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Signings At Blue Guitar Music

Blue Guitar Music Publishing has added artist/songwriters David Kroll and Blake Gray to its roster.

Kroll has had a single on Sean Patrick McGraw, performed on Jimmy Kimmel and on CMT & GAC. Pictured (L-R) Back: Owner Daniel Wood, staff writer Blake Gray, Creative Director Holly Nance, Owner Danny Pool, Seated: Kroll.

Kroll has had a cut recorded by Sean Patrick McGraw, which was released as a single. Pictured (L-R) back: Blue Guitar owner Daniel Wood, staff writer Blake Gray, Creative Director Holly Nance, and owner Danny Pool; Seated: Kroll.

Blue Guitar Music Publishing has signed artist/ songwriter Blake Gray to it's roster. Gray is managed by Perdieu Management. Pictured (L-R) Back: Owner Daniel Wood, staff writer David Kroll, Creative Director Holly Nance, Owner Danny Pool, Seated: Gray

Blake Gray also signed with the company. Her career is overseen by Perdieu Management. Pictured (L-R) Back: owner Daniel Wood, staff writer David Kroll, Creative Director Holly Nance, and owner Danny Pool; Seated: Gray

Bug Music Adds Emerson Hart To Roster

Emerson Hart

Emerson Hart

Bug Music has signed Emerson Hart, best known as the songwriter and frontman of multi-platinum rock group Tonic.

Under terms of the agreement, Bug Music and Hart have entered into a co-publishing deal encompassing Hart’s future recordings and his critically-acclaimed 2007 solo album Cigarettes and Gasoline.

Hart, who relocated to Nashville within the last few years, has been busy collaborating in Music City with other artists and his recently regrouped band. Tonic is recording an album to be released next spring on 429/Savoy.

Tonic has sold upwards of 4 million units, had six Top 10 singles, and several Grammy nominations. One of the band’s biggest hits was “If You Could Only See.” After a decade together, Tonic took a break and Hart released his solo album which spawned two Top 20 singles.

Bug Music’s more than 250,000 copyrights include classics such as “What a Wonderful World,” “Fever” and “Happy Together,” as well as songs from Johnny Cash, Pete Townshend, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Ashley Gorley, Kings of Leon, and numerous others.

Industry News: APA Inks Tritt, Bass Berry Moves, Etc.

  (l-r): Chris Trotter, Genspring/Suntrust Bank; Robert Williams, Outback Promotions; Kissy Black, Lotos Nile Media; Tony Rodono, Aleven Creatives; Clif Doyal, Corporate Publicist, AirPlay Direct; Scott  Welch, EVP AirPlay Direct; Mike Hagler, Jr., Director of New Media for Dolly Parton; Robert Weingartz, CEO, AirPlay Direct (seated); James Dorsey, Board Member, AirPlay Direct; John Gillin, Board Member, AirPlay Direct; Clay DuBose, Advisor, AirPlay Direct; Raleigh Squires, Operations Manager, AirPlay Direct; Steve Ivey, IMI Music. Photo credit: Courtney Skiver

The digital music delivery platform AirPlay Direct held a Summit / Think Tank in Nashville last week led by CEO Robert Weingartz. Board Members, investors, and advisers met to exchange ideas and discuss company growth. (L-R): Chris Trotter, Genspring/SunTrust Bank; Robert Williams, Outback Promotions; Kissy Black, Lotos Nile Media; Tony Rodono, Aleven Creatives; Clif Doyal, Corporate Publicist, AirPlay Direct; Scott Welch, EVP AirPlay Direct; Mike Hagler, Jr., Director of New Media for Dolly Parton; Robert Weingartz, CEO, AirPlay Direct (seated); James Dorsey, Board Member, AirPlay Direct; John Gillin, Board Member, AirPlay Direct; Clay DuBose, Advisor, AirPlay Direct; Raleigh Squires, Operations Manager, AirPlay Direct; Steve Ivey, IMI Music. Photo: Courtney Skiver

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APA has signed Travis Tritt for booking representation. Sr. VP Bonnie Sugarman is the responsible agent and is lining up 2010 fair, festival and corporate dates.

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The Nashville Bass Berry and Sims offices are moving Dec. 15. The lawyers are headed to the new Pinnacle at Symphony Place, 150 Third Avenue South, Suite 2800, Nashville, TN 37201.
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Black Room Records has opened in Nashville under the direction of Rachel Dodson and Sierra Jacobson. The company started a year and a half ago as an artist management firm and recently added the indie label. The roster includes Red Shepherd, Ben Schofield, and Kait Lawson. The outfit also comprises Number None Booking, which is being overseen by Matt Spiess, and SRBR Publishing. Contact them at [email protected]
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Local production company PK Pictures has long worked with corporate clients such as MTV, Wal-Mart, Saturn, Rite Aid, and State Farm, and is now expanding to include videos, parties and more. PK Pictures, headed by owner/founder Greg Page, provides film and video production, post production, new media services, DVD Authoring, 2D and 3D animation, motion graphics, web design and hosting, interactive media, CD-ROM, PowerPoint, and creative media design.

