Red Bull Studios New York’s Loud Dreams Lecture Visits Collegium

(Photo by Carl Chisolm, courtesy of Red Bull)

Collegium on Wednesday, March 27th, presented by Red Bull Studios, featured a multi-dimensional look into today’s world of hip-hop. Led by respected hip-hop journalist Shaheem Reid of XXL and MTV News, the panelists’ discussion centered on the development of production duo Sean C. & LV’s new album Loud Dreams Vol. 1. Released on Tuesday, the album features hip-hop heavyweights like Pusha T, Bun B, Fabolous, Raekwon and many more. Joining Reid and Sean C. & LV were chief engineer of Red Bull Studios New York Chris Tabron, artist duo CharlieRED, and veteran emcee Styles P. All of the panelists are featured on Loud Dreams Vol. 1.

The panel addressed the evolving role of mixtapes. “The nomenclature needs to be updated, because it’s basically an album,” said Tabron. “To me, growing up, it was a way to hear something exclusive. The difference between a mixtape and an album is in the marketing.” Sean C. added, “People use the term ‘mixtape’ to take pressure off of themselves. They don’t want pressure from the label to have as much success as an ‘album’ even though they’re the same thing.” The once-competitive mixtape circuit has become accessible to anyone. The panelists agreed that success in today’s mixtape circuit lies in one’s connections, networking and social media skills.

Professor Larry Miller introduces the panel (Photo by Carl Chisolm, courtesy of Red Bull)

Given that music creation has become so accessible, Reid asked the panelists to weigh in on the idea of needing the “machine” of a major label. Reid cited Macklemore as a hip-hop artist who achieved success without a label, and in his success, still does not rely on one. Styles P said, “Major labels are machines. But when you’re independent, you become the machine. The majors are now looking at the artist as the type of machine they are. They’ll ask, ‘What’s your Twitter following?’ They want someone who invests in themselves. At the end of the day you’re the machine anyway. It comes down to how much work you’re willing to do.”

But at a time when anyone can make music and use social media, how does an aspiring artist stand out from the crowd and make him or herself valuable? Sean C. stressed the importance of relationships and networking. Tabron added, “Know your audience. And in terms of staying power, you need to be yourself. People respond to sincerity.”

On one end of the table sat Styles P, who has been active in the New York hip-hop scene for over 20 years and offered insightful retrospectives. On the other end were CharlieRED’s Chauncy Sherod and Cobaine Ivory, a young duo who released their first EP in December 2012. The diversity of the panelists offered contrasting points of view, but all of the panelists agreed that New York rap is in a good place, and are optimistic for the future. Tabron justified his optimism with a simple yet thought-provoking argument: “A river is always strongest at the source.”

Industry Pioneer Jac Holzman Presented with Music Business Visionary Award

On Wednesday, March 12, NYU Steinhardt proudly presented industry pioneer Jac Holzman with the third Music Business Program Visionary Award. The award honors a business figure of note for their lasting and positive impact on the music industry through innovative, effective and creative business leadership.

Holzman sat down with Faculty Songwriter-in-Residence and Master Teacher in Songwriting Phil Galdston before an audience of Music Business students, alumni, faculty, and Holzman’s own family, friends and colleagues to discuss Holzman’s unique and extraordinary perspective on the history and future of music and technology. In the course of the conversation, Holzman explained in-depth the creation of Elektra Records in his college dorm room in 1950, and Nonesuch Records in 1964. He also discussed in detail his process of developing bands like Love, The Doors and The Paul Butterfield Blues Band.

Holzman entered the recorded music industry at a time “when independents started in the same place. We didn’t know what to do, so we made it up as we went along and learned how to move to our own internal drummer.” Holzman reminisced about a time, particularly the 1950s, when independent record labels communicated with each other about almost everything. “It was convivial and nobody was trying to push the other person underwater.” Holzman considers these years to be the time in recorded music history that is most essential to the future of the music industry.

