IMS Engage 2016 Speakers

  • James-Barton2

    James Barton

    James Barton is one of the world’s leading pioneers in electronic dance music, As founder and CEO of global clubbing brand Cream and the multi award winning Creamfields festivals, his vision, knowledge and business acumen has been instrumental in creating the thriving global event landscape as we know it today. As a market leader in his field, he has recently accepted the position of ‘President of Electronic Music’ for the world’s biggest event company Live Nation Entertainment.

    Born on August 28th 1968, James grew up with 3 brothers in a traditional family in the heart of Liverpool. In 1992 he started a club night called Cream which changed the face of clubbing during the nineties with its sheer ambition, and went on to become one of the greatest dance clubs in the world, defining a revolution that’s mirrored all over the world today. Over 3000 people from across the UK came to attend a club that represented a way of life as opposed to being just a source of entertainment. From this, Cream achieved extraordinary success in the record and compilation market and to date have sold over 5 million units. Its logo is one of the most widely recognised in the worldwide youth market and 20 years on the brand remains at the forefront of ‘cool’ UK exports.

    James moved to London in 1994 when he was headhunted to be Director of A&R at Deconstruction Records. He resigned in 1999 due to the unprecedented opportunity for growth taking place within the Cream Empire.

    Expanding his entrepreneurial efforts once again and buoyed by the growth of the brand in various areas, the company decided to attack the outdoor event business and in 1998 Creamfields was launched. Bringing a unique and innovative attitude to an emerging market Creamfields very quickly established itself as one of the leading outdoor music events in the country. Creamfields has also been recognised by the industry and has scooped many awards along the way including ‘Best Dance Event’ at the UK Festival Awards in 2004 / 2005 / 2009 / 2010 and 2011 and the highly coveted ‘Festival of The year’ award in the Music Week Awards 2010 beating off the likes of Glastonbury, V and Reading festivals.

    In 2000 Creamfields was launched on to the international market, the first event taking place in Ireland closely followed by Argentina. To date the festival has been staged in 16 countries around the world, including Spain, Czech Republic, Romania, Poland, Mexico, Brazil, Chile and Argentina which alone attracts over 60,000 people and has become the biggest one day dance event in Latin America. To date Creamfields is the only festival concept that has been successfully exploited on the global market and over the last couple of years has entered new territories including Malta and Australia. In August 2008 Creamfields UK celebrated its 10th Anniversary, to celebrate this landmark year the event became a 2 day camping festival, its overwhelming success has now seen Creamfields grow into a 3 day camping event and has sold out over the last 3 years with 2011 attracting a record breaking 50,000 people – the capacity for Creamfields 2012 has been increased to 55,000 people and is on course to beat last year’s success.

    Marc-Geiger2

    Marc Geiger

    Marc Geiger is WME’s Head of Music, representing leading artists in electronic, rock, pop, Christian, hip-hop, R&B and film scoring. Recognized by Billboard as one of the top 15 most influential executives in the music business, Geiger oversees a group of over 100 agents throughout the world. WME’s Music division booked more dates than any other agency in 2015, with over 35,000 appearances worldwide. In addition WME’s clients led the Grammys with more than 20 wins this year.

    Geiger’s diverse client roster includes Jack White, Outkast, David Byrne, Neil Diamond, The Flaming Lips, Jane’s Addiction, Steve Martin, Janelle Monae, Nine Inch Nails, Tom Petty, Pixies, Trent Reznor, Rihanna, Lindsey Stirling, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Tom Waits and Hans Zimmer.

    Consistently cited as a visionary for his ability to forecast trends in the music industry, Geiger has led WME’s expansion into several growth areas. WME was the first major music agency to form an EDM division, playing an integral role in setting the genre’s live touring model through festivals and residencies. In addition WME has made several key partnerships with leading music festivals throughout the world, including Lollapalooza which Geiger co-founded in 1991 and has since expanded to Argentina, Brazil, Chile and soon Berlin. In April 2015, WME | IMG acquired Australia’s top music booking agency Artist Voice, giving WME the largest global footprint of any music agency and providing access to Asia Pac’s accelerating live music business.

