an artist’s authentic self and empowering them to share their gifts with the world. We are proud to partner with Jordan’s management team and our incredible UK Warner Records family in this artistic journey.”

+ UTA has signed Brazilian electronic artist and DJ Victor Lou for worldwide representation, excluding Brazil, in all areas.

The Brazilian-born artist began his career in 2015, creating his own sound and visual style that connects his roots in the Brazilian “desande” dance music movement with techno and other club music elements. His hits include “Diu Diu Lai” (with Mochakk), “Laurinha,” “Untitled,” “Remote Control” and most recently, “Silverstone.”

+ Dylan Brewer has launched a new creative and experiential music marketing company called FRAUDULENT. Based in Los Angeles, FRAUDULENT has already launched campaigns with Grammy-award winning artist Laufey (in collaboration with Microsoft) and Jessie Reyez.

Brewer was formally VP of marketing and head of experiential at Epic Records. He is also a two-time Clio award-winning executive with over 10 years of experience at companies including Epic Records, Def Jam Recordings and Google. He also led experiential campaigns for artists such as Ozzy Osbourne, Judas Priest, Modest Mouse, Bakar and Madison Beer.

+ Boston Red Sox player Kenley Jansen has launched KJ74 Entertainment, a record label that aims to introduce the sounds of the Carribean island Curaçao.

Jansen’s deep-rooted connection to his homeland has inspired him to create KJ74 Entertainment. In a statement, he said, “I have been running a music label in Curaçao for the past four years, and I see the incredible potential in the cultural fusion and distinct sounds of our region. It is my passion to showcase the talent from my home country and our neighboring sister islands to the world.”

One of the first artists to join forces with KJ74 Entertainment is RAFIK, a talented musician of Lebanese and Colombian descent who hails from Curaçao. RAFIK released his debut single, “TUKUN,” under the KJ74 Entertainment banner on June 21.

Tuesday, June 25

Seventeen-year-old country singer-songwriter Ty Myers has signed with Records Nashville/ Columbia Records and will release his new song “Let ‘Em Talk” via the label “very soon,” according to the announcement. Myers is managed by Blake Shelton manager Narvel Blackstock of Starstruck Entertainment. He has enjoyed hits with his songs “Tie That Binds” and “Drinkin’ Alone” (which may be written from experience as he is not yet of drinking age). Following a date supporting Willie Nelson, the Texas native will be on the road all summer, playing headlining dates as well as hows with Wade Bowen and Randy Rogers Band, Cody Johnson, and Josh Meloy.

“It’s not often you meet a proper singer/songwriter at the tender age of 17 who writes, sings, plays guitar and performs like Ty Myers,” says Records CEO and co-founder Barry Weiss. “Simply put, this is what the music business is all about. We’re wildly excited at RECORDS Nashville to have signed him with our colleagues at Columbia Records.”

(Pictured above, L-R: Records’ Andrew Saltman, Records Nashville’s Josh Easler and Joe Fisher; Columbia Records’ Jenifer Mallory; Ty Myers; Columbia Records’ Julian Swirsky and Joe Gallo; Records’ Barry Weiss; Starstruck Entertainment’s Narvel Blackstock; Records’ David Enriquez)

+ Kelly Bolton has joined Warner Records as VP of A&R. Working out of Nashville, she will collaborate closely with co-chairman & CEO Aaron Bay-Schuck on signing, developing, and cultivating country artists for the Los Angeles-based label. She reports directly to EVP/ head of A&R Karen Kwak. The move follows the label’s recent country successes with Zach Bryan, Warren Zeiders, Dasha and others.

Bolton most recently served a five-year stint at Ashley Gorley’s Tape Room Music, where she rose to senior VP of A&R. At the company she built out a roster of 15 songwriters. Previously, she was with Big Deal Music and launched her career at Black River Entertainment, where she worked closely with a young Kelsea Ballerini.

