Alejandro Duque has been named president of Warner Music Latin America, joining the company in August and taking up his new role at the start of October, succeeding Iñigo Zabala, who it has previously been reported is stepping down from his role as President of Latin America and Iberia after working for Warner Music for more than 30 years. Zabala will continue working with Warner Music as an advisor.
Duque joins Warner Music from Universal Music, where he began his professional career in 2005 and most recently served as Managing Director of Universal Music Latin. He will be based in Miami and report to Simon Robson, President, International, Recorded Music, Warner Music Group. Guillermo Gonzalez, President of Warner Music Iberia, will report directly to Simon Robson after Zabala steps down.
Duque said, “The incredible music coming out of Latin America continues to seize the imaginations of fans around the world. I want to do more to support talent from our region and help our artists claim their rightful place on the global stage.”
Robson added, “I’m looking forward to welcoming Alejandro to Warner Music. He has extensive experience working around the region and has helped drive our industry’s digital transformation. Alejandro also has a fantastic reputation as an innovative leader who always puts his artists’ needs first.
“I’d also like to thank Iñigo for all his service over the years. He’s an incredible exec who has made a huge impact both on our company and the wider Latam music business, and he’s signed and developed some of the biggest and most important Latin artists of all time. I’m delighted that he’ll continue to work very closely with us.”
+ Just a day after the Foo Fighters heralded the return to concerts at Madison Square Garden, MSG Entertainment announced that Randy Fibiger has been promoted to Senior Vice President, Bookings and that Josephine Vaccarello has been named Senior Vice President, MSG Live & Business Operations. According to the announcement, these newly created roles will “ensure that all live entertainment bookings are streamlined” across MSG Entertainment’s portfolio of venues: Madison Square Garden, Radio City Music Hall, Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden, the Beacon Theatre and The Chicago Theatre. Both Fibiger and Vaccarello will continue to report to Darren Pfeffer, Executive Vice President, Live, MSG Entertainment.
Fibiger will oversee all concert bookings across MSG Entertainment’s portfolio of venues and for Boston Calling. He will directly book Madison Square Garden, while supervising the bookings team focused on relationship building with artists, managers, agents and promoters. Vaccarello will now oversee the strategy and business operations for the ;ive business, while continuing to be responsible for family entertainment and performing arts, venue tours and special events.
“In elevating and expanding these two key roles within Live, we are ensuring that we are able to serve the industry and our fans in the best way possible,” said Pfeffer. “Josephine and Randy are instrumental to our live entertainment business. Their relationships within the industry and expertise across all areas make them integral in leading our business operations and bookings groups, respectively, ensuring MSG Entertainment continues to raise the bar in creating exceptional moments for artists and fans alike.”
+ QC Sports — a subsidiary of the powerhouse that also includes Migos, Lil Yachty and Lil Baby’s label home Quality Control Music, has announced the addition of NFL industry veteran Brad Cicala as Managing Partner of their newly launched football division. QC acquired Cicala’s company Terra Firma Sports Management in the agreement. Cicala adds a career of nearly 20 years of NFL experience to the QC Sports enterprise. He brings with him a roster of clients for both on and off the field representation that includes Pierre Garcon, Diontae Johnson, DeSean Jackson, Malcolm Smith, and John Ross III, among others.
Cicala said, “What excited me about working with QC is the synergy in conducting business on par with Fortune 500 companies while still adhering to a family structure. Our goals aligned over the past decade with both parties helping young Black men and women transcend entertainment and sports into business, tech, gaming and ultimately a path towards real ownership with entrepreneurial spirit.”
QC CEO Pierre “P” Thomas said, “We are excited to have Brad on board because we’re here to build a global sports business and he’s a proven veteran with experience and a rich history of negotiating strong contracts for his clients. He believes in hard work, family and growing beyond any limits, which are principles we have built QC on.”
+ The Recording Academy and Ebony have announced a partnership to commemorate Black Music Month. In addition to the partnership, a six-part podcast series, “Recording Academy x EBONY: Black Music Collective Podcast,” hosted by two-time Grammy nominee MC Lyte, will premiere Thursday, June 24 at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT and follow every Thursday for six weeks. The series will include various members of the Recording Academy’s Black Music Collective. Confirmed participants and BMC members include four-time GRAMMY Award winner Yolanda Adams, General Counsel and EVP of Business & Legal Affairs for Universal Music Group Jeff Harleston, four-time GRAMMY winner H.E.R., five-time GRAMMY winners Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, former Chair and CEO, BET Networks Debra Lee, and GRAMMY Award winner Ledisi.
+ Joss Stone has signed with ICM Partners for worldwide representation. The signing expands the UK soul singer and songwriter’s relationship with the agency, whose concerts division previously represented her in North and South America only. Stone recently debuted her first solo single in three years, “Walk With Me,” is set to release her eighth studio album this fall, produced by Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart, and she is also making the leap to the big screen with her first voice role. Stone stars opposite Edward Norton in the animated film “Paper Birds Pt. 2.”
+ Michelle Edgar is joining LiveXLive Media as head of strategic partnerships where she will work on artist and label relations in addition to liaising with consumer brands and creating partnership opportunities. LiveXLive is a global platform for livestream and on-demand audio, video, and podcast/vodcast content in music, comedy and pop culture. It owns PodcastOne and Slacker Radio, among other properties.
Said Robert Ellin, chairman and CEO of LiveXLive: “We are thrilled to welcome Michelle to LiveXLive. Her experiences and relationships are deep with talent and brands, having earned her the reputation as one of the most innovative and creative dealmakers. In addition to her accomplishments in brand marketing and partnerships, Michelle has a track record and passion for leading programs in social change, focusing on female leadership and education. Michelle, with her professional and personal passions will be a tremendous addition to our management team.”
Edgar, who previously worked at Epic Records, ICM Partners, and Warner Bros., is the founder and CEO of The XX Project, which aims to cultivate personal and professional growth to empower women in business, and has curated and produced over 200 events over the last 10 years.
+ Elsewhere in LiveXLive news, Matt Pinfield will host the Weekly Rock Countdown with Matt Pinfield, starting today. The show counts down the top 40 Rock songs across the LiveXLive service based on user engagement metrics such as plays, “hearts,” “skips,” “shares,” and “bans.”
Said Pinfield: “I’ve had great experiences hosting several streaming events with my good friends at LiveXLive over the last three years. My ultimate favorite, when I zip-lined across a crowd of 150,000 music fans while hosting seven straight nights of concerts for the international broadcast of the Rock in Rio Festival! I am excited to relaunch the new LiveXLive Weekly Rock Countdown.”