Music Industry Moves: Lana Del Rey to Be Honored With Songwriter Icon Award at NMPA Annual Meeting

Lana Del Rey will be honored by the National Music Publishers’ Association (NMPA) during the organization’s Annual Meeting at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall on June 12.

Del Rey will receive this year’s NMPA Songwriter Icon award in recognition of her “completely original aesthetic that has been emulated by an entire generation,” per the NMPA’s official announcement.

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Additionally, Warner Music Group CEO Robert Kyncl will sit down for a keynote conversation and Register of Copyrights Shira Perlmutter to discuss the protection of intellectual property. The event will also award Savan Kotecha with the NMPA Non-Performing Songwriter Icon award for his successes in pop music that range from penning hits for Ariana Grande, One Direction, Britney Spears and many more. The song “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” co-written by Luigi Creatore, Hugo Peretti and George David Weiss, will be honored as an NMPA Iconic Song.

Congressman Darrell Issa (R-CA) will receive the NMPA President’s award for his efforts in supporting artists and creators.

+ Dominican artist Tokischa is set to launch SOL, her own record label, in partnership with her manager Angelica Piche and Warner Music Latina. Tokischa will release her own music through SOL and will also have the ability to sign new artists to the imprint. The deal is supported by Atlantic Records.

“We are thrilled to launch SOL, a label that will be a home for misunderstood artists. It’s very important for us to give a voice and a space to people who, like us, started from scratch,” said Piche, SOL’s co-founder.

“Tokischa is a one of one artist. We could not be more excited to be part of this next chapter of her career and working alongside Angelica, Alejandro and the entire team,” said Atlantic Music Group Chairman/CEO Julie Greenwald and Atlantic Records Chairman/CEO Craig Kallman.

Tokischa’s trajectory includes collaborations with superstars such as Madonna, Rosalía, J Balvin, Ozuna, and Marshmello.

Pictured above (L-R): Memo Parra, Brenda Carrasco, Alejandro Duque, Angelica Piche, Tokischa, Natalie Cotton, Roberto Andrade Dirak, Francisco Granados and Aton Ben-Horin.

+ Sony Music Publishing UK has renewed an exclusive global publishing agreement with electronic dance music duo Gorgon City. Additionally, Gorgon City has launched Realm Publishing in partnership with SMP and announced UK producer and DJ Riordan as Realm’s first signing.

Recently, Gorgon City shared the news of their upcoming fifth album “Reverie” (slated for July 19), along with the album’s lead singles “Biggest Regret” with Bbyafricka, and “All That You Need” with Caroline Byrne. The duo will also be performing shows all summer with their residency at LIV Las Vegas, as well as at The Brooklyn Mirage, Los Angeles’ Shrine and Ushuaia Ibiza.

+ UTA has hired Lucy Pullin and Virgil Thomas as agents in the Music Crossover division. Pullin joins the team from ie: entertainment ltd and Thomas from Endeavor. Pullin will be based out of the London office and Thomas in Los Angeles.

Thomas recently signed executive music producer and music editor Jason Ruder, whose notable credits include “The Color Purple,” “Maestro,” “Babylon,” “La La Land,” “The Great Gatsby” and “Joker.” Currently, Ruder is leading music production for “Joker: Folie à Deux.”

Additionally, the Music Crossover group recently signed Emmy Award-winning composer Laura Karpman, coming on the heels of her first Oscar nomination for her “American Fiction” score, as well as Grammy-winning music supervisors Julia Michels and Julianne Jordan, best known for their work on “A Star is Born” and the “Pitch Perfect” franchise.

+ Warner Chappell Music (WCM), in partnership with the Roots and Live Nation Urban, will be hosting its first “Message in the Music” songwriting camp from May 28 – June 1 in Philadelphia, parallel to the “Roots Picnic” 2024 festival.

