Above: Universal Music Group chairman Lucian Grainge (left) and Sony Music chief creative officer Clive Davis (Photo credit: Phil McCarten)
Billboard honored Universal Music Group chairman Lucian Grainge and Sony Music chief creative officer Clive Davis Thursday evening at an event in Los Angeles to unveil the second annual Billboard Power 100 list.
With more than a quarter of the executives on the list in attendance, Grainge was honored for his position at No. 1 and Davis was honored with the first Billboard Musical Visionary Award. Henceforth, the award will be known as the Billboard Clive Davis Award. A year after inaugurating the Power 100, Billboard published the Power 100 list during Grammy week in conjunction with new efforts connected with the Record Academy.
“It’s incredibly rewarding to come together with NARAS and to evolve and grow with the record industry,” Billboard publisher Tommy Page said at a reception held at the Redbury Hotel in Hollywood. “We will continue to invest in the music business.”
Grainge said he has spent 34 years in the business and he is “very pleased and humbled” by the No. 1 honor. “We’ve always invested in music. We will always invest in music, taking risks and trying to move forward. Our future looks like it has more opportunities than threats we’ve endured in past. Technology and innovation continue to give us an amazing opportunity.”
The event at the Redbury attracted a who’s who of the music business, from Sony/ATV Music Publishing CEO Martin Bandier to Creative Artists Agency managing partner/music head Rob Light to Glassnote owner Daniel Glass and Big Machine Label Group president/CEO Scott Borchetta. The event was as much social as it was business, as Light and iconic manager Irving Azoff were discussing golf, Sony/ATV co-president Jody Gerson and Sony Pictures president of worldwide music Lia Vollack were discussing Grammy week party plans, and Universal Music Nashville chairman/CEO Mike Dungan and Borchetta gathered in a room with a pool table.
Left to right: Republic Record's Monte Lipman, iconic manager Irving Azoff, Billboard's Aki Kaneko and Greenberg Traurig's Joel Katz (Photo: Phil McCarten)
At one point, Billboard editorial director Bill Werde, who emceed the evening, broke down the number of requests he received while the Power 100 list was being assembled.
-- 271 lobbying emails
-- 9 requests to not be included on the list
-- 4 really good bottles of wine
-- 3 messages through Guggenheim employees
-- 2 mandates regarding the particular positions on the list
-- And 1 suggestion that he would need a new boss
In all seriousness, Werde said, “there’s a new energy in this business. It’s fun again, it’s sexy again. If I pick any quarter of this room and the people decided this is where the new music business should be, then that’s where the new music business would be.” Werde added that one of the highlights of his career was being able to be able to sit in Davis’ office, read his memoirs, and share his thoughts on certain chapters in the music legend’s upcoming autobiography.
After receiving the award, Davis said he was “touched by the event and the award.” In accepting it, Davis said, “I look around and I see so many of you who grew up motivated by music at an early age. I never thought that music would be my profession. It was a quirk of fate and good luck that I got into music unwittingly.”
Sony Music's Clive Davis and Billboard publisher Tommy Page (Photo: Arnold Turner)
Other music industry in attendance, included: Kobalt Music Group founder/CEO Willard Ahdritz; BET chairman/CEO Debra Lee; Republic Records chairman/CEO Monte Lipman; Recording Academy president/CEO Neil Portnow; Spotify's Daniel Ek; Citi's Jennifer Breithaupt; “American Idol” executive producer Nigel Lythgoe; Guggenheim Digital Media CEO Ross Levinsohn; Loeb & Loeb partner/chairman emeritus John Frankenheimer; Joel Katz, chairman of the media, entertainment and media group at Greenberg Traurig.
Click here to see more photos from the Billboard Power 100 event on Feb. 7.