    Geiger began his career as a concert promoter and worked as an agent at Triad Artists. He co-created the Lollapalooza tour in 1991, which eventually became the Lollapalooza festival in Chicago. Subsequently, he was hired by Rick Rubin and appointed Executive Vice President of A&R, Marketing and New Media at American Recordings. In 1994 Geiger recognized the Internet’s enormous potential to provide a link between artists and consumers. It was then that Geiger purchased a site called UBL.com and became one of the very first to plug the music industry into the digital space with the launch of ARTISTdirect. The site went on to become a media juggernaut, housing a talent agency, two record labels, a marketing solutions division and one of the most popular music destinations on the early Internet. He served as the company’s Chairman and CEO before joining the William Morris Agency in 2003.

    A graduate of the University of California, San Diego, Geiger currently resides in Los Angeles.

    JohnMacFarlane2

    John MacFarlane

    John MacFarlane is the CEO and serves on the Board of Directors for Sonos, a smart speaker system connected over WiFi that allows you to stream your favorite music throughout your entire home.
    John co-founded Sonos in 2002 with a team on a mission to re-invent the home listening experience. For over a decade, John has helped to build a global leadership team consisting of the best acoustics, software, hardware and design innovators from around the world.

    In 1992, John co-founded and served as the CEO of Software.com. He and the Software.com team built large-scale interest based email systems for the world’s largest telecommunications companies. Software.com became a NASDAQ- listed company in 1999 and in 2001 merged with Phone.com to form Openwave Systems.
    John graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a Master of Science and holds a Bachelor of Science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

    Bob-Lefsetz

    Bob Lefsetz

    Bob Lefsetz is the author of “The Lefsetz Letter.” Famous for being beholden to no one and speaking the truth, Lefsetz addresses the issues that are at the core of the music business: downloading, copy protection, pricing and the music itself.

    His intense brilliance captivates readers from Steven Tyler to Rick Nielsen to Bryan Adams to Quincy Jones to EVERYBODY who’s in the music business.

    Never boring, always entertaining, Bob’s insights are fueled by his stint as an entertainment business attorney, majordomo of Sanctuary Music’s American division and consultancies to major labels.

    –Rhino
    “The Lefsetz Letter” has been publishing for over 25 years. First as hard copy, most recently as an email newsletter and now, for the first time, in blog form.

    Mike-Knobloch

    Mike Knobloch

    Ted-Cohen

    Ted Cohen

    Ted Cohen is Managing Partner of TAG Strategic. In an industry that’s been slow to embrace change, Ted was the exception to the stereotypical entertainment-exec rule. But, when you start out on the road with Prince, Alice Cooper & Van Halen, you’re primed for the unexpected.

    TAG is a digital entertainment consultancy focused on creating strategic relationships, identifying market opportunities, growing brands and defining best practices for the entertainment, tech & mobile industries. TAG provides strategy, guidance, market intelligence, product ideation and business development services to global firms and select start-ups. TAG delivers market leadership & sustainable, defensible advantage in the dynamic/rapidly evolving digital marketplace.

    As SVP-Digital for EMI Music, Cohen led global digital business development. During that time, EMI led the industry, embracing & exploiting new tech & business models such as digital downloads & online music subscriptions, wireless services, hi-def audio & Internet radio. Prior to EMI, Cohen created the groundbreaking Webnoize conference. Ted also led Consulting Adults, with clients such as Universal Studios, Amazon, Microsoft and Napster, & held senior positions at both Warner Records & Philips Electronics.

    A 35-year media industry vet, Cohen chaired MidemNet, served on the Grammy LA Board of Governors & the Grammy National Trustees. Currently on the boards of Mouse.org, an innovative computer literacy program, LyricFind & Makelight, Cohen served two terms as Chairman of Mobile Entertainment Forum Americas. Ted received the 2013 NARM Presidential Award, previously awarded to Ahmet Ertegun, & Dick Clark, among others.

    Ted continually looks for the next innovative tech & his next challenge, he really loves his life.