PK Pictures also runs the in-house NuMynd Studios offering projection compositing, a voice-over/tracking room, editing and compositing. It’s also home to the first “green” green-screen soundstage in the southeast, which is said to consume less than 18% of the energy of a typical green-screen stage.

Signings And Musical Chairs

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Lisa Strickland

Golden Music Nashville has hired Lisa Strickland as Regional Director Northeast Promotion and Marketing, effective Mon., Nov. 2. She has spent the last two years at Citadel Media as Director of Affiliate Relations and Distribution Sales, working on American Country Countdown with Kix Brooks.

The move to Golden, whose roster includes Williams Riley and Benton Blount, reunites Strickland and Brad Howell who first worked together in the Warner Bros. promotion department. Strickland’s 20 years in the business also includes being KZLA’s MD/Asst. PD, and time as a regional director with Asylum Records, Warner Bros., Dream Catchers, and Universal South.

She can be reached at 615-289-2319 or [email protected]

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John Michael Montgomery has signed with The Bobby Roberts Company for concert booking.

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Sara Evans has signed with Spalding Entertainment, the company which also manages Brooks & Dunn, Jason Aldean and others.

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Average Joe’s Entertainment, the label home to Colt Ford, has signed Brantley Gilbert. With Atlanta and Nashville offices, the label is headed by CEO Shannon Houchins and other employees include Ken Madson.

Gilbert is managed by Ken Fulghum. His album A Modern Day Prodigal Son was released earlier this month and the follow-up Halfway To Heaven is due in February 2010.

Average Joe’s Entertainment is located at 1010 17th Ave. South, Nashville, TN 37212 and can be reached by phone at 615-329-4762.

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Mickie James, a star of World Wrestling Entertainment, has signed with Sherry Massaro of Skyline Management Group, Inc. for management and Absolute Publicity’s Don Grubbs for public relations. She has also obtained the services of local stylist Lori Bumgarner and is expected to announce plans for a country music career in the coming weeks.

Blue Steel Signs Burns And Poe

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(L-R) Burns, Pope and Poe

Local indie label Blue Steel Records has added Burns & Poe to its roster. The duo made up of Michelle Poe and former Trick Pony member Keith Burns is prepping its next single, “Don’t Get No Better Than That,” to be released to radio Nov. 9 via CDX. Burns wrote the song with Mark Oliverius, who also produced it. The duo’s first album for the label is expected in Spring 2010.

Earlier this year Burns & Poe charted at No. 21 on MusicRow’s Country Breakout Chart with the Evergreen Records release “It’s Always A Woman.”

Steve Pope is CEO of Blue Steel Records, which also has Anna Garrott and Latham Moore on the roster. Garrott’s new single, “What A Way To Go,” is at radio now and her CD Only Time Will Tell will be available digitally on Oct. 27 at major outlets including iTunes and her Web site.

BNA Signs Chris Janson

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Pictured from left to right: Ansel Davis, manager; Renee Bell, Executive Vice President A&R, Sony Music Nashville; Janson and Sony Music Nashville Chairman Joe Galante.

Chris Janson is celebrating his newly inked record deal with Sony Music Nashville’s BNA Records. The 23-year-old Missouri native moved to Nashville at age 19 and landed a gig at Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge, performing four shows a day, seven days a week for a year. Now the singer-songwriter plays monthly at Puckett’s Grocery in Leiper’s Fork, TN.

Industry Items: Release Schedule, Signings, New Business

bbmRobin Ball and Todd Bradley have opened Burning Blue Music, a full-service entertainment company dedicated to artist management, recording, producing, songwriting, performance, media training and artist development. The pair will continue operating Red Current Recording studio in Brentwood, TN which has hosted sessions by James Otto, Lady Antebellum and the Muzik Mafia, to name a few. Ball and Bradley have worked extensively with Grammy winning producer David Leonard (Prince, Bare Naked Ladies, Indigo Girls, K.D. Lang) in other ventures.

Burning Blue Music is currently developing Tori Bigelow and released her EP, I Believe, last month.
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From NARM:

NARM has been advised by Universal Music Group Distribution that they and their labels have decided to make Monday, November 23 the street date for their titles for the upcoming Thanksgiving week only. It appears that other major label groups may do the same.

The impetus for moving the street date in this instance is to afford retailers the chance to place re-orders on fast-breaking titles and get product back in stock for the long weekend, as well as positively impact sales during this all-important timeframe.

It is also NARM’s expectation that our Association’s established position strongly urging physical and digital album release date parity will be honored with the adjustment to Monday, November 23.