Bay-Schuck said: “I’ve known Kelly for years, and her ear for talent is impeccable. She’s widely admired not only in the Nashville artist and songwriter community, but throughout the industry. Her addition to the team enables us to have boots on the ground in Music City with the advantage to actively engage, sign, and develop new artists hands-on. The potential to make a major impact is limitless.”

+ Rostrum Pacific has announced the appointment of Chris Atlas as president of Fat Beats, the long-running distributor and retail brand, which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. Fat Beats was acquired by Rostrum Pacific earlier this year.

Over the last two decades, Atlas has held key positions at Tommy Boy Records, Cornerstone Promotion, Def Jam Recordings, and Warner Records.

“Chris Atlas is someone we have admired for many years,” said Rostrum Pacific COO Jonathan Partch. “He brings incredible leadership, vision, insight and experience. I can think of no better person to lead and continue building the legacy of this great company. With Chris at the helm, we are putting our great partners in the best position to succeed.”

+ AEG Presents has announced that Don Strasburg has been named president of Rocky Mountains and Pacific Northwest regions. He ws previously co-president of those regions.

Strasburg, who will continue to be based out of Denver, will have sole oversight of AEG’s regional offices in both Denver and Seattle, managing a team that books concerts from clubs and theatres all the way up to stadiums in the regions. He began his career promoting shows in college and in 1992, along with a few partners, opened the Fox Theatre in Boulder, Co., a venue with which he remains active. He joined forces with Chuck Morris and Brent Fedrizzi to launch Bill Graham Presents/Chuck Morris Presents in 1998. Through a series of acquisitions including SFX and Clear Channel Entertainment, that company would eventually become part of Live Nation in 2005. Strasburg remained there for nine years before leaving with Morris and Fedrizzi to join AEG Live.

Shawn Trell, AEG Present EVP, COO and general counsel, says, “Don has a drive to win and succeed that is unmatched. He’s got an almost innate sense of knowing what the audience wants and where the trends are heading.”

+ Bravado, Universal Music Group’s merchandise and brand management company, has announced new leadership appointments across all departments. The new structure includes the hiring of Colin McIntosh as Chief Financial Officer as well as the promotions of Alyssa Tobias  to Senior Vice President, Head of Creative Services; Ashley Fogerty, who now oversees Business Affairs; Bill Ashton, who is now SVP of Commerce; Brian Schechter, who now oversees Brand Management; Keith Taperell, who now oversees licensing; and Stacie Swanson, who now holds the newly created role of VP, Artist Strategy.

+ Sony Music Nashville has promoted Lauren “LT” Thomas to Senior Vice President, Promotion. In this elevated role, Thomas will have day-to-day oversight of both the RCA and Columbia imprints. She will continue to report to Executive Vice President, Promotion, Steve Hodges; she was previously VP.

Thomas joined Sony Music Nashville in October 2009 and has risen through the ranks, overseeing the promotional efforts for the Columbia Nashville roster and all female staff for the past two years. Prior to joining the company, she spent five years at KMLE-FM in Phoenix.

Hodges comments, “For the past nine years I have watched LT grow and develop into a strong team leader and industry power player.  Her passion and work ethic are infectious and second to none.  I’m very proud to see her rise with this well-deserved promotion to Senior Vice President as she continues to step up and help the overall Sony national representation while continuing to lead the Columbia team.”

+ Shore Fire Media has hired Moya Crowley as an account executive. She joins from BT PR, where she served as a publicity coordinator or manager since 2019. She previously held internships at Grandstand Media, ID PR and Slate PR.

Monday, June 24

Carín León‘s Socios Music label has inked a global deal with Virgin Music Group and Island Records to release new music.

León, a singer-songwriter artist from Mexico, has had a massive year full of historic milestones as the first Latin artist ever to perform at both Coachella and Stagecoach in the same year. He also recently opened for the Rolling Stones and made his debut performance at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.