To Holzman, working in the music industry is not a job, but a calling. “A calling is something you can’t resist.” After over 60 years in the music business, Holzman spoke with the passion and spirit of someone who has just gotten started. A self-proclaimed autodidact, Holzman built Elektra’s catalog by going to artists’ homes with a tape recorder, and recording them himself. “Autodidacts are so in love with life and so in love with what they do, that they want to wrap themselves in it, and that’s what I wanted to do. I learned more and more, I got better at it, and I got smarter.” Galdston emphasized that Holzman discovered artists, pursued the artists, and engineered and produced the records – something that most executives today cannot do. Perhaps the most understated takeaway from the evening was how Holzman and Galdston’s conversation revolved around the music itself. Holzman maintains that artists are the most important part of a record label, and advised, “if you take care of the music, the music will take care of you.”

In 2013 Holzman launched the Doors app when he concluded that box sets had no place in the digital world. Holzman summarized the app’s 16-month development process as “the most pain and the most fun” he has ever had. With 1600 discrete items, it is the most comprehensive and fully interactive music app ever. Made with help from his family, the app is designed to test new approaches to digital music presentation, production techniques and the economics of pricing, marketing effectiveness, and the optimization and monetization of a product that offers unparalleled value through its ability to upgrade content and navigation.

Holzman left the audience with an invigorating reminder. “I’m not in the music business. I’m in music.” At the end of the conversation, Student Ambassador Board members Julia Pernicone (UG ’15) and Suzanne Rollins (G ’14) presented Holzman with the Visionary Award.

For more music and business wisdom, and secrets of Holzman’s remarkable career, pick up his book Follow the Music.

Alums Folayan Knight and Khari Cain (aka Needlz) Talk about Effort, Drive, and Success

Guest post by Peter Schwinge, G ’12, President of the MUBG Student Ambassador Board

On Friday, Feb 24th students from the Music Business Graduate program attended their first Professional Development Sequence of the spring semester and were treated to a wonderful experience from guest speakers and fellow NYU Alumni, Folayan Knight (UG’ 96) and Khari Cain (G ’03), aka Needlz.

From the onset, this was to be a different event. Typically guest speakers prepare a specific topic or presentation, yet after Ms. Knight briefly discussed her background (NYU Music Business graduate, Director of A&R at Island Def Jam, Senior Creative A&R at Hitco Music Publishing, Owner of Go Flip Yourself! to most recently Senior Manager of Creative at Kobalt Music Publishing) she turned to the 60+ students and asked, “What is it you want to know?”

With the floor left open, the students quickly jumped in with the pressing question, “How was it working with Redman, and Method Man?” A tantalizing story followed. With many of the audience follow-up questions regarding various sectors of the industry, Ms. Knight provided insightful responses on how to navigate each of the specific sectors. She dove into her experience-book with the common emphasis on your desire to put in the effort and drive to achieve your goals. From handling eccentric artists phone calls at random hours of the morning, negotiating a hot deal, to standing your ground…the basic takeaway is focus and follow-through.

About hour into her talk, the back door opened, to the surprise of the students, and through the crowd walked Khari Cain, aka Needlz – a fellow NYU graduate and Grammy-award winning producer. A delightful murmur radiated from the audience and a pleasant smile upon  Ms Knight’s face…as they had worked together for years.

She invited Mr. Cain up front with her and began an enjoyable conversation-like talk to the audience on the artist/manager relationship. A wonderful segment that openly displayed the balance of this kind of relationship. Stories from years past on how some things worked, and other times they didn’t, and what works out in the end with a relationship based on trust. Needlz, a truly humble gentleman that carries a big smile, is not the type of person you expect had just won a Grammy for his co-production on the Bruno Mars single, “Just The Way You Are”, as well as worked with such acts as Lupe Fiasco, Swizz Beats, Busta Rhymes, and 50 Cent. In an open conversation with the students, Mr. Cain’s message was clear…Don’t follow the pack, be true to yourself and your music, and have passion about what you do.

A truly entertaining and inspiring evening filled with a wealth of industry insights and stories that the students could digest and build upon for years to come. We thank both Ms. Knight and Mr. Cain for
taking the time out to share their knowledge and experiences with us.

Editor’s note: Bruno Mars single, “Just The Way You Are”, was the top-selling single in the world in 2011, with sales of over 12.5 million.

Follow Needlz on Twitter

Grad Student Report: The Orchard Co-Founder Richard Gottehrer speaks about Embracing Changes in the Music Industry

(MUBG students with Richard Gottehrer, center.)

Music Business grad student Maressa Levy writes this guest post for VELOCITY.