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The Harper Agency has added multi-award winning bluegrass Gospel group Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver to its roster for booking Christian music events and concerts. Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver was awarded IBMA Vocal Group of the Year seven consecutive years and can be scheduled by contacting the Harper Agency at 615-851-4500 or via e-mail at [email protected]

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Artist Laura Bryna has signed an international record and licensing agreement with AGR Television Records in Hamburg, Germany. AGR is distributed by the international division of Universal Music Group. AGR Television Records handles international distribution for U.S. artists including Tracy Lawrence and Mark Chesnutt.

Matchless Music Plans Release; Herndon Inks New Deals

davidShawn Pennington has opened Matchless Music Group with David St. Romain as the flagship artist. The company’s debut album is due in the first quarter of 2010, and St. Romain’s lead single, “That’s Love,” goes to radio Oct. 19 with David Haley’s EdgeHill Music handling promotion. Pennington and St. Romain met during Season 5 of Nashville Star, where St. Romain finished third in the competition.

Pennington launched Matchless Management in May after resigning from Dale Morris & Associates. Other artists signed to the management, production and consulting firm include Stoney Creek Records artists Ash Bowers and Thompson Square.

Pennington was a professional musician who moved to Nashville in early 1997 to become the bandleader and tour manager for Sara Evans. In 2002 he segued into the business side of the industry and held a management position with Dale Morris & Associates where he was actively involved in launching the careers of Gretchen Wilson, Big & Rich, John Rich, Cowboy Troy, the Muzik Mafia, Randy Owen (solo), and Kellie Coffey.

Pennington and Matchless Music Group can be reached at 615-491-8285 and [email protected] Haley and EdgeHill Music’s contact info is 615-973-0132 and [email protected]

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Ty Herndon has inked a management deal with The Bucket Agency. He has also signed publishing and recording deals with Dove Award winning producer Wayne Haun and Haun’s Sunset Gallery Publishing. Herndon is nearing completion of his first self–penned record Journey On, scheduled for a 2010 release on Vine Records.

Herndon is known for the 1995 charttopper “What Mattered Most.” His manager can be contacted at [email protected]

BBR Adds To Roster

Pictured above L-R: Hallmark Direction Company Artist Manager John Dorris, Broken Bow Records CEO/President Benny Brown, Blake Wise, and Hallmark Direction Company Artist Manager Sheila Shipley Biddy.

Pictured L-R: Hallmark Direction Company artist manager John Dorris, Broken Bow Records CEO/President Benny Brown, Blake Wise, and Hallmark Direction Company Artist Manager Sheila Shipley Biddy.

Broken Bow Records CEO/President Benny Brown has signed Blake Wise to a recording deal with BBR and a publishing deal with Magic Mustang Music. The rising artist is working on songs for his upcoming debut album for the label.

Wise is managed by Hallmark Direction Company, which is helmed by managers John Dorris and Shelia Shipley Biddy.

“We absolutely love the energy and soul of Blake,” says Brown. “He just has the ‘it’ factor, he’s larger than life on stage, he’s got raw talent and a personality to match.”

BBR is also home to Jason Aldean, Randy Owen, Crossin Dixon, Dean Brody, and Krista Marie. Its sister label Stoney Creek has artists Megan Mullins and Ash Bowers.

Worley Signs With Schatzi, Biddy Leaves Stringtown, Aristo Int’l Report

worleyHot Schatz Public Relations has signed platinum-selling Darryl Worley to its roster of clients for independent publicity services. He broke onto the country music scene in 2000 with “When You Need My Love” and has charted 17 songs including “I Miss My Friend,” “Awful, Beautiful Life” and “A Good Day to Run.” His biggest career hit came in 2003 with the 9/11 tribute song, “Have You Forgotten?” Worley’s latest single and Top 20 hit, “Sounds Like Life to Me,” is the second single from his sixth studio album, Sounds Like Life, on Stroudavarious Records, released in early June.

Hot Schatz PR opened its Nashville offices in 1992 under the leadership of owner Schatzi Hageman. In addition to Worley, current clients include Trace Adkins, Steve Azar, Jason Michael Carroll, Jamie O’Neal, Rissi Palmer, Shooter Jennings, Skyline Music Publishing and country newcomer Stevie Walker.

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Due to slowed financial resources Shelia Shipley Biddy is no longer working as President of Stringtown Records, the label that is home to John Michael Montgomery. She is seeking other opportunities and can be reached at Hallmark Direction Company at (615) 320-7714 ext. 226 or by email at [email protected]

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The Aristo International Report – Summer Issue is now available, with articles such as “Global Showcases Spotlighting International Talent Jump-starts 2009 CMA Music Festival” and “Globe-trotting with the Bellamy Brothers.” Read it here.