×

Songza Co-Founders Have Left YouTube Music Ahead of Google Play Music Shut-Down

The three co-founders of Songza, a music curation startup acquired by Google in  2014, have left YouTube Music, Variety has learned. Former Songza CEO Elias Roman, former chief product officer Elliott Breece and former chief operating officer Peter Asbill all quietly transitioned to new positions at Google’s startup incubator Area 120 in March.

A YouTube Music spokesperson confirmed the departure, but said that the YouTube Music team was otherwise intact, with T. Jay Fowler continuing to lead product for Google’s music service.

Roman, Asbill and Breece all joined Google when the company acquired Songza in July of 2014. Following the acquisition, they all worked on Google Play Music, bringing curation and other features that Songza was known for to the service.

More recently, the trio had been working on YouTube Music, where Roman served as the lead product manager. Google plans to eventually replace Google Play Music with YouTube Music, but hasn’t announced any timing for this transition. The company has said that it would give Google Play Music subscribers the time and tools they need to move their collections to YouTube Music once the transition date is officially announced.

In anticipation of the shut-down, Google already shuttered the Google Play artist hub at the end of April. The artist hub had allowed independent musicians to directly upload their tracks to Google Play Music and the Play Store.

At Area 120, the three co-founders are apparently working on something completely unrelated to music, with Roman stating on Linkedin that their new project was focused on “building products to increase financial security for low income households in American cities.

More Digital

  • BTS World

    BTS World Mobile Game From K-Pop Group Rockets to No. 1 Spot on App Charts Worldwide

    BTS, the biggest K-pop group in the world, now has the biggest app in the world. “BTS World,” a mobile simulation game that lets fans virtually become the South Korean pop stars’ manager, quickly rose to the top of Apple’s App Store charts in multiple countries just hours after its release on Wednesday, June 26. [...]

  • Discovery Names Andrew Georgiou Eurosport and

    Discovery Taps Andrew Georgiou as Eurosport and Sports Rights Boss

    Andrew Georgiou has been appointed president of Discovery-owned Eurosport. The sports channels and streaming service has been without a chief since Peter Hutton left for Facebook. Georgiou assumes a wider role than Hutton, running Eurosport as well as overseeing sports rights and marketing across Discovery. It has been moving aggressively into the sports sector, licensing [...]

  • Can a Studio Make Movies for

    Listen: Can a Studio Make Movies for VR?

    STX Entertainment is best known for movies like “The Upside” and “Ugly Dolls,” but it also has a division dedicated to creating virtual-reality movies like the recent action short “The Limit.” STXsurreal is working on over a dozen films in a variety of genres, according to its founders, Rick Rey (pictured, right) and Andy Vick. [...]

  • Kathryn Friedrich

    Condé Nast Entertainment Taps Ex-RYOT Studio Head Kathryn Friedrich for New Role

    Condé Nast Entertainment hired Kathryn Friedrich, a YouTube and Google alum who most recently headed Verizon’s RYOT Studio, to the newly created role of EVP, operations and general manager. Friedrich started in the new gig this week, reporting to Condé Nast Entertainment president Oren Katzeff, who joined the company last year from Tastemade. Based in [...]

  • NRA TV

    NRA Scuttles Original Production for Streaming-Video Site

    The NRA will shut down production of new content for its streaming-video NRATV outlet, The New York Times reports. The report said the gun-rights lobbying organization may continue to run older content on the broadband outlet, but it will no longer feature Dana Loesch and other regular hosts in live programming. The demise of programming [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content