Music Industry Moves: Conan Gray and Thuy Join Weverse, Hybe’s Superfan Platform

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Conan Gray and Thuy are the newest artists to join Weverse, the global superfan platform under Hybe.

Joining Weverse, Gray and Thuy will be able to directly engage with their fans online by offering a range of exclusive experiences. Conan Gray’s official artist community on Weverse will launch on Wednesday, followed by Thuy’s on March 17.

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“I’m thrilled to be able to launch my very own Weverse, and connect with fans all over the world in a new way. Can’t wait to see all of y’all there,” said Gray.

Vietnamese American singer Thuy is gearing up for her inaugural tour across Australia in late March and her appearance at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in April. She added, “I’m super excited to join Weverse! I’m looking forward to connecting with fans globally, both new and old. I have a lot in store for this year that I’m excited to share with the Weverse community. See you there!”

Joon Choi, president of Weverse stated, “We are excited to have Conan Gray and thuy join Weverse and experience genuine connection with their fans through our services. As the ultimate fan communication solution, along with welcoming artists from diverse genres and regions, we will continue to provide our services to best meet the evolving needs of new and existing artists, as well as their fans.”

+ Mercury Records‘ executive team is expanding to include Executive Vice Preseident of Mercury Records, Alex Coslov and Senior VP of Media for Mercury Records, Marisa Bianco. The Republic Records execs will transition to full-time roles at Mercury Records, the label announced today.

Additionally, Mario Vazquez will join the team as VP, of audience and streaming in a new dual role also reporting to Executive VP of Global Commerce and Digital Strategy for Republic Records, Kevin Lipson.

“Ben and I are thrilled to welcome Alex, Marisa & Mario to our team at Mercury Records,” said Mercury Records President, Tyler Arnold. “From day one, our goal has been to foster a creative, supportive, and forward-thinking home for our artists to thrive. We are incredibly grateful to expand our team with this talented group of executives who will help further that mission as we usher in our next chapter.”

+ Big Loud Rock, the alternative/rock imprint of Big Loud Records, has announced the appointment of Paul Wright as VP of creative strategy. In this pivotal role, Wright will spearhead the label’s visual marketing strategy and execution, reporting directly to Lloyd Norman, senior VP of Big Loud Rock.

Wright joins from Red Bull Records, where he served most recently as director of creative marketing, working with acts such as Blxst, Beartooth, Albert Hammond Jr (of the Strokes), the Aces, AwolNation and more.

+ AEG Presents has entered a new partnership with Cárdenas Marketing Network (CMN), the Chicago-based Latin music entertainment company.

“We are excited to partner with AEG Presents, one of the most powerful global forces in live entertainment. I have known Jay Marciano for over 40 years and have deep respect for all his accomplishments and the tremendous business that he has built at AEG Presents. Together we look forward to making an even greater impact on the explosive growth in the Latin market” commented Henry Cardenas, CMN Founder and CEO.

“Henry is a true entrepreneur and visionary, and what he and his team have built is simply awe-inspiring. We have been looking to expand our presence in Latin music and concerts for quite some time, and it was important that we took the time to find the right partner; we found it in Henry and CMN,” added Jay Marciano, AEG Presents Chairman and CEO. “AEG Presents has always placed a premium on preserving the identity and unique voice of our partner brands while providing them with the support and infrastructure to expand their reach and influence. Cárdenas Marketing Network is the most recognized and trusted name in Latin concert promotion, and we are so proud to welcome Henry and his team to the family.”

+ Stu Bergen has been appointed the interim CEO for Deezer, effective April 1. Bergen has served as an independent non-executive director on Deezer’s board since February 2023.

Bergen will serve as interim CEO until a new permanent CEO joins the company, and will remain a member of the Deezer Board of Directors. Bergen has held key leadership positions with multiple record labels, including Warner Music for over 14 years. Most recently, he was CEO of International and Global Commercial Services at Warner Music. He also served as president of International Recorded Music at Warner Music Group.

+ Creative Artists Agency (CAA) has promoted Lola Castillo Murphy, Hugh Parsons, and Matthew Rutledge to agents in the music touring department.

Murphy, based in London, began her career as an intern in the Agency Group (UTA) in 2014 before joining CAA in 2015 as a general department assistant, where she proceeded to work with Jon Ollier, Rebecca Nichols, Ben Coles, Emma Banks, and Mike Greek.

London-based Parsons began his career at Island Records in 2016, working in the marketing team. In 2017, he joined CAA as an assistant to Laura Newton, Ben Kouijzer and Jen Hammel. Based in Nashville, Rutledge held positions at the Agency Coalition and Agency for the Performing Arts before joining CAA as an assistant to Brian Waymire in 2021.

+ Peermusic U.K. has signed Nothing But Thieves to an exclusive, global music publishing deal. The deal will include the band’s fifth studio album. Their prior catalog remains with Sony Music Publishing.

The band released their fourth studio album “Dead Club City” in June 2023 (produced by the band’s guitarist Dom Craik along with John Gilmore), which debuted at No. 1 on the UK and Netherlands Album Charts.

“I am thrilled to be welcoming Nothing But Thieves to the peermusic roster,” said Nigel Elderton. “This was an extremely competitive deal and a huge priority signing for us! We are honored that the band are entrusting us with their upcoming music and we are very much looking forward to working with them and their management team.”

Formed in 2012, Nothing But Thieves features singer Conor Mason, guitarist Joe Langridge-Brown, guitarist Dominic Craik, bassist Philip Blake, and drummer James Price. The band’s first studio, self-titled album debuted in the U.K. in October 2015 through Sony Music Entertainment and in the U.S. in February 2016 through RCA Victor.