  • Arthur-Baker

    Arthur Baker

    Arthur Baker was among the most visible and widely imitated of the early hip-hop producers, masterminding breakthrough experiments with tape edits and synthetic beats before crossing over to introduce the art of remixing into the pop mainstream. He began his career as a club DJ in Boston and landed his first production work at Emergency Records, debuting with Northend’s “Happy Days.” After relocating to New York in 1979, Baker quickly immersed himself in the nascent hip-hop scene; there he was recruited by the Salsoul label to helm a session for Joe Bataan that yielded the rap novelty “Rap-O-Clap-O.” His stay in the Big Apple largely unsuccessful, he then returned to Boston, producing a handful of singles which went nowhere, among them Glory’s “Can You Guess What Groove This Is?”

    A move back to New York followed, at which time Baker joined the staff of Tommy Boy Records, where he teamed with co-producer Shep Pettibone to record Afrika Bambaataa’s groundbreaking 1982 single “Jazzy Sensation,” a remake of Gwen McCrae’s “Funky Sensation.” Assuming sole production control, Baker next reunited with Bambaataa for the classic “Planet Rock,” a watershed in hip-hop’s early evolution — a wholly synthesized record inspired by Kraftwerk’s “Trans-Europe Express,” its programmed beats left an indelible imprint on the music released in its wake. Baker’s success at Tommy Boy led to the formation of his own label, Streetwise Records; after helming underground club hits for Rockers Revenge, Nairobi, and Citispeak, he signed a then-unknown New Edition, issuing the teen vocal group’s debut single, “Candy Girl,” in 1982.

    Baker’s gradual absorption into the pop mainstream continued in 1983, when the cutting-edge British dance group New Order contacted him to produce their single “Confusion”; the record became an immediate club classic, even scraping into the American R&B charts. Remixes of the track also helped pioneer the remix aesthetic throughout the rock mainstream, and soon Baker was producing material for Naked Eyes, Face to Face, Diana Ross, Jeff Beck, and others. In 1989, he also assembled artists including Al Green, ABC, and Jimmy Somerville to record the all-star LP Merge, credited to Arthur Baker & the Backbeat Disciples. After a follow-up, 1991’s Give in to the Rhythm, he returned to production, albeit no longer exerting the same kind of influence as in the decade prior. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi

    John-Singleton

    John Singleton

    John Daniel Singleton is an American film director, screenwriter, and producer best known for directing Boyz n the Hood. For the film, he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director, becoming the first African American and youngest person to have ever been nominated for the award. Singleton is a native of South Los Angeles and many of his early films, such as Poetic Justice (1993), Higher Learning (1995), and Baby Boy (2001), consider the implications of inner-city violence. Some of his other films include dramas such as Rosewood (1997) in addition to action films such as Shaft (2000), 2 Fast 2 Furious (2003), and Four Brothers (2005).

    Pete-Tong

    Pete Tong

    There are few individuals in the world of dance music who can claim the kind of influence Pete Tong has had over the last twenty years. As the voice of Radio 1’s prestigious dance programming, Pete has held a commanding presence over the industry for more than two decades. With an unparalleled ear for new talent, Tong has become the leading tastemaker of the electronic generation. While he’s known publicly as Pete Tong the DJ, behind the scenes, he’s an industry icon.

    Having spent the majority of his life in England, Pete has recently resettled in Los Angeles to begin a new chapter in his life. He’s wasted little time establishing himself in the US, having helped inaugurate Clear Channel Entertainment’sEvolution dance brand in 2013 and recently expanding the programming to the extended two-hour segment, The Evolution Beatport Show with Pete Tong, broadcasting on 90 different Top 40 stations in the US.

    Meanwhile, his world famous BBC Radio 1 shows have only grown in popularity. Their collective reach has soared into the millions, broadcasting globally thanks to the BBC iPlayer. TheEssential Mix continues to be the Holy Grail of mix shows, while Tong’s Essential Selection is still the best place to premiere a new record.

