Home Leisure & Sports Black artists and executives take center stage at recent Music Biz Conference

Black artists and executives take center stage at recent Music Biz Conference

by Cass Teague
(l-r) Shannon Sanders, Executive Director- Creative at BMI Nashville, and Cass Teague, Nashville PRIDE Newspaper writer, and columnist enjoy an event at Music Biz 2022.  (Photo by Jacque Lewis)

Music Biz 2022 took place May 9 – 12, 2022 at the JW Marriott Nashville. The first in-person Music Biz event since January 2020, attendees enjoyed four days of industry-defining conversations and connections, as well as important discussions on how the industry may evolve to become more inclusive and better serve the needs of all industry professionals. 

The Music Business Association (Music Biz) is a not-for-profit membership organization that advances, promotes and invests in the future of the music business by providing a trusted forum where ideas and cooperation flourish. Through events, education and engagement, the Association brings together the full breadth of the industry for unparalleled access to networking, resources and thought leadership. 

Sony Music Publishing (SMP) Chairman & CEO, Jon Platt participated in a keynote conversation during the conference. Amidst a 25-year career working with songwriters including Jay-Z, Beyoncé, Drake, Pharrell Williams and Rihanna, Platt has greatly influenced the dominance of Hip-Hop music by elevating how R&B/Hip-Hop artists are respected & compensated as songwriters. Thanks to Platt’s songwriter-first, universally inclusive leadership style, SMP is setting the standard on how songwriters are paid and was the first company to expedite foreign royalty payments. 

GRAMMY, ACM & NAACP Image Award nominated, multi-platinum Country recording artist and songwriter Jimmie Allen hosted the organization’s first-ever Bizzy Awards program, Wednesday, May 11. Hailed by GRAMMY.com as one of “5 Black Artists Rewriting Country Music,” Allen has carved an impressive path to stardom in just a few years. He has amassed more than 1 billion on-demand streams, and made history as the first Black artist to launch a career with two consecutive No. 1 hits — the 2x Platinum single “Best Shot” and Platinum-certified “Make Me Want To,” both from his 2018 debut album, “Mercury Lane.” His single “Freedom Was A Highway” went to #1 on both the Billboard and Mediabase charts, marking his third career No 1. Allen received his first GRAMMY nomination for Best New Artist in 2021, and was the only Country nominee in an all-genre category for the 64th Annual GRAMMY Awards, in addition to receiving an Outstanding New Artist nomination at the 53rd NAACP Image Awards. He recently went out on his first headlining tour, the Down Home Tour 2022, and was a host of the 57th ACM Awards, alongside Dolly Parton and Gabby Barrett, where he was nominated for Male Artist of the Year. 

Music Biz Brunch, Tuesday, May 10 during the Conference featured a conversation with and performance by mother-daughter singer-songwriter team, O.N.E the Duo, comprised of Nashville-based mother Tekitha and daughter Prana Supreme. Both have ties to Hip-Hop royalty — Prana’s father is RZA, the founder, producer & de-facto leader of Wu-Tang Clan, and Tekitha was the group’s featured female vocalist. The two have created their own style, blending their Hip-Hop roots with the creative energy and storytellers of Nashville. Their goal is to tell their story through as many different mediums as possible — the written word, film, and of course, through music. 

These are but a few of the highlights of the four-day event. For more about Music Biz, see their website: musicbiz.org 


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