March 12, Wednesday

Together with Spotify, the 100 Percenters, who have long rallied for more equitable treatment for songwriters in the industry, will offer career grants of $2,500 each to ten professional songwriters and producers.

The partnership is supported by Spotify’s Creator Equity Fund as the latest part of its ongoing commitment to fostering equity in the audio space. Applications for these grants will be open starting March 15 and will close April 15.

To qualify for consideration, applicants must be members of the 100 Percenters community and have a minimum of two years of professional experience. Additionally, applicants should have three or more commercial songwriting or producer credits, be a U.S. citizen earning an annual income of less than $100,000, and be able to provide verifiable proof of income.

“We are thrilled to embark on this journey with Spotify, contributing to the success of talented professionals in the music community. These career grants symbolize our commitment to nurturing and supporting the careers of songwriters and producers who are the backbone of our industry,” said Tiffany Red, founder and executive director of the 100 Percenters.

“Songwriters and producers are the heart and soul of the music industry. We’re excited to partner with the 100 Percenters to help elevate and empower both established and emerging songwriters & producers,” added Jacqueline Ankner, songwriter and publishing relations manager at Spotify.

+ Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG) has signed Yusuf Islam, also known as Cat Stevens, to an exclusive, global administration agreement.

Inducted into both the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Stevens’ biggest hits include “Father and Son,” “Wild World,” “The Wind” and “Morning Has Broken.” He has sold over 100 million records and amassed more than 2 billion streams to date.

Jody Gerson, chairman and CEO of UMPG, said, “For me personally, ‘Tea for the Tillerman’ and ‘Teaser and the Firecat’ stand the test of time. Songs from both albums do what great music is supposed to do – they make us feel deeply. It’s a privilege to be able to work with Yusuf and Yoriyos and the entire UMPG global team to introduce these incredible songs to new generations.”

Yoriyos Adamos, son and manager of Stevens, added, “This is the first time the publishing catalog has been united under one roof with the master catalog since Chris Blackwell’s Island Records years. I was really excited about teaming up with Jody and Mike after our initial discussions. We share a dynamic vision and are all committed to supporting Yusuf’s music and his timeless message of peace.”

Stevens’ music has been featured in numerous movies, most famously in Hal Ashby’s “Harold and Maude,” “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” “The Wind” and “The Holdovers.”

Pictured above (L-R): Yoriyos Adamos, Yusuf Islam and UMPG UK MD Mike McCormack.

+ Reservoir Media, Inc., an independent music company, has entered a new publishing deal with Kings of Leon. The deal includes the band’s upcoming album, “Can We Please Have Fun.”

Since their debut in 2003, Kings of Leon (Caleb (guitar/vocals), Nathan (drums), Jared (bass) and Matthew Followill (guitar)) have released eight albums and sold over 20 million albums and nearly 40 million singles worldwide.

In February, Kings of Leon released their new album’s lead single, “Mustang,” and also announced their 2024 world tour produced by Live Nation in North America. The tour will hit 26 cities across the U.S. and Canada starting August 14.

John Ozier, Reservoir’s executive VP of creative, commented, “It is an honor to bring my fellow Nashvillians Caleb, Nathan, Jared, and Matthew to Reservoir. As incredible musicians and forward thinkers, Kings of Leon have cemented themselves as one of this generation’s greatest rock groups, and we’re excited to support the next chapter of their legacy: Can We Please Have Fun.”

Reservoir President and Chief Operating Officer Rell Lafargue added, “Expanding our catalog with new music from Kings of Leon is a golden opportunity for Reservoir to work alongside one of the greatest rock bands of recent times. We look forward to working with the band through the rollout of Can We Please Have Fun and as they embark on their international tour to bring this excellent rock record to their fanbase worldwide.”

+ Katy Perry’s Unsub Publishing, in partnership with Warner Chappell Music, has signed an exclusive co-publishing deal with Debbii Dawson. In 2023, she released her debut EP “Learning,” including the song “Eulogy For Nobody.”

“I couldn’t be more excited to have Unsub partner with the incredibly gifted songwriting talent that is Debbii Dawson,” said Perry in a statement. “My team and I have fallen in love with Debbii’s ability to fill her songs with a perspective that feels so uniquely her. She’s the type of artist that gives voice to your subconscious. She’s a rare find and someone I believe has the brightest of futures ahead of her as an artist, songwriter, and creative force.”

Maura Duval, senior director of A&R for Warner Chappel Music (WCM) and Jacob Koransky, manager of A&R for WCM said, “Debbii is a rare treasure. Ever since we first heard her demos from fellow WCM songwriter, Gabe Reali, we were sold. Her voice is undeniably unique and her storytelling is both authentic and distinct. We’re excited to help develop such a promising star.”

+ Live Nation’s music discovery platform OnesToWatch and Mastercard are launching the second season of an artist accelerator program tailored to meet the surging demand for live music.

The program selects five emerging artists to support by providing them with resources including live performances, mentorship from artists and industry experts, educational boot camps to hone their skills for using emerging technology, merchandising, marketing and more, alongside touring and content opportunities throughout the year.

+ Prescription Songs has added the Miami-based songwriter and producer JayM to their roster of artists. In a special partnership with DallasK, JayM was signed into the company by Prescription Songs A&Rs Siara Behar and Shari Fitch.

Originally from Venezuela, JayM (real name Juan Romero) has roots in Latin music expanding into pop and rock. JayM frequently collaborated with artists such as Gale, DallasK, Aloisio and G40. More recently he’s expanded his network into the English market working alongside Nate Campany, Elijah Noll, Tele, John Feldman and Kat Dahlia. Recent and upcoming credits include tracks with Marshmello, Lunay, Beéle, LiL CaKe, Brray, Corina Smith and Aloisio, among others.

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