    On the DJing front, Tong is currently championing three premier All Gone Pete Tong residencies in the US. Once a month, you can find him bridging the gap to the underground at Sound Nightclub in Los Angeles, while in Miami, he’s keeping the integrity of club culture alive at Story. His residency at the SLS Las Vegas sees him performing regularly at the brand new LiFE club, where he’s introducing a whole new palette of underground sounds to the party mecca. Finally, the All Gone Pete Tong brand has achieved global renown through world-class parties in Miami during WMC and Ibiza as well as dedicated stages at festivals like Creamfields, TomorrowWorld, and SW4.

    As a music producer, Tong has led an esteemed career over the years with notable releases on Pets Recordings, Ministry of Sound, Toolroom Records and more. His compilations have garnered critical acclaim–most notably 2013’s 60-track anthology, The Pete Tong Collection. More recently, he’s debuted on Suara with deep house anthem “The Bumps” alongside John Monkman, while also curating All Gone Ibiza 2014 alongside Tensnake for Defected as part of his All Gone Pete Tong compilation series.

    On the business side, Tong continues to be a prominent force in both the booking and A&R worlds. In 2008, he co-founded WME’s electronic music division alongside Joel Zimmerman, helping to turn the venture into one of the most powerful booking agencies in the world. He’s also relaunched his label FFRR, reclaiming his reputation for A&R and signing acts like Oliver Heldens, The Magician, Blonde and The Disciples. On top of this, Tong is responsible for founding The International Music Summit, which holds major events in Ibiza, Los Angeles and Singapore. Now in its 6th year, the event is viewed in the industry as The Premier Platform for Thought Leadership in Electronic Music.

    When all is said and done, one shudders to think what dance music would have been like without Pete Tong’s influence. Over the years, he’s played a crucial role in breaking new artists and changing the way people think about electronic music. With his new found home in Los Angeles, the British icon is looking to revolutionize the perception of dance music in America. If there’s anyone up for the task, it’s Pete Tong.

    Lee-Anderson2

    Lee Anderson

    AGENT, AM ONLY, NORTH AMERICA

    AM Only’s Vice President of the East Coast office Lee Anderson has had over a decade of experience in the live music industry. After spending nearly six years promoting live concerts in the Northeast region of the US, he joined AM Only in 2008. Since then, he has been a driving force behind the success of the agency and represents artists such as Skrillex, Zedd, SBTRKT, Disclosure, and Claude Vonstroke. Lee was featured in Billboard Magazine’s 40 Executives Under The Age of 40, both editions of InTheMix’s Power 50, and was nominated for the 2015 Pollstar Bobby Brooks Agent of the Year Award.

    Highlights/Accomplishments
    – VP of East Coast Agency Operations
    – Skrillex’s agent from day one, taking him from opening slots on deadmau5’s tour to international headlining touring machine, selling out arenas and taking the live experience to new levels.
    – Influential as touring agent helping build Disclosure from Mercury Lounge to Madison Square Garden
    – Zedd – started booking him from a bedroom producer to opening act for Skrillex….. to now a festival headliner and headlining arena tours.
    – Key figure in building out AM Only’s live roster having successfully steered the careers of Disclosure, Rudimental, SBTRKT, Tourist & Classixx
    – Securing Las Vegas residencies for some of the world’s biggest DJs
    – Represents a stable of several legends including Boys Noize and Claude Von Stroke
    – Building touring properties for his clients including Full Flex Express, Wildlife, Dirtybird BBQs for Claude Von Stroke.
    – Helped build Claude Von Stroke from underground rooms and into full scale touring act.


PAST SPEAKERS

  • P-Diddy-800x500

    P Diddy

    Quincy-Jones-800x500

    Quincy Jones

    Legendary musician, producer, entrepreneur and humanitarian.

    Highly impactful career spanning six decades.

    Recipient of 27 Grammys and 79 nominations.