Richard Gottehrer spoke to MUBG students during the final Professional Development Sequence event of the fall semester, urging listeners to “keep your eye on what’s happening in front of you. The world changes today, and it’s changing very quickly.”

Gottehrer first broke into the music industry as a songwriter, and was just 16 when he wrote his hit single “I Want Candy.” Gottehrer also penned classic song “My Boyfriend’s Back,” which he jokes is his “contribution to cultural history.” While he has worked with industry notables such as Depeche Mode and Madonna, at 71 Gottehrer is still very involved in the current music scene. In addition to managing Danish duo The Raveonettes, Gottehrer was also a producer on the debut album by popular newcomer Dum Dum Girls.

Gottehrer co-founded the Orchard, a music distribution company, in 1997, and has since become the chief creative officer. With presence in over 20 global markets, the Orchard has experienced considerable success as a leader in both physical and digital distributions. The company also provides services in both retail and interactive marketing, and their creative licensing division has successfully placed artist’s tracks in a number of commercials, television episodes and films.

Despite rumors of the downfall of the music industry, Gottehrer encouraged students to embrace the ongoing changes of the industry, and to “let the things that are changing about the industry become part of what you’re doing.” Above all, Gottehrer advised, “just keep looking forward. If you want to be in this business, know that where you start may not be where you end up.”

Maressa Levy is a 2nd-year MUBG student originally from Florida. She received her BS from Emerson College, where she majored in journalism.

Posted on | Posted in Guest Speakers |

Pandora Founder Tim Westergren Presented with Music Business Visionary Award


(Pandora Founder Tim Westergren (left) speaks with Sam Howard-Spink; Photo by Chianan Yen courtesy of NYU Steinhardt)

On Wednesday, May 4, NYU Steinhardt proudly presented Pandora Founder Tim Westergren with the second Music Business Program Visionary Award. The award honors a business figure of note for their lasting and positive impact on the music industry through innovative, effective, and creative business leadership.

Mr. Westergren sat down with Clinical Assistant Professor Sam Howard-Spink before an audience of Music Business students, alumni, faculty, and friends to discuss the evolution of Pandora and his thoughts on the state of the music industry. In the course the interview, Mr. Westergren explained in-depth the creation of The Music Genome Project that powers Pandora’s personalized internet radio stations, as well as his time spent working with Congress to negotiate sensible performance royalty rates for internet radio broadcasters. He also discussed key moments in Pandora’s history such as its inclusion as a launch application on the Apple iPhone, and partnerships with auto companies such as Ford that facilitate listening to Pandora in the car.


(Students line up to ask Mr. Westergren their questions; Photo by Chianan Yen courtesy of NYU Steinhardt)

In response to student questions from the audience, Mr. Westergren talked about the ways in which Pandora balances its radio “feel” and still provides a link to download sales, and new projects that will extend the company’s reach with new partners.

At the end of the ceremony, Student Ambassador Board leaders Katie Curran (G ’11) and Zach Lee (UG’ 11) presented Mr. Westergren with the Visionary Award. In his acceptance remarks, Mr. Westergren encouraged students to make use of the many opportunities made available by the Web, and to use their knowledge and experience in the digital space to drive their entrepreneurial ideas and ambitions.

View Steinhardt’s Press Release here.

Stay up to date with Pandora by following Tim Westergren (@timwestergren) and Pandora (@pandora_radio) on Twitter.

Grad Student Report: Glassnote Founder Daniel Glass speaks about Label Identity, Artist Focus, and Career Building

(MUBG Program Director Catherine Moore with Daniel Glass at NYU)
Music Business grad student Maressa Levy writes this guest post for VELOCITY.

Daniel Glass stood in front of a room of music industry hopefuls in late February, urging students to “Absorb life, learn life, volunteer for everything and start small!”
The founder of independent music company Glassnote Entertainment Group, Glass offered his input to NYU’s Music Business Masters Candidates as part of their Professional Development Sequence, a program created to help students learn from and connect with those working in the industry.
Glass founded Glassnote Entertainment Group in 2007, building the full service music company on a three-year-plan with the hope that “artists would start coming to the label and acting as word-of-mouth advertisers for the company’s services.”
The plan worked, and Glassnote has since discovered and launched a number of successful artists, including West London natives Mumford & Sons, who released their debut album, Sigh No More, in 2010. Last month the album went to #2 on the Billboard charts, #1 on iTunes and they were the #1 trending topic on Twitter after their Grammy debut performance with music legend Bob Dylan.
Despite his success, Glass prefers to keep his team small and focus on building an identity for his company, which few labels have managed to maintain. “I based my career on doing things differently, but sticking with the artist,” Glass said. “I try to create a haven for artists where they trust each other and want to work together.”
Glass also encouraged students to accept change and innovation, reasoning that although the “media will change, the drive for quality music will sustain.”
Stemming from his passion for music and a fierce drive to set himself apart from his peers, Glass has managed to use his commitment to artist development and emerging technologies to launch a thriving company. Above all, Glass emphasized the necessity of immersing oneself in the music lifestyle, stating, “If you choose to be in music, live the life of culture.”

