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Music News (07/03/24)

[ 0 ] July 3, 2024 | |

Jody Williams Named CMHOFM Board Of Officers & Trustees Chair

Jody Williams. Photo: John Paul Bruno

Veteran publishing executive Jody Williams was recently named the new Chair of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s Board of Officers & Trustees. He will serve a one-year term.

The Jody Williams Songs (JWS) Founder has served on the museum’s Board for 17 years, including in a leadership role as a trustee since 2011. He has also chaired the Board’s Development Committee for the past decade, serving as a collaborator and entertainment producer for fundraising initiatives in support of the museum’s educational mission.

“Jody is woven into the fabric of country music’s creative community in a true and meaningful way,” says Kyle Young, CEO of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. “He is not only a respected executive and passionate supporter of our museum and its mission, but he’s also resolute in furthering country music’s vitality as a cultural artform. We look forward to his guidance and insights as we continue our work preserving this history and educating audiences on its importance.”

Entertainment business leader Mary Ann McCready has completed three years of service as the museum’s Board Chair. She will remain committed to the Board as an elected trustee, serving a three-year term. The Flood, Bumstead, McCready & McCarthy (FBMM) Co-Founder has played a key role in expanding the museum’s education and fundraising initiatives, including record-setting “All For The Hall” concerts led by Keith Urban and Blake Shelton. McCready has served on the Board since 2006 and will continue as its Investment Committee Chair.

Additionally, the new-elected officers include Sara Finley, Becky GardenhireClint Higham and Cindy Mabe. Returning trustees consist of Mark Bloom, David Conrad, Bill Denny and David Ross.


Relative Music Group & Sony Music Publishing Partner To Sign Kyle Clark

Pictured (L–R, back row): Sony Music Publishing’s Rusty Gaston and Relative Music Group’s Caroline Clark; (L–R, front row): Relative Music Group’s Dennis Matkosky, Michael Hardy, Kyle Clark and Relative Music Group’s Jesse Matkosky. Photo: Caylee Robillard

Relative Music Group has signed singer-songwriter and producer Kyle Clark in partnership with Sony Music Publishing.

The 26-year-old was born in Honolulu, Hawaii and raised in Jefferson, Georgia. After winning a song competition through a radio station in Atlanta two years in row, Clark’s original songs caught the attention of award-winning songwriter Jordan Schmidt and his brother, Dane. Their relationship with Clark eventually led him to his first publishing deal in 2019.

Within his first year living and writing in Nashville, he co-wrote Lily Rose’s Gold-certified single “Villain.” As the global pandemic impacted in-person writing sessions, Clark began to focus on learning how to produce music, leaning on Schmidt and his roommate, producer Jacob Durrett, to soak up every bit of knowledge he could. He has since landed cuts with Jon Pardi, Mitchell Tenpenny, Chayce Beckham, Mackenzie Carpenter, Erin Kinsey, Restless Road and more.

In 2022, a video of Clark performing his own tune, “Hope It’s Hot Out,” gained traction on TikTok. The song was released on May 27 that same year, and earned a million streams during its first week. Since then, “Hope It’s Hot Out” has amassed more than 35 million streams. The creator is currently in partnership with WME and Stem, and has continued to release music independently.


Austin Michael Inks With Warner Chappell Music & Rafter 3 Music

Pictured (L–R): L3/Rafter 3’s Peter Hartung, Warner Chappell’s Benji Amaefule, Austin Michael, Warner Chappell’s Ben Vaughn, L3/Rafter 3’s Cody Villalobos and Joey Gonzalez

Austin Michael has signed a global publishing deal with Warner Chappell Music and Rafter 3 Music, the new publishing arm of L3 Entertainment.

Growing up on a ranch in Van Alstyne, Texas, Michael learned at an early age to rope, ride, hunt and fish. Rodeo life seemed to be in the stars for the Texas native, but at 15, he wound up on Luke Bryan’s shoulders roping Katy Perry on American Idol. It became one of the most viral videos of the competition series’ 2019 season, and the feedback on his vocal ability was the turning point for Michael as he started pursuing a career as an artist.

He has spent the last five years polishing his songwriting and guitar skills, driving to Nashville, sleeping in his car and knocking on every door for an opportunity. With relentless perseverance, Michael aims to further launch his career, continue to release new music and grow partnerships.

“I couldn’t be more excited to work with Austin and his team at this exciting time in his career,” says Benji Amaefule, Manager, A&R, Warner Chappell Music Nashville. “His talent level is off the charts, and he is already writing songs that will be the soundtrack to fans around the country.”

“We’re very excited to have Austin join the Warner Chappell team of fantastic writers and administrators,” shares Peter Hartung, President, L3 Entertainment/Rafter 3 Music. “It’s a great songwriting home for Austin as he embarks on what promises to be a great career in country music!”

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