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The Music Business Worldwide Podcast

Updated 25 days ago

Business
Music
Music Interviews
Entrepreneurship
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Music Business Worldwide (MBW) is the leading information and jobs service for the global music industry. The MBW Podcast profiles some of the brightest sparks – and most successful executives – working in the global business today. Recent interviews include: Kerry Trainor, CEO of SoundCloud; Steve Stoute, CEO of Google-backed UnitedMasters; Milana Rabkin Lewis, CEO of $12m-backed Stem; Daniel Glass, CEO of Glassnote Records; and Justin Tranter, songwriter for artists like Selena Gomez, Fifth Harmony, John Legend and Gwen Stefani.

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Music Business Worldwide (MBW) is the leading information and jobs service for the global music industry. The MBW Podcast profiles some of the brightest sparks – and most successful executives – working in the global business today. Recent interviews include: Kerry Trainor, CEO of SoundCloud; Steve Stoute, CEO of Google-backed UnitedMasters; Milana Rabkin Lewis, CEO of $12m-backed Stem; Daniel Glass, CEO of Glassnote Records; and Justin Tranter, songwriter for artists like Selena Gomez, Fifth Harmony, John Legend and Gwen Stefani.

iTunes Ratings

6 Ratings
Average Ratings
4
1
0
0
1

iTunes Ratings

6 Ratings
Average Ratings
4
1
0
0
1
Cover image of The Music Business Worldwide Podcast

The Music Business Worldwide Podcast

Latest release on Nov 17, 2020

All 17 episodes from oldest to newest

Spice Girls, Kylie and a Near-Death Experience: Biff Stannard (Songwriter)

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On paper, Richard "Biff" Stannard is having one of the toughest years of his life. But music, as it has time and time again, has steered him away from the shadows – and towards celebration.

Stannard says that his songwriting style has always been to "write myself happy". This approach has led to him writing and producing some of the fizziest and most successful pop songs of all time, including a run of Spice Girls' hits such as Wannabe – a timeless No.1 record in both the US and the UK.

"Writing himself happy" is also a big part of how Stannard has dealt with mental health issues across his whole life. That life began in East London in 1966, in a house typified, he says, by an "environment of hyper-masculine men". Stannard had a troubled relationship with his father, a boxer, who didn't take kindly to his son's childhood love of music.

In this candid MBW Podcast, Stannard discusses his personal journey, including his early relationship with British maverick impresario, Tom Watkins, who gave the songwriter his break working with boyband East 17 in the 1990s. 

Watkins sadly died earlier this year – as did Stannard's mother, at 91. Stannard says his mom was particularly "protective" of him during his youth, and the only member of his immediate family that didn't discourage his love of music and creativity. 

That's not the only trauma Stannard has faced in the past 12 months, either. Having re-invented himself as a weight-lifter – replete with muscles like beach balls – Stannard broke the UK record for bench-press in his age category during a competition. He walked off stage jubilant, an official master of yet another discipline... before suffering a life-changing heart attack.

This narrative, though – again, thanks to music – has a happy ending. Stannard has co-written two singles on Kylie Minogue's DISCO, which has just become the UK's fastest-selling album of 2020, even outstripping the first-week performances of new records from superstars like Lady Gaga.

As such, DISCO is Stannard's biggest career success since he co-wrote and produced Ellie Goulding's worldwide hit Lights six years ago – and the beginning of a new chapter in his book of triumphs.

Kylie has been a constant collaborator in Stannard's career, which has seen him work with everyone from U2 to Little Mix, One Direction and Leona Lewis – and win both Ivor Novello and ASCAP Awards.

Nov 17 2020

34mins

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Bob Marley, Whitney Houston, and Spending $800 million: Larry Mestel (CEO, Primary Wave)

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Is Larry Mestel about to raise a billion dollars? Don't bet against it.

Mestel's Primary Wave has already raised over $800m in the past four years via two IP funds: a $300m fund in 2016, backed by Black Rock, and a further $500m-plus fund launched last year.

This money has been used by Primary Wave to acquire assets that live up to the company's billing as "the home of legends". 

As such, Primary Wave now owns substantial stakes in the song catalogs of the likes of Ray Charles, Bob Marley, Whitney Houston, Smokey Robinson and the Four Seasons.

Now, Mestel tells the MBW Podcast that Primary Wave is plotting an additional raise of equity that will be "significantly bigger" than those that have come before – although he's remaining tight-lipped on what form this might take.

Other topics covered in this discussion between Mestel and MBW founder, Tim Ingham, include Primary Wave's record label-esque approach to marketing,  why the firm might consider a fundraise on the stock exchange, and the fiercely competitive modern music rights acquisition marketplace. 

Nov 11 2020

32mins

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Justin Bieber, Black Lives Matter, and Being Hit By A Tornado: Poo Bear (Songwriter)

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Jason Boyd aka Poo Bear is one of the most successful songwriters working in the modern US pop music industry.

During a storied and Grammy-winning career, he's written and/or produced tracks for the likes of Pink, User, Lupe Fiasco, Chris Brown, Mariah Carey and Ty Dolla Sign. 

He's perhaps best known as a long-time collaborator of Justin Bieber, for whom Poo Bear has co-written hits like What Do You Mean?, Where Are U Now? (with Jack U) and Yummy, as well as working on Bieber's record-breaking remix of Despacito in 2017.