    Seth-Troxler-800x500

    Seth Troxler

    Seth Troxler is one of dance music’s most recognizable characters, the guy with the big hair and the even bigger personality who doesn’t take himself, or life, too seriously; a straight-up human being who plays by his own rules. These qualities, along with his passion and seemingly endless knowledge of house and techno, have established him as a figurehead for a new wave of underground electronic music that flies in the face of the disposable idiocy of mainstream ‘EDM’.

    “I’ve always been kinda bat-shit crazy”, explains Seth. With his sporadic dreadlocks and well-twizled ‘tache, he comes across part streetwise Lothario, part Napoleon Dynamite’s creepy older cousin. Descended from a family of cowboys and Baptist preachers, he’s part African-American, part Egyptian, part Cherokee Indian but while his heritage is all-American his global outlook transcends his small-city Mid Western origins.

    Seth was born in Kalamazoo, a college town in the centre of Michigan half way between Detroit and Chicago, when his mum was just eighteen. His parents split when he was two but soon after his mum met his step dad who hosted a local radio show in his hometown called ‘Fade2Black’. “He’d play hip hop and early house,” recalls Seth, “but after midnight it would switch over to a show called ‘The Love Zone’ which was straight up fuck-jams. His DJ name was ‘2 Fine’ which was also his car registration plate. He was my father figure.” A pre-teen Seth would be allowed to stay up late and sit with him in the studio. “Being surrounded by that much good music from such an early age there was never an option for me not to become a DJ.” When Seth was fourteen his mum married his step dad and moved to the outskirts of Detroit, “This was a really big jump for me, losing all my friends and moving to such a big city.” A year later his house burnt down and he lost everything apart from, by a strange twist of fate, his turntables and mixer that he’d left at a friend’s house. “After that I dropped out of sport at school and decided to spend all my free time playing records.” His step dad was into early Chicago house like Dance Mania and Trax but living in Detroit he started going to underground techno raves. “I went to the same high school as Matt Dear and a friend of mine’s brother used to go raving with him.” Soon after moving to Detroit Seth threw his first illegal party and booked Magda to play for him. At fifteen he landed a job as techno buyer in Detroit’s ‘Melodies & Memories’ record store working alongside deep house legends Theo Parrish and Mike Huckaby.

    Through working in the record store he met Ryan Crosson, who would come in to buy vinyl from him, and through Ryan met Lee Curtiss and in turn Shaun Reeves who used to throw many of the most notorious illegal raves in Detroit at the time. It wasn’t long before Seth had moved in with Lee and the four found themselves throwing their now infamous ‘Tesh Club’ parties in Lee’s basement (a name taken from the German pronunciation of techno as ‘teshno’). It was there that the magic really began to happen; experiments in psychedelic substances and scientific examinations into the history of house and techno brought about a deep bond between the four, laying the foundations of what would later become their Visionquest partnership. This honeymoon period came to an abrupt halt when Shaun got robbed after a successful New Years Eve party and decided to quit Detroit and make a fresh start in Berlin. It was only a matter of time before Seth, Ryan and Lee followed suit.

    Moving to Berlin was the making of Seth both as a DJ and producer. Just a week after his arriving in the city, having only just graduated from high school, Seth found himself booked to play infamous Panorama Bar alongside Omar-S. He flourished in the permissive German city, and was soon resident at Club der Visionäre, as well as playing regularly at clubs all over world like fabric (London), Watergate (Berlin), Output (New York), Warung (Brazil), Womb (Tokyo), Tenax (Florence), Robert Johnson (Frankfurt), The Rex (Paris), Fuse (Brussels), The Electric Pickle (Miami), plus festivals like The Detroit Electronic Music Festival, Glastonbury, Coachella, Sonar and Burning Man. Meanwhile, in the studio he has collaborated with such dance luminaries as Matthew Dear, Art Department, Tiefschwarz, Deetron, dOP and Subb-an in addition to groundbreaking remix work done as Visionquest, who have remixed tracks by Tracy Thorn and David Lynch (yes him). Together their Visionquest project has spawned one of the most exciting techno labels of recent years, plus a multi-deck DJ spectacular that saw the four of them rolling out their Visionquest Thirteen world tour throughout the whole of 2013. The combination of these achievements, alongside constant touring, have resulted in Seth being voted number three, then two and then one in the Resident Advisor Top 100 DJs poll between 2009-2012, and since then he has consistently remained within the top 5 DJs as voted by Resident Advisor fans.