Collegium 2/16: The Business of Music in Movie Trailers

(From left: Yoav Goren, Robin Joseph, Orlando Rotundo, and Kellie Maltagliati)

Collegium on Wednesday, February 16th featured a multi-dimensional look into the world of film trailer music. Led by Kellie Maltagliati of Trailer Music Live, the panelists discussed writing, licensing, and editing music for movie trailers. Trailer music by nature complements the film and aims to inspire movie-goers to make the trip, and the panel included a variety of industry professionals who work closely on distinct aspects of placing music for movie trailers.

Representing the creative side of trailer music was Yoav Goren, an accomplished film music composer and music publisher with nearly 20 years of experience. His company Immediate Music has provided over 2,500 licenses and is one of the foremost production music libraries for licensing and custom scoring in Los Angeles. In 1992, Mr. Goren relocated from New York to Los Angeles and began writing commissioned custom scores for movie trailers and constructing a library of licensable music for film. More recently he has composed exclusively licensed, custom trailer scores for box-offices hits such as Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest, Avatar, and Toy Story 3. During the discussion Mr. Goren also noted that over the years, the affordability of recording technologies has had a dramatic impact on the amount of trailer music that studios have to choose from, and that there is an increasingly high awareness with regard to styles and trends in trailer music. As a composer, he must master a range of musical styles to fit different films and create value in his library.

As Creative Director of Film & Telvision at Primary Wave Music, Robin Joseph works to find sync opportunities for her artists’ songs in television, films, and online. Her music clearance credits include films such as The Notebook and Wedding Crashers, and television shows such as Queer Eye for The Straight Guy and American Gladiators. During the discussion, Ms. Joseph noted the difficulty in pushing new music to trailers and getting a placement as many studios will choose commonly used music or license from a library. As a music supervisor she must also be very familiar with Primary Wave’s library so that she may direct the appropriate music to each project. She and Mr. Goren both agreed that one of the most prominent issues for placing trailer music today is that of money and budgeting, which often leads studios to explore any number of options and in turn creates competition among artists and composers in search of a placement.

Orlando Rotundo of Giaronomo Productions brought to the panel experience as an editor of film trailers. Giaronomo has won numerous awards for its work in creating trailers for some of Hollywood’s most successful films, such as No Country for Old Men, The Departed, and Pulp Fiction. One Mr. Rotundo’s primary responsbilities as an editor is to screen music and experiment with different audio-visual pairings to find the best, most effective match. In other instances, however, he must cater his work to a studio’s musical selection. Mr. Rotundo also commented on how advancing technology is speeding up the entire editing process and shortening project deadlines. Like Mr. Goren and Ms. Joseph, he cited shrinking budgets as one of the trailer industry’s primary issues as artists like Led Zeppelin, Metallica, and Guns N’ Roses are notorious for charging six and seven-figure licensing fees.

On Saturday, February 19th, Yoav Goren’s music was performed live at NYU’s Skirball Center for the Performing Arts as part of Trailer Music Live, produced by Kellie Maltagliati. The event marked Trailer Music Live’s New York premier and featured the NYU Symphony Orchestra and the New York City Master Chorale conducted by John Graham.

