Katy Perry, Halsey, Niall Horan and Quavo were among the Capitol Music Group artists to appear at the Capitol Congress in Hollywood today (Aug. 7). The sixth annual confab, held at the Arclight Theater, brings together executives, artists and partners to present the company’s slate of projects and initiatives. The 2019 edition was programmed by CMG COO Michelle Jubelirer.
On Perry’s plate is a new single called “Small Talk,” which executives believe it destined to be another massive hit for the singer. She premiered a lyric video for the song, which drops to radio and all streaming services at midnight EDT on August 8, 2019.
CMG EVP Global Artist Marketing & Commerce, Robbie McIntosh and EVP, Head of Media, Strategy and Relations Ambrosia Healy presented Perry with a plaque commemorating 100 million RIAA song certifications, one of only five artists in history to have topped the milestone with digital singles, and the first-ever Capitol Records artist to do so.
Horan was up first at the top of the Congress. “I’m Lewis Capaldi’s friend, that’s how I’m known these days,” Horan cracked. “I haven’t performed in over a year so I’m shitting [right now],” he added. “Put a Little Love On Me,” written by Horan, Jamie Scott, Mike Needle and Dan Bryer, and produced by Greg Kurstin, who joined Horan on piano for another song called “Nice to Meet Ya.” “Put a Little Love” is slated for release in September.
Other performers included BJ the Chicago Kid, who brought down the house with the song “Time Today” from his new album, “1123.” Artists interviewed on the Capitol Congress stage included filmmaker Melina Matsoukas (pictured below, at right, with Motown president Ethiopia Habtemariam), who spoke of her forthcoming movie “Queen & Slim”; Vince Staples, who signed to Motown Records via the Blacksmith Recordings label and was interviewed by Jemele Hill for a live taping of her podcast, “Jemele Hill Is Unbothered”; Lil Baby, who received a plaque certifying 9 billion global streams of his songs to date; and Halsey, who participated in an insightful and witty Q&A with author and journalist Lizzy Goodman.
Also on the agenda: an announced partnership with SM Entertainment, the top music label in Korea, which Caroline President Jacqueline Saturn announced. Among the first acts to roll out are K-pop supergroup, Super M, whose seven members are drawn from some of the most successful K-pop groups and solo artists in the world, including Taemin from SHINee, EXO’s Baekhyun and Kai, NCT 127’s Taeyong and Mark, and Lucas and Ten of Chinese band WayV. SuperM will make its U.S. debut in October. The group NCT 127 was in attendance to thank CMG staffers for their efforts.
Legends stopped by as well. Last year, it was Paul McCartney and this year, it was Berry Gordy who was honored with the Capitol Icon award ahead of the Showtime premiere of “Hitsville USA,” the definitive story of Motown, which turned 60 this year. “In celebrating your amazing success, the world will also always recognize the historical role you and your company played in transcending racial and social barriers to unite people all over the world through music,” read the inscription, which was presented to Gordy by CMG chairman Steve Barnett (pictured at top, with Perry).
Elsewhere on the visual media front, it was announced that Migos’ Quavo, CMG’s Brian Nolan Quality Control’s CEO Pierre “Pee Thomas and COO Kevin “Coach K” Lee, Marginal Mediaworks CEO & founder Sanjay Sharma and Imagine Kids+Family president Stephanie Sperber have partnered to develop a new animated franchise series for children rooted in hip hop and the Atlanta music scene. The series will be executive produced by Imagine Entertainment chairman Brian Grazer, Sharma, Sperber and Quavo.
Said Quavo, who counts himself a fan of movies like “8 Mile” and “The Nutty Professor” (both Grazer-produced): “I have long seen how hip hop, as well as [ Migos’] music really impacts kids. I’ve loved animation my whole life whether on TV or in movies and I wanted my first jump into this premium content world to be a show just for kids. It will definitely reflect the creativity, love and families in and around the NAWF side of Atlanta where we grew up.”
Alliances with Bose AR and ESPN Sports were also revealed before the day’s headliner, Halsey, took a seat. During her talk, the singer revealed that she’s nearly done with a new album, recently quit smoking, and has lost touch with new social media platforms like Tik-Tok. “Tumblr was my bitch,” Halsey cracked. “I had that sh– on lock.”