Hosted by Ryan Press (WCM), Shawn Gee (Live Nation Urban), Pop Wansel, and Questlove and Black Thought (the Roots) – in conjunction with Sons of Legends (Caliph Gamble, Rob Murray Jr., Abijah Preston) – the inaugural camp will host a series of sessions designed to expand opportunities for local writers and producers and cultivate a range of creative collaborations.

WCM is expecting 50+ writers and artists to attend the camp, including high profile artists from the Philadelphia area, as well as chart-topping songwriters and producers from WCM’s roster.

Wednesday, May 22

Warner Music has revealed its plans to expand into Nigeria by opening its first full-owned office hub in Lagos.

In a press release, Warner Music Africa (WMA) explained its new hub will “enable Warner Music Group to provide more of its A&R, Operations and Marketing expertise to Nigeria’s creative ecosystem.”

WMA’s management team — comprised of Alfonso Perez-Soto, president of emerging markets; Laverne Thomas, operations lead for WMA; Temi Adeniji, managing director for WMA, and Yoel Kenan, CEO of Africori — recently met with African government officials to establish the company’s plans for growth.

Adeniji and Perez-Soto have spearheaded the signing and development of CKay (Atlantic Records), whose viral single “Love Nwantiti” has been certified platinum in the U.S. Additionally, WMA recently signed 26-year-old Nigerian singer-songwriter Joeboy, who has created his own label, Young Legend, with WMA providing global distribution for the venture.

+ Brandon Silverstein’s S10 Publishing and Avex USA have inked a co-publishing deal with Kavi, the producer behind the Hot 100-topping “Million Dollar Baby” by Tommy Richman. Kavi is also closely collaborating with Richman on his forthcoming self-titled album while continuing to work with acts including Playboi Carti, Lil Tecca, Swae Lee, Yeat, Destroy Lonely and others.

Kavi shared, “Brandon and Naoki have amazing energy, and I’m excited to bring more of my musical ideas to life, supported by the incredible teams at S10 and Avex.”

“Kavi is a creative force of nature and I am so excited to be working with Benny, Alix and the Avex team on this,” said Silverstein.

+ Sony Music Publishing Nashville and CAM Creative have signed country music artist Ryan Larkins to a global publishing deal. Notably, Larkins co-wrote Bill Anderson’s Grammy nominated song “Someday It’ll All Make Sense” featuring Dolly Parton.

Larkins said, “I am so thankful for the opportunity to write for Sony Music Publishing. Rusty, Aubrey and team have been huge champions of mine. I am so excited to see what the future holds. I am so excited to partner with Trisha McClanahan. Her success, experience and belief in me and my music left me with no doubt she was the right person for me. Carole-Ann has believed in me from the beginning and I’m so thankful to continue to work with her. I can’t wait to see the great things we’re going to achieve together.”

Sony Music Publishing Nashville CEO Rusty Gaston said, “From the moment I first met Ryan, it was obvious he had the heart of a true American storyteller. His songs carry the spirit, emotions, and images that make country music special. It has been amazing to watch him celebrate his first #1 single and now his first major award nomination, and we look forward to many more of his successes in the future.”

+ Janis Ian has signed an exclusive deal with Sony Music Publishing to manage her entire catalog worldwide (excluding Japan).

“I’ve worked with Sony Music Publishing for years, and Esther Friedman and her team have shown their love of music beyond just the business side,” said Ian. “Although my catalog’s been with various publishers through the years, I’m tremendously excited about having it all in one place, with people I trust.”

The award-winning artist has been making music, entertaining people, and tackling important topics for more than 60 years. She wrote her first song at the age of 12 and two years later wrote and recorded her first hit single, “Society’s Child.” The controversial song about an interracial couple in the 1960s reached No. 14 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart and No. 13 on Cash Box Pop Singles and Canada’s RPM charts, but was banned by many radio stations because of its subject matter. The song was later inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2002.

Throughout the years, Ian has released 23 studio albums, along with five live albums. Her songs have been covered by countless artists across all genres and eras, including Celine Dion, Joan Baez, Shirley Bassey, Nina Simone, Glen Campbell, Cher, Patti LuPone, Jeff Beck and Johnny Depp, Mel Torme, and more.

