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Music Think Tank Authors:

Who owns Music Think Tank?


Andrew Dubber - New Music Strategies
Andrew is an AHRC Knowledge Transfer Fellow and Senior Lecturer in Music Industries at Birmingham City University, and is a researcher in online music. He is an author, speaker, and consultant in the area of online music entrepreneurship. He also blogs about the music industries online at New Music Strategies.


Bruce Warila - Entrepreneur (music industry).  Click here to find out more.


Derek Sivers - CD Baby
Derek Sivers is founder, president, and programmer of CD Baby and HostBaby. A professional musician since 1987, Derek started CD Baby by accident in 1998, when he was selling his own CD on his website, and offered to let his fellow musicians use his service, too. As this hobby grew, he refused all investors and advertising, choosing to grow slowly and quietly during the dot-com boom and bust. Now CD Baby is the largest seller of independent CDs on the web, with over $60M in sales for over 200,000 musician clients.


Ariel Hyatt - CyberPR
Ariel Hyatt is the founder of Ariel Publicity & Cyber PR a New York based digital firm that connects artists to blogs, podcasts, Internet radio stations and social media sites. Over the past 13 years her firm has represented over 1,450 musicians of all genres.

Teaching and educating musicians is her passion and her philosophy is: combine social networking with Internet marketing to help artists grow their fanbases and increase their income. Her book “Music Success in Nine Weeks” helps artists focus on these strategies.

Several times a year, she leads sold-out workshops to musicians and music industry professionals looking to learn about Social Media and marketing. Her bi-weekly ezine and YouTube series “Sound Advice” has over 10,000 musicians and music professionals as subscribers and the list is steadily growing. Ariel has spoken at countless music conferences over the years including SXSW2009, FMC, ECMAs & OCFF (Canada), A2A (Amsterdam),CMJ, BMI Music Panel Series, and NARAS.


Mark Ramsey - Mercury Radio Research & hear2.0
Mark Ramsey is president of Mercury Radio Research, a major radio industry research and consulting firm and hear2.0, a trend-deciphering blog and new media strategy company with an audio emphasis. Mark is a trusted partner to many radio industry and allied firms. Clients have ranged from CBS to Bonneville Broadcasting, from XM to Sirius, from EA Games to


Jed Carlson - ReverbNation
Jed is Co-Founder and COO of ReverbNation. ReverbNation provides cross-platform Fan Relationship Management solutions to over 170,000 musicians, managers, labels and venues worldwide. Jed is also the inventor of Band Equity(TM), which is a unique and powerful system for tracking the value of an artist’s brand across all medias and social networks. Jed holds undergraduate degrees from Bowdoin College and an MBA from Duke University.


Steve Lawson - Bass Guitarist, Journalist, Teacher
Steve is the UK’s leading solo bass guitarist and has been releasing music on his own Pillow Mountain Records label for 9 years. As a journalist he was a main features writer for Bassist Magazine, and has also written for Guitarist, Total Guitar, Bass Player, The Independent on Sunday and a number of other music titles. An accomplished teacher, Steve teaches privately and lectures in Universities on Musics and Musicians and Social Media, advising students on how to manage their online interaction with their audience. He lives in London, and blogs at


Jonas Woost -
Jonas joined as the Head of Music in 2005 after working for different independent record labels including PIAS and Ministry of Sound. He is producing a weekly radio show called ‘heute:pop:morgen’ which is broadcast on Tide 96.0FM in Hamburg and he blogs at


Celia Hirschman
Celia Hirschman oversees a wide scope of music business. With 29 years experience behind her, she runs the marketing company she founded, Downtown Marketing. Ms. Hirschman also runs the UK based independent label, One Little Indian, in North America, overseeing the marketing for such artists as Bjork, The Twilight Singers, Pieta Brown, Lloyd Cole and others.

In addition, Ms. Hirschman is a weekly commentator on Los Angeles NPR station KCRW, speaking on issues affecting the music business. Her show, “On The Beat” airs at 4:44 on Wednesdays, right in the middle of NPR’s, “All Things Considered”. “On The Beat” is podcast around the world, via KCRW, Itunes, and many other nationally known outlets. Ms. Hirschman also serves as guest host for KCRW’s half hour radio show, “The Politics of Culture” as well as a guest commentator on the National radio show, “Marketplace”, and XM’sMusician’s Radio”.


Craig Hamilton - Friends of the Stars
Craig is a musician, songwriter, singer and one part of Friends of the Stars - a country/folk band from Birmingham, UK. They release their records (and those of others) online. Craig also provides online music business assistance to record labels and musicians on a consultancy basis.