León is best known for his unique blend of música Mexicana and country. He won a Latin Grammy for his song “Como Lo Hice Yo,” and also boasts a string of popular singles like “Ni Me Debes Ni Te Debo,” “Te Lo Agradezco,” “No Es Por Acá,” and more. He released his “Boca Chueca Vol. 1” album under Virgin Music Group and debuted at No. 5 on Billboard’s Regional Mexican Albums chart and No. 8 on its Top Latin Albums chart.

In November of 2023, he was signed to an exclusive global publishing agreement with Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG).

“Carín León is a true outlier,” said Justin Eshak and Imran Majid, co-CEOs of Island Records. “He transcends not only stylistic and sonic boundaries, but also cultural boundaries. We’re thrilled to work with Carín and manager Jorge Juarez via this new partnership with Virgin Music Group and Socios Music. There’s no limit to what we can accomplish together.”

“We are proud to have assembled an incredibly collaborative team at both Virgin Music Group and Island Records to work alongside us to take Carín’s career to even greater heights,” said Jorge Juarez, Leon’s manager and business partner at Socios Music. “We are already seeing huge benefits from this new partnership and are excited for the future.”

Pictured above (L-R): Justin Eshak, Co-CEO (Island Records), Nat Pastor, Co-CEO (Virgin Music Group), Carín León (artist), Sir Lucian Grainge, Chairman and CEO (Universal Music Group), Jorge Juarez (Socios Music), Imran Majid, Co-CEO (Island Records), Victor Gonzalez, President of Latin (Virgin Music Group).

+ Rimas Entertainment has appointed Rodrigo Prichard as the new general manager of Rimas Entertainment, effective July 1. Kristen Quintero-Garriga also joins as vice president of brand partnerships under RIT.MO, the newly established division that acts as a creative consultancy and sales force for the entire Rimas conglomerate and its external clients.

In her new role, she will lead brand partnerships, turning the entity into an accelerator of marketing and creative resources, where she will bring her experience to Rimas, Habibi, Rimas Sports, Fundación Rimas, and Rimas Nation, among others.

As a lawyer by profession, Prichard joins Rimas following a successful career at Universal Music Latin as executive VP of legal and business affairs. He is well-known in the industry for being instrumental in many of the largest deals in Latin music.

Before joining the company, Quintero-Garriga held notable roles as market manager at companies like Puma Energy LATAM and Burger King.

+ Sony Music Publishing Nashville announced it has signed a global agreement with Clint Black. The deal will see the company administering songs across the country star’s catalog of compositions including “A Good Run Of Bad Luck,” “Like The Rain,” “Summer’s Comin’,” “Nothin’ But The Taillights,” and more.

Black has received numerous honors for his creative achievements such as a Grammy award; multiple CMA, AMA and ACM awards, including the 2023 ACM Honors Poet’s award; a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame; and an induction into the Grand Ole Opry.

Clint Black said, “I have great respect for Rusty and the entire team at Sony Music Publishing Nashville, and I am excited to move forward on all things past, present and future!”

Sony Music Publishing Nashville CEO Rusty Gaston said, “Clint Black is without a doubt a country music icon, whose songs carved a unique path and propelled country into what it is today. We look forward to working with Clint and his team to extend his creative influence even further.”

+ UTA has signed emerging country artist George Pippen for worldwide representation in all areas. Pippen is managed by Brent Shows and Emily Clark at ALTAR MGMT.

The signing comes off the release of his single “Indiana Knows My Name,” the first off his debut album, “Growing Pains.”

+ Night Stone Records, the independent label founded in 2021 by Juan Munoz, has signed a worldwide distribution deal with The Orchard. Night Stone Records roster includes B. Howard, Otti, RMB Justize, PRIVATEHOUR, Kris Hollis, BJ So Cole and Million$.

Munoz also expands the Night Stone brand by establishing Night Stone Games, a new independent game studio. Ken Fox, co-founder of Warner Brothers Games San Francisco, joins Night Stone Games as the studio head.

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