Billboard Announces Panelists, Award Winners & First Slate of Speakers for 2018 Live Music Summit

John Mayer will be honored with Billboard's Legend of Live Award and Shawn Mendes will accept inaugural Artist of the Year Award.

Billboard, the world's largest voice in music, on Tuesday (Sept. 18) announced its first slate of speakers, panelists and award winners for this year’s Billboard Live Music Summit and Awards, formerly known as the Billboard Touring Conference and Awards. The annual event, set to take place on Nov. 13-14 at the Montage in Beverly Hills, California, brings together live music’s top industry insiders, power players and artists for a 360-degree look at the challenges and opportunities facing the industry. 

On the evening of Nov. 13, John Mayer will accept the annual Legend of Live Award at the Billboard Live Music Awards. The night’s highest honor will celebrate Mayer’s extensive touring career and his ongoing contributions to the industry, specifically highlighting his successful tour with Dead & Company as well as his collaboration with Dave Chappelle on the Controlled Danger Tour. 

Billboard will also honor Shawn Mendes with its inaugural Artist of the Year award, recognizing the success of his Illuminate World Tour and his upcoming arena tour off the back of his recently released third, self-titled album. Mendes and his manager Andrew Gertler, of AG Artists, will sit down for an interview during the Live Music Summit with Billboard’s West Coast Editor, Melinda Newman, to discuss how artists can build a deep connection with fans by combining online interactions with real life experiences. 

Additionally, Billboard will introduce a new award category to this year’s Live Music Awards program honoring industry pioneer Chip Hooper. Hooper played an essential role in the touring careers of acts such as Phish and Dave Matthews Band and was instrumental in the growth strategy of Paradigm’s music division. Developed in association with Hooper’s family and Paradigm, the Chip Hooper Award will be presented to a young rising star working as an executive in artist representation, management or concert promotion. Nominations for this award are now open and can be sent to nominations@billboard.com.

The conference portion of Billboard’s Live Music Summit and Awards will see a number of artists participating in keynote panels and interviews including the most recent winner of American Idol, Maddie Poppe, who will be joined for an interview with her manager Jonathan Shank. Ken Casey, founder, bassist and vocalist of Dropkick Murphys, will also take the stage with his longtime manager Jeff Castelaz. Lastly, singer-songwriter Andrew McMahon will be accompanied by his agent Josh Humiston, of APA Agency, to discuss the success of Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness

This year’s schedule of panel discussions will include the “Investing in R&B, Hip-Hop, and Gospel” panel, focused on building equality in unique platforms across the live markets for hip-hop, R&B and gospel, will include a conversation with Shawn Gee, president of Live Nation Urban; Marcus Allen, co-founder of the Broccoli City Festival; and Kirk Franklin, award-winning gospel singer. The Live Music Summit will also host the keynote panel, "Out of Balance: Does the Touring Business Need an Inclusivity Rider?” featuring Kevin Shivers, partner in WME’s Music Division; Heather Lowery, vice president of talent & touring at Live Nation Urban; Dina LaPolt, entertainment attorney at LaPolt Law; and Lou Taylor, CEO of Tri Sports and Entertainment Group and renowned business manager.

“This year’s conference has made a deep investment in promoting diversity in the music industry. We are thrilled to introduce so many high level panels focused on tackling the need for inclusivity in live entertainment,” said Billboard’s senior correspondent for touring and live entertainment, and Live Music Summit and Awards programmer, Dave Brooks. “With the addition of two new Billboard Live Music awards and with our growing schedule of strong panels, we are ready to give the touring and live entertainment industries the recognition they deserve.”

For more information, and to stay updated on new panels and bookings added to the schedule, please visit billboardlivemusicsummit.com.