Author Fred Goodman engages with students at Collegium

(Undergraduate Director Catherine Radbill interviews Fred Goodman)
On Wednesday, September 29th, acclaimed author Fred Goodman came to speak to Music Business undergraduates at Collegium, our weekly program meeting. Goodman’s most recent book, Fortune’s Fool, follows Edgar Bronfman Jr.’s rise to power as CEO of Warner Music Group. Fortune’s Fool takes an in-depth look into Bronfman’s life as an heir to the Seagram’s fortune and his dive into the recording industry. Goodman’s examination of Bronfman sheds light on the evolution and inner workings of Warner Music Group since it became a publicly traded company in 2005. More broadly, Fortune’s Fool provides a detailed study of current major label business models as they struggle to protect and control the value of their content in an increasingly digital industry, as well as the history of record labels’ relationship with Wall Street and big business over the last 30 years.
Fortune’s Fool portrays Bronfman and his high-profile cronies as being driven by inflated egos, big deals, and chart performance, and asks us to consider the future of the recording industry as the current financial stability of Warner Music Group denotes optimism and other major players continue to fade. In response to a student question, Goodman hypothesized that in the future, record labels are likely to outsource more and more, focusing on A&R and marketing as their areas of expertise.

What We’ve Been Up To (2009-2010)

Welcome to VELOCITY | The Official NYU Music Business Blog. We are excited to be expanding our online presence and featuring up-to-date news and information on program events and alumni. We realize that this first post is VOLUMINOUSLY long: future posts will be short and frequent. Here’s what we’ve been up to while we’ve been away:

2009 and 2010 Commencements held at Yankee Stadium

In 2008, the original Yankee Stadium closed its doors after 85 years of glory. The following spring, the first game was played in the new Yankee Stadium, inspired by, and built across the street from its predecessor. That May, New York University held its 2009 graduation events at the new ballpark for the first time, with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton giving the commencement speech. We were pleased to have such wonderful weather and proud to be a part of the first graduation ceremonies held in the new Yankee Stadium.

(MUSB Class of 2009 graduates outside of Radio City Music Hall)

NYU’s commencement this year was a bit rainy but we were happy to be up at the home of the Bronx Bombers once again, and actor Alec Baldwin gave a great speech. Luckily everyone was able to stay mostly dry despite the drizzle. Once again we were happy to be back uptown at Radio City Music Hall for Steinhardt’s ceremonies. Congratulations to the Undergraduate and Graduate Class of 2010.

(MUBG Class of 2010 graduates outside of Radio City Music Hall)

(Prof. Catherine Moore with MUBG Class of 2010 graduates outside Yankee Stadium; Photo by Joyce Lin)


Three of this year’s graduates earned Steinhardt awards for outstanding contributions to the NYU community:

Ida Bodman Award – Dana John

Richard Hirsch Memorial Award for Students in the Arts – Kristina Frost

GSO Star Award – Kathryn Sano


CEOs in the Arts Speakers Series

(Prof. Catherine Radbill, Kevin Liles, Prof. Shirley Washington, Ed Lover, and Prof. Catherine Moore)

CEOs in the Arts Series presents leading arts executives twice yearly in an interview format. These conversations explore the strategies, challenges, and goals of some of the city’s most important arts business leaders and the companies they run. On Friday, November 6, 2009, Steinhardt’s Council on Arts Management welcomed Kevin Liles and Ed Lover to the Rosenthal Pavilion at the NYU Kimmel Center for University Life.

Kevin Liles is the CEO and Founder of KWL Enterprises and has 20 years of experience in the music industry at the major label level. In 1993 Liles became the Mid-Atlantic Marketing Manager at Def Jam, and by 1998 accepted the position of President of the Def Jam Music Group. Following the merger that created the Island/Def Jam Music Group in 2002, Liles added the title of Executive V.P. of Island Def Jam Music Group to his resume. In 2004 he joined Warner Music Group as Executive V.P. and was part of the senior executive team when the company went public in 2005, and oversaw the expansion of the traditional record company role in artist’s career. 

Ed Lover is synonymous with New York City radio. Ed was a part of the infamous Ed Lower and Doctor Dre Morning Show, and has been a fixture in hip-hop for the last 20 years. Having done it all from TV to film to books, he is truly a renaissance man. Ed was the first voice heard on Power 105.1 when the station flipped the switch in 2002, and moved to afternoons in 2005. Currently, he holds down mornings on The Ed Lover Show.

More photos from the event can be viewed here.