Poo Bear is now readying his own new solo album (set to be released via Platoon), Bars & Guitars – a follow-up to 2018's Poo Bear Presents... Bearthday Music, which featured the likes of Bieber, Jennifer Lopez and Zara Larsson.

We talk songwriting, the pandemic, Black Lives Matter, getting ripped off by the music business and much more.

Jul 17 2020

45mins

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Raising $1 million direct from fans: Mattias Tengblad (CEO, Corite)

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Mattias Tengblad is co-founder and CEO of Stockholm-based Corite, which believes it can revolutionize the way artists generate money from their recorded music.

Corite is, at first glance, a simple digital distributor, in the same core space as TuneCore, CD Baby, United Masters, Ditto etc. But it has a key difference: Corite enables fans to directly invest in artists themselves  – and then take a share of money paid out to these artists from future streaming royalties. As such, it enables fans to collectively act like a record label, financing artist campaigns while financially benefitting from an act's success.

Tengblad previously worked in eSports (as Head of Digital Development at MTG) as well as spending nearly five years at Universal Music Group as Commercial Director in Sweden, where he launched both UMG's flagship playlist brand, Digster, and the major's own DIY upload service, Spinnup.

Corite released its platform in beta in October 2019, and has since run over 25 campaigns that have raised over $30,000 for artists during its Swedish pilot. In the past two months, it has launched out of beta in Europe and raised an inside seed round to fund its growth.

May 18 2020

35mins

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Lil Pump, Dominic Fike and Turning Down $5 million: Dooney Battle (CEO, Tha Lights Global)

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Dooney Battle is CEO & Founder of Tha Lights Global – a record label, publisher and artist management company whose clients include Dominic Fike and Lil Pump.

Lil Pump previously signed to Warner Records in an $8m deal but now, two albums on, is back independent and releasing with Tha Lights Global direct, via distributor Vydia. 

Battle initially built Tha Lights Global as a home for social media influencers, especially on Musical-ly – the karaoke app which would go on to power TikTok.

Here, Battle explains why Tha Lights Global and Lil Pump have spurned major record company offers to stay indie this time around – and what he’s learned from his time in the business so far...

Apr 30 2020

23mins

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Spending over $1 billion on Songs: Merck Mercuriadis (CEO, Hipgnosis)

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Merck Mercuriadis is Founder & CEO of UK-based Hipgnosis Songs Fund, which has acquired songs – or pieces of songs – that have fuelled hits like Rihanna's Umbrella, Al Green's Let's Stay Together, Ed Sheeran's Shape Of You, Beyoncé's Single Ladies, The Chainsmokers' Closer and many more. Hipgnosis floated on the London Stock Exchange in July 2018 and, according to Mercuriadis, as of April 2020, has spent over a billion dollars acquiring music catalogs.

Apr 26 2020

42mins

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Steve Stoute, CEO, UnitedMasters: 'That's not the record business, man – that's the lottery business!'

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Steve Stoute is the founder and CEO of UnitedMasters – the US-based music distribution and services platform that in 2017 raised $70 million from backers including Google/Alphabet and 20th Century Fox.

UnitedMasters has signed brand partnership deals with the likes of the NBA and Apple Music, while helping break artists like NLE Choppa who – according to Stoute – signed an $8 million deal with Warner Records last year.

Stoute knows about the major label world: he's the ex-President of Urban Music at both Interscope and Sony Music, and rose to EVP at the former company.

On the podcast, Stoute explains why COVID-19 lockdown presents an opportunity for independent artists, why in his view modern record labels are over-spending and playing a "lottery" game with their money, and where UnitedMasters is going next.

Apr 16 2020

31mins

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Milana Rabkin Lewis, CEO, Stem: 'Our ambitions are bigger than just being a distributor.'

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Stem is one of the most talked-about companies in music distribution. 

The Los Angeles-based company was founded by Milana Rabkin Lewis (pictured) in 2015, and has raised over $12m to date, reportedly from figures including Scooter Braun and Mark Cuban. 

Here, Rabkin Lewis sets out Stem's vision for the future of the music industry, and explains why Stem quit DIY distribution last year to focus on making tools – particularly financial tools – for VIP artists.

Apr 06 2020

32mins

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David Israelite, CEO, NMPA: Spotify vs. Songwriters

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David Israelite is President and CEO of the National Music Publishers Association (NMPA).

The NMPA is up in arms over the fact that Spotify and Amazon - in addition to Google and Pandora – are objecting to a ruling offering songwriters a streaming pay rise in the United States.

Apple Music has declined to oppose the royalty rate rise, which has been decided by the Copyright Royalty Board.

David explains: "[Spotify and Amazon] have shown their true colors. They don't respect songwriters, they are attacking songwriters to try to cut what they pay them. It's time for everybody to rise up and say: enough."

Mar 11 2019

14mins

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Kerry Trainor, CEO, SoundCloud: 'We're in a much clearer place now.'

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An exclusive interview with SoundCloud CEO Kerry Trainor on the MBW Podcast. Trainor, who took charge of SoundCloud in August 2017, discusses a range of topics with MBW, including SoundCloud's power for emerging artists, the company's financial health, his hopes for the future of the industry and Spotify's recent flotation on the New York Stock Exchange.

May 30 2018

25mins

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