Dave Allen -
Dave Allen is a founding member of post-punk band, Gang of Four. He lives in Portland, Oregon where he works as Director, Insights & Digital Media for Nemo Design, an integrated brand, marketing and interactive firm. He is the main contributor and editor of the music and mp3 web site, and runs Nemo’s social media blog, Allen has been a strong proponent of the online distribution of music for the last 15 years while working at companies such as and Intel on Internet music strategies. Dave can be found at


Bob Baker - Indie Music Promotion
Bob is an author and indie musician (and now Berklee Music online faculty member) dedicated to showing musicians of all kinds how to get exposure, connect with fans, make more money, and empower themselves. His books include the “Guerrilla Music Marketing Handbook” and many others. He publishes a blog, ezine, podcast and video clips at


Rhodri Marsden - The Independent
Having managed Pere Ubu, Laibach, Spearmint, The Band Of Holy Joy and others, and arranged tours of Eastern Europe for acts including Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Smashing Pumpkins and Motorhead, Rhodri became the technology columnist for The Independent after they rang him and asked if he knew what an MP3 was. Shortly afterwards he joined Scritti Politti after bumping into Green Gartside in a London pub, who asked if Rhodri knew anyone who played keyboards. Last year The Independent challenged Rhodri to “become a popstar on the internet in 30 days”, and write it up over several thousand words for their cover story. He lost a load of money, got 1/4 million views on YouTube and obviously failed to become a popstar.


Laurence Trifon - Indie Musician
Laurence is one half of the electronic music group Trifonic. Before Trifonic became a full-time operation in 2007, Laurence worked as an economic analyst for several years after graduating from Stanford University. He currently lives in San Francisco, CA.


Syd Schwartz - Capitol Records
Syd Schwartz is Senior Vice President, Digital Strategy for the Capitol Music Group (Capitol & Virgin Records). An 18 year veteran of the music industry who has learned the business from the cash register on up, he remains a music and technology junkie and occasionally finds time to blog at Jazz Odyssey. He is also involved with the Mockingbird Foundation, a non-profit organization that raises funds to support music education for children.


Marco Raaphorst - Melodiefabriek
Marco is a public speaker, consultant, musician, Creative Commons advocate and promoter of free music on his personal blog (Dutch language site). He was a winner of the Dutch bloggies in 2007 and is nominated again in 2008. His professional site, Melodiefabriek is in English.


Keith Jopling

Keith is a freelance strategy & business development consultant working in music & media, implementing projects for record companies and digital media businesses. He works both independently and in partnership with other consultancies on music related projects including MusicAlly, Cap Gemini and Ingenious.

Since January 2007 he has undertaken consulting projects for Nokia, Sony Music, EMI, Live Nation, IFPI, MCPS-PRS, AIM and CISAC. He continuously works with small, innovative music companies on strategy and investment opportunities, most recently From The Basement TV.

In July 2008 Keith launched his Juggernaut Brew blog with the aim of voicing a deeper analytical view of current and age-old music industry issues. Keith was Director, Strategic Analysis & Research, IFPI from 2000 to 2006. He was responsible for IFPI’s highly respected music industry publications and implementing a strategic advisory service to music and digital companies.


Brian Hazard - Passive Promotion
Brian began releasing electronic pop records under the name Color Theory in 1994, after graduating with a degree in Piano Performance from California State University, Long Beach. Fifteen years and seven albums later, he still handles everything from songwriting to marketing. His efforts have recently borne fruit; a song from his latest album was named Grand Prize Winner in the John Lennon Songwriting Contest, another took the top spot in the electronic category at in January, and Color Theory was nominated for Best Electronic in the 2009 Orange County Music Awards. His Passive Promotion blog emphasizes “set it and forget it” methods of music promotion. Brian is also the head mastering engineer and owner of Resonance Mastering in Huntington Beach, California.


Bruce Houghton - Hypebot
Bruce Houghton blogs daily about the new music industry and tech at He is also the founder and president of booking agency Skyline Music. His Skyline Consultancy serves music industry & technology companies including Bandzoogle and Band Metrics where he also serves on the Advisory Board. (While Bruce is selective, you don’t have to have “band” in your company name to be a consulting client). He also serves on the rather grandly named Visionary Committee of MidemNet


Lucas Gonze -
Lucas Gonze is working on He founded Webjay, was the lead author of XSPF, created Yahoo! Media Player, was a Director of Product Management at Yahoo! Music, helped found CC Mixter and has contributed to numerous open-source projects. For more information click here .


Shelley Stein-Sacks
With more than 30 years experience in executive positions in the music industry, Shelley Stein-Sacks has a vast knowledge and in-depth understanding of the Canadian music industry. The recent author of The Canadian Independent Music Industry: An Examination of Distribution and Access and The Business of Music: A National Training Strategy for Business Skills in the Music Industry. Shelley has also developed and is delivering a full semester credit course on Marketing, Social Networks, and CyberMarketing for the Music Industry at the Schulich School of Music at McGill University. Through Brock + Chaloux Group Inc. Shelley provides strategic planning and counseling to various public and private sector clients on cultural and business issues as well as serving as a business coach to up and coming musicians.