NYU hosts the 2009 New Music Seminar

(NMS Co-Executive Director & Producer Dave Lory, Prof. Catherine Moore, and NMS Founder & Executive Director Tom Silverman in front of the Gibson Tour Bus at NMS 2009)

In July 2009, NYU Steinhardt and the Music Business program hosted the New Music Seminar. Held at the NYU Kimmel Center for University Life, the annual conference aims to create a music business in which talent can rise to its highest potential based solely on its merit, without regard to its financial resources or connections. The event focuses on emerging business models and innovation, and works to teach artists and their representatives better, affordable and faster ways to achieve success, so that they may also create a new economic model that better rewards both artists, their investors and those in artist services. The conference was a great success and we were proud to see many of our alumni and students in attendance. This year’s New York City summer conference was held at Webster Hall and was a sold-out success. Check out the New Music Seminar online here.

Visiting Scholar Dr. Guy Morrow

The Music Business Program is proud to welcome our very first visiting scholar, Dr. Guy Morrow. Based at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, Dr. Morrow is a lecturer on topics such as music business, arts management, rhythm, and music theory. His PhD concerned artist management practices in the Australian popular music industry and his current research concerns such practices in the global economy, positing the argument that while the artist managers’ role is increasingly central, their attempts to work globally are hampered by a lack of consistency in relation to best practice and conduct across different territories.

During a February 2010 talk at NYU, Dr. Morrow spoke about “artist management in the global economy”. In his discussion, he covered topics such as how managers navigate the international regulatory and deal with different sets of “rules”, how managers can cover several territories without having a local co-manager, differences in managing and decision-making when artists have success and revenue potential in multiple international markets. He also commented on his research projects about artist management and the music industry in China, and the characteristics of the Australian music scene.

We are truly excited to have Dr. Morrow with us and look forward to collaborating and hearing more about his interesting research projects in the future.

NYU Music Video Games Research Project launches

The NYU Music Video Games Research Project launched in February 2009. Led by Professor Sam Howard-Spink and Blair Gerold (UG ‘10), the initiative explores the commercial and cultural convergence of music and video games. On May 20th the group held an event marking the announcement of new Music Business Graduate classes and suggested sequences for students interested in music and audio for video games and other interactive media. Keep an eye out for the Music Video Games Research Project as there are sure to be more awesome events and gaming opportunities in the future.

Check out the NYU-MVGRP blog here.


JD Souther named Artist-in-Residence

(Prof. Catherine Radbill, JD Souther, and CMJ Founder & Executive Director Joanne Abbot Green)

JD Souther, one of the principal architects of the Southern California country-rock sound and the pen behind numerous hits by the Eagles and others, was the Artist-in-Residence at the NYU Steinhardt Music Business Program April 12-14, 2010. The residency was supported by the Aronson Family Speakers Fund and the CMJ Music Marathon and Film Festival.

Known for his extraordinary song crafting abilities, Souther co-wrote some of the Eagles’ most beloved hits including “Best of My Love,”  “Heartache Tonight,” “New Kid In Town,” and “Victim of Love.” His collaboration with the band continues through the Eagles’ 2007 release Long Road Out of Eden. Artists including George Strait, The Dixie Chicks, Glen Campbell, and Michael Buble have recorded his songs.

Souther received the prestigious ASCAP Golden Note Award in October 2009. The honor is reserved for songwriters, composers and artists who have achieved extraordinary career milestones. Past recipients include Reba McEntire, Garth Brooks, Sean “Diddy” Combs, Alan Jackson, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Quincy Jones, Stevie Wonder, André Previn and Tom Petty among others.

During his three-day residency, Mr. Souther worked with Music Business majors, as well as many other NYU musicians. MUSB junior and songwriter. Stephanie Wells got an opportunity to have lunch with Mr. Souther and present to him her recently completed, debut EP Maybe It’s The Music. “He was really cool,” said Steph. “A lot of the advice that he gave me was to really put myself out there lyrically and really focused on the parts in which I am most conversational. The biggest thing he told me is to trust what you have to say as a writer and to say things naturally and organically. That’s something that I will never forget.”


First MUSB students study abroad in Buenos Aires

(Morgan McGrath and Mike Greene at Plaza San Martin in Buenos Aires, Argentina)

This spring semester 2010, two undergraduate students studied abroad in Buenos Aires, Argentina, marking the Music Business program’s first representatives in the city. February through June, juniors Morgan McGrath and Mike Greene lived with an Argentine host family and attended classes at the NYU in Buenos Aires academic center in the neighborhood of Palermo. There, the two immersed themselves in the Spanish language and Argentine culture, studying everything from the national history and literature to popular culture and music.