Monday, May 20

The estate of Otis Redding, otherwise known as Big O Holdings LLC, has selected Sony Music Publishing to administer Redding’s music catalog across the U.S.

Redding was a renowned soul and rhythm and blues musician, otherwise known as “The King of Soul.” He released his debut album, “Pain In My Heart” in 1964 which produced his first No. 1 hit, “These Arms of Mine.” The song reached No. 20 on the R&B charts, and was included on several soundtracks, and most prominently in the 1987 film “Dirty Dancing.” He was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989, the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1994 and honored with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1999.

“For over 50 years I have been diligent to make sure Otis’ legacy remains relevant and recognizable around the world. I feel that the Sony Music Publishing team can assist my family in this never-ending effort,” said Redding’s wife, Zelma Redding.

“As one of the most significant songwriters of our lifetime, Otis Redding remains an American treasure,” stated Sony Music Publishing Chairman/CEO Jon Platt. “Otis’ songs have shaped the cultural landscape across genres and generations, and it is a privilege to partner with the Redding family as stateside custodians of this singular music catalog.”


Pictured above (L-R ) – (rear left) Arron Saxe, Walter Jones, Derek Crownover, Jarred Andrews, Dexter Redding (rear center) Justin Andrews, Zelma Redding, Karla Redding-Andrews, Brian Monaco, Liz Lewis, Jon Platt.

+ Big Loud Texas has tapped Brendon Anthony as vice president of the imprint, effective immediately. Based in Austin, Anthony will oversee the Texas operation across label functions, working with Big Loud Texas’ co-founders Miranda Lambert and Jon Randall, as well as key members of the Big Loud Records team.

“I am very proud to join the amazing team at Big Loud and look forward to working with Miranda and Jon to create something truly special in Big Loud Texas,” Anthony said “Being a part of growing and supporting the Texas music industry has been my focus for over 25 years and I am thrilled to continue that effort by joining Big Loud Texas.”

“We’re so proud to have Brendon join us at Big Loud Texas,” shared Lambert. “He is as passionate as we are about the Texas music scene and has knowledge that will benefit artists in so many ways.”

“Not only does he bring years of knowledge of the Texas music industry and culture to the table,” Randall noted, “but his legendary and respected musicianship has given him firsthand experience in touring and recording, and a deep understanding of what Texas music artists need in a record label. We are lucky to have him.”

Brendon Anthony most recently served as director of the Texas Music Office, the agency within the Office of the Governor tasked with overseeing policy related to the Texas commercial music industry.

+ Sony Music Publishing has upped Nasra Artan to the new position of head of international A&R. Artan will take on a broader role in spearheading SMP’s international creative strategy and be responsible for liaising across SMP’s A&R teams. She will continue to be based out of London and will report to SMP’s President of International, Guy Henderson.

Henderson said, “It gives me great pleasure to announce Nasra’s promotion. In addition to her skill set, energy and drive, Nasra approaches the creative world with an open mind, knowing that great songwriters and big songs can come from anywhere. She is well positioned to excel in this new role, and we all look forward to achieving further success together on behalf of our international roster.”

Artan first joined the company in 2022 as European A&R Manager. Prior to joining the company, Artan spent three years at Warner Music Norway, most recently as A&R project manager.

+ iann dior — best known for his feature on 24kGoldn’s Billboard Hot 100-topping “Mood” — has signed to Big Noise Music Group. The 25-year-old American artist released his latest single, “Edge of Tomorrow,” on May 10 with the label.

Big Noise President Jon Cohen shared, “Welcoming iann and his team into the Big Noise family has been truly exciting for all of us! Between the new music and his global touring presence, iann will certainly turn heads throughout the year and beyond.”

Nick Gross, Big Noise CEO, said, “Iann dior is one of those dream artists you hope you have the chance to work with every couple of years as a label. His ear for melody and attention to detail around the art he makes is very special, and I’m really looking forward to our partnership.

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