Mass Appeal, the 21-year-old graffiti/urban culture 'zine that has evolved to include TV and film production as well as a record label and creative services division, announced on Thursday a new music publishing joint venture with Pulse Music Group, the indie music publishing, management and music services company.
The companies said the new partnership will focus on discovering up-and-coming artists, songwriters and producers, using Mass Appeal's clout and contacts to help close the deals and then promote the song catalogs. As part of the pairing, the firms will also work on original content for Mass Appeal's media projects. Pulse will handle worldwide music publishing administration for the partnership.
"Publishing has been one of the key missing pieces to the evolving Mass Appeal brand," noted Mass Appeal CEO Peter Bittenbender in a statement. "From the minute we met the team at Pulse, it was clear we had a shared vision for the future of the industry and common passions for music and culture. We are thrilled to grow this new division with our incredible partners at Pulse."
This is just the latest foray into new territory for Mass Appeal, founded in 1996 as a graffiti 'zine. In 2014 it worked with Nas to launch Mass Appeal Records, which has released new music from Run the Jewels and Dave East, along with posthumous records by J Dilla and Pimp C. In the television space, Mass Appeal has partnered with CNN, TBS and Comedy Central, among others, to create urban culture-themed programming.
Earlier this year, the company announced it had raised $6 million in a series A funding round led by Universal Music Group.
Founded in 2010, Pulse Music Group's client roster includes artists Miike Snow, Galantis, Jukebox the Ghost, Børns, Wild Belle and -- conveniently -- Mass Appeal's Run the Jewels and Dave East. Its slate of cross-genre songwriters include El-P from RtJ, Luke Laird (Carrie Underwood, Little Big Town), Bonnie McKee (Katy Perry, Kesha) and BloodPop (Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber). In August 2016, Pulse announced a joint venture with Marc Anthony's Magnus Media.
"Our vision in founding Pulse was to align ourselves with artists and creative companies at the vanguard of culture," said founder and co-CEO Josh Abraham. "We couldn't be more excited to add Mass Appeal as a creative partner."