MUBG student’s band releases iPhone app

Shinobi Ninja, the Brooklyn-based p
unk-funk-rap-hip-hop group featuring MUBG student Dave Machinist, recently released their very own iPhone app, Shinobi Ninja Attacks! Bundled with their new EP, the app is a side-scrolling, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles-inspired beat ‘em up game lets you play as favorite Shinobi Ninja member. Players roll through the streets of Brooklyn on their way to rock the mythical Club Babylon, and taking out evil hipsters, Jersey jerks, and angry subway riders that get in the way with drumsticks and guitars.

Perhaps the coolest feature of Shinobi Ninja Attacks! is that the game rewards fans for playing. As you reach higher levels, there are two free music videos can be unlocked. The app also uses smartphone GPS capability to locate real world concertgoers and delivers to them more free music and promotions over the air.

Check out a trailer for the app on YouTube here, and the app can be downloaded at

Alumni mentions in Billboard

Two of our Music Business alumni are in the 2009 Billboard “30 Under 30” top young executives list. Congratulations to Evan Lipschutz (undergrad ’02) and Seth Faber (undergrad ’04). Both alums remain actively connected to us: Seth was a panelist for the NYU MEISA Northeast Regional Conference (hosted at NYU) in November 2008, and Evan spoke recently in the Production and A&R class.

Seth Faber :: Director of marketing and artist development, Primary Wave Music Publishing

Internships at RCA Victor and Arista Records, an assistant’s job at Octone Records and 18 months as an artist development manager at Island Def Jam all led to Seth Faber, 27, to his current spot at Primary Wave Music Publishing. Since joining the company 18 months ago, Faber struck “a landmark licensing deal with [the digital transaction firm] GTECH, which enabled Aerosmith to be the first band to have its own multiplatform lottery campaign,” according to Primary Wave chief marketing officer Adam Lowenberg.

Evan Lipschutz :: Senior Director of A&R, Mercury Records

Hailing from Tampa, Fla., “a test market for food chains,” Evan Lipschutz, 29, feels like he comes from “a good breeding ground. I think like a basic American.” And he applies that viewpoint working with acts like Parachute, the Killers, Fall Out Boy, Duffy, Portishead and the up-and-coming Utah band Neon Trees. Mercury Records chief David Massey hired him at Sony Music International (later Daylight/Epic) as he was about to graduate from New York University’s Music Business Program.

Another alumnus, Bret Sjerven (UG ’04), made the list in 2007. For this and other news from our web newsletter archives, click here.


Several of our undergraduate and graduate alumni have been featured recently in the “Executive Turntable” section of Billboard, a weekly section that highlights job promotions around the industry.

Dileepan Ganesan (UG ’03) was promoted to senior income tracker at Cherry Lane Music Publishing from income tracker.  (June 20, 2009)

Charlie Davis (G ’08) was named director of sales by CD/vinyl manufacturer Sound Performance USA. He was the administrative coordinator for publishing at Downtown Records.  (August 1, 2009)

Jason Walker (G ’08) was promoted to director of royalties by licensing consulting company Rightsflow from manager of systems. (October 24, 2009)

Maureen Lloren (UG ’06) was named head of publishing at Glassnote Entertainment group after being the A&R coordinator at Denise Rich Songs/785 Publishing.  (December 12, 2009)

Fred Beteille (UG ’04) was appointed senior director of strategic technology at the Harry Fox Agency after a stint as director of business affairs and licensing technology. (June 19, 2010)

Facebook group created for MUSB and MUBG alums

(Music Business Program softball team, the Rock ‘n Ballers)

For all undergraduate and graduate alumni of the NYU Music Business Program a Facebook group has been set up. You may join here. (If this doesn’t work for you, simply search “NYU Music Business Alum” and the group should appear.) It was set up by Sam Gomez (UG ’99) and Professor Shirley Washington is an administrator. Please join as we are trying to make it an additional way to communicate with you and YOU with us! Let us know what you are doing, where you are, any job opportunities, events you are involved in, marriages, new babies, etc.

You will have to be approved and the request will most likely come to Professor Washington. It would be helpful to her if you could put your degree, B.M. or M.A., and year of graduation somewhere in the request. We already have 216 members so let’s keep it growing.