    Last year, Seth consolidated his position at the top of the DJ ladder through his ‘Seth Troxler Goes Clubbing’ concept, returning to those nightclubs that were integral in moulding him into the DJ he is today: with quarterly appearances at fabric (London), Trouw (Amsterdam), Output (New York) and his usual 10 week residency at Circo Loco across the summer. He also began a new project with The Martinez Brothers – Tuskegee – aimed at shining a light on Afro-Latino American dance culture, as well as launching two other record labels: the dance floor focused ‘Play It Say It’, and indie rock label ‘Soft Touch’. The year also saw Seth return to the studio: the Tuskegee label was launched in true analogue style with a raw collaboration between Seth and The Martinez Brothers, titled ‘Space & Time’. Since then Troxler has also teamed up with production partner Phil Moffa for a release ‘Rogue Music EP’ out on Hypercolour at the beginning of the new year, as well as finishing a number of solo productions to be released throughout 2015.

    This coming year will see Seth expanding his Tuskegee brand with The Martinez Brothers, taking it beyond the confines of club culture and into the wider populace, with the aim of introducing the kids of ethnic backgrounds to a world that they may not have thought existed. Simultaneously, the Tuskegee crew will be touring with a number of shows at various venues across the world. In spring, the JESuS concept will come to life: an experiment perfectly in tune with the dance music zeitgeist, JESuS is the summation of four of the biggest players in the contemporary DJ world: Jackmaster, Eats Everything, Skream und Seth Troxler. Kicking things of with four dates in the USA sandwiched between the Coachella weekends, and following up with a six date bus tour through the heart of Europe. Coupled with innovative video documentation of both legs of the tour, JESuS looks set to be the most unique clubbing experience of 2015. In addition to these two mammoth projects (as well as the usual list of DNA club shows and summer festival appearances) Seth also has plans to expand his Smokey Tails restaurant brand and open a new venture – Disco Dogs – which will be selling traditional all-American hot dogs from within the heart Old Street roundabout in London.

    Chuck-D-800x500

    Chuck D

    American rapper, author and producer.

    Co-founder of the legendary rap group Public Enemy.

    Voted one of the top 50 greatest lyricists of all time.

    David-Lynch-800x500

    David Lynch

    Steve-Aoki-Rectangle-800x500

    Steve Aoki

  • Russell-Simmons-800x500

    Russell Simmons

    Jake-Udell-800x500

    Jake Udell

    Owner of boutique management company The Th3rd Brain.

    Artist manager and brains behind the fast rise of Krewella and ZHU.

    Marketing genius and one of the youngest entrepreneurs in electronic music.

    Lyor-Cohen-800x500

    Lyor Cohen

    Pioneering American record label exec and co-founder of Def Jam Records.

    Owner of Google backed 300 Entertainment.

    Chairman/CEO of Warner Music Group Record

    Jason-Strauss-800x500

    Jason Strauss

    Partner of TAO Group, the masterminds of Marquee, TAO, Avenue and LAVO.

    Jason and his partners operate 6 of the top 16 highest grossing nightclubs in the country.

    Transformed Las Vegas into a driving force of EDM clubbing in the U.S.

    Stuart-Price-800x500

    Stuart Price

    British electronic musician, songwriter, and record producer

    Acclaimed for work with Madonna, The Killers, and Pet Shop Boys

    Three-time Grammy award winner

    Kaskade-800x500

    Kaskade

    Long regarded as one of America’s top DJs and producers

    Numerous works top charted on Billboard

    Two-time Grammy nominated artists

  • David-Grutman-800x500

    David Grutman

    CEO of MMG Nightlife, an SFX Entertainment Company.

    Ranked #11 in Rolling Stone’s “50 Most Important People in EDM” 2014.

    Managing Partner in Miami’s top rated venues LIV Nightclub and Story.