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Faires tunes in Lionsgate

Music unit prexy inks four-year deal

Jay Faires, who has run Lionsgate’s music and publishing unit since 2005, has inked a four-year deal formalizing his position as prexy of the division.

Faires oversees music supervision and organization of existing catalogs, and he works to use music in promotion and exploitation of Lionsgate’s film projects. Faires and his team handle music for the company’s film production and acquisition slate, television, theatrical marketing, homevideo and international.

The founder of Mammoth Records joined Lionsgate in 2004 as a music consultant. He was appointed president of music and publishing the next year, but the new deal is his first with the company.

Faires has overhauled Lionsgate’s music division and built the company infrastructure with agreements with RED Distribution for soundtracks, the Orchard for digital marketing and distribution of soundtracks and scores and Fintage Music for music subpublishing outside North America.

“It’s a nimble and aggressive company,” Faires told Daily Variety. “So it’s not just about getting John Legend to do a song over the ‘Pride’ end credits, in which we share the co-publishing. Artists, record labels and publishers are seeing the benefit of working with us, and we’re creating opportunities for ourselves.”

Faires has been pushing Lionsgate toward TV, film and commercial projects that involve major music talent and music that produces revenue for the company. At the time he joined Lionsgate, the music division was one person; the staff is now at 10 and expected to continue growing.

“He has made music publishing and licensing a dynamic and lucrative force within the company while bringing great music to all our projects,” Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer and vice chairman Michael Burns said in a joint statement. “As technology continues to change the way music gets to listeners, Jay’s expertise will ensure that Lionsgate remains ahead of the curve in terms of reaching end users.”

Lionsgate said its current 16 films and 10 television shows represent a pipeline that averages more than 1,000 total synchs yearly. Recent notable projects have included “In the Deep” from Lionsgate’s “Crash” and multiple recordings of the opening theme to “Weeds,” Malvina Reynolds’ “Little Boxes.” Faires has been bringing musical talent to “Wildfire” on ABC Family Channel and developing music marketing cross-promotions for “Akeelah and the Bee” and “Employee of the Month.”

He oversaw music for “Pride,” “Rogue” and “Good Luck Chuck.” He is music supervisor for Lionsgate’s “Bug,” which will feature new songs by Scott Weiland, Chris Cornell and System of a Down’s Serj Tankian.

Faires launched Mammoth Records in 1988 out of his North Carolina apartment, inking Squirrel Nut Zippers, Juliana Hatfield, Victoria Williams, Joe Henry and Jason and the Scorchers. He also created the lifestyle marketing company Hi Frequency Marketing.

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