The Deals: Slip.stream Raises $7.5M in Series A Round; AJR Signs to Mercury Records
Also this week: Outback Presents acquires Robomagic Live, Danmark snaps up Secretly Noord and more.
Creator-safe music platform Slip.stream secured $7.5 million of Series A financing from investors including Sony Music Entertainment, Third Prime and Lightshed Ventures. The new investment, which adds to the company’s prior seed funding round of $3.25 million, will be used to help drive the platform’s development, grow the Slip.stream team, add new content partnerships and increase catalog repertoire by opening the platform to more musicians. Slip.stream and Sony Music will also explore new premium music opportunities for Sony artists within the Slip.stream platform. In addition to the funding round, Slip.stream — headed up by Slip.stream founder and co-CEO David Carson, co-CEO Dan Demole, CMO Jesse Korwin and chief music officer Anthony Martini — added Gameover Talent’s Anthony Pisano and Faze Clan’s Faze Blaze to its advisory board and also hired three new executives: Chris McDonald, who will lead business development as senior vp; Shan Huang, who will oversee growth marketing efforts; and Michael Feldman, who will steer talent and influencer relationships.
AJR signed to the recently-relaunched Mercury Records with Republic Records. The band’s label, AJR Productions, will work with Mercury across all future releases. The New York-based trio – comprised of brothers Adam, Jack and Ryan Met – are currently touring the U.S. on their OK Orchestra world tour.
Former AEG president Rob Hallett joined Nashville-based Outback Presents following the acquisition of his company Robomagic Live in a deal led by Outback Presents co-founders Vaughn Millette and Mike Smarkdak. Hallet is based in the U.K. and has worked with artists including Prince, Duran Duran, Leonard Cohen and the Sex Pistols. He also co-produced the Free Larry Hoover benefit concert for Drake and Ye in Los Angeles in December 2021. Outback Presents launched in 2019 and in 2021 was granted $9.6 million from the federal Shuttered Venue Operator Grant program, the largest allocation granted to an independent promoter based in Tennessee. – Dave Brooks
Scandinavian independent distributor Danmark Music Group acquired the operations of Secretly Noord, the Scandinavia-based digital distribution arm of indie distributor Secretly Distribution. Under the deal, Secretly Distribution is becoming an equity partner in Danmark. Secretly Noord’s team, which includes Daggan Stamenkovic, Torny Gottberg and Jarle Savio, will become Danmark’s Nordic team, with offices in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Oslo. (MBW)
Rising Spanish rapper Ptazeta signed with Interscope Records and will soon release her debut single under the label titled “Ponte Pal Sex.” Hailing from Las Palmas Canary Islands, Ptazeta, a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community, fuses trap, reggaeton, and dembow music and has collaborated with Nicki Nicole, Bizarrap and Farina, among others. – Jessica Roiz
José Levy, the manager of María Becerra and other artists, signed a strategic alliance with music executives David Sonenberg and Armando Lozano. Under the deal, Levy will team with Sonenberg, founder and CEO of DAS Communications, and Lozano, founder of ZZinc Group, to take “Becerra’s success to the global level,” according to a press release.
Ticketing and discovery platform DICE expanded to Germany, where it now has more than 350 shows available in-app. To support its growth in the country, DICE is partnering with artists, promoters and venues across Germany, including promoters Goodlive Artists and Z|ART Agency and Hamburg venue Uebel & Gefährlich.
Ingrooves Music Group signed global distribution deals with Hindi singer-composer Tony Kakkar and Bollywood and Punjabi actor/singer/producer Ammy Virk. The agreement with Virk includes future releases from his Burfi Music record label; Virk’s next single, a collaboration with Indian rapper Divine, is set for release in June. Kakkar’s first release under the deal was the single “Main Akela Hoon,” which dropped on May 18.
Sky Rompiendo’s record label Black Koi Entertainment signed a global distribution deal with Virgin Music US Latin. The Colombian hitmaker behind hits by J Balvin, Ozuna, Maluma, Anitta and more launched the label to “promote and develop new talents that have fresh and authentic sounds, to help them position themselves in the industry,” according to a statement. Argentine artist Sael’s “Lucifer,” released on May 20, marked the first single under the new partnership. – Jessica Roiz
Vocal duo The War And Treaty signed with Universal Music Group Nashville. The husband-and-wife team of Michael Trotter Jr. and Tanya Trotter are currently recording new music which is expected to drop later this year. The duo also recently signed with Mary Hilliard Harrington and Christina Dunkley at Red Light Management and Jay Williams, Andrew Colvin and Grace Stern at William Morris Endeavor.
Music monetization company Connect Music Group, which provides distribution and publishing admin services, partnered with alternative investment management firm Preserver Partners to set up a $10 million fund that will help independent artists scale their new releases for maximum exposure. By teaming with Connect, which was established in August 2020, artists receive a team, infrastructure and resources while maintaining ownership of their music. Connect has over 200 label clients and editorial partnerships with Pandora, Spotify and Apple.
Warner Music Poland took a minority stake in BIG Idea, one of the country’s leading concert and festival promoters which has organized concerts that have been “engaged with” by 3.4 million people, according to a press release. Under the deal, the companies will team up to launch new festivals and expand the lineups of BIG Idea’s existing Yass! Festival and other events. They will additionally work to expand BIG Idea’s merch business and booking operations and develop its NFT-powered Live Entertainment Ecosystem.
Music-focused Web3 technology company Medallion – which allows artists to build fan communities that include behind-the-scenes content, special events and limited-edition products – raised over $9 million in a seed round led by The Chernin Group, with support from investors including Another Planet Entertainment, Dan Berkowitz, iLLENIUM, Mick Management, Mike Shinoda, Red Light Ventures, Ryan McMahon, Ryan Rabin, Tycho and tvg hospitality, along with various investors in the tech and crypto spaces. The seed funding will be used for early product development as well as Medallion’s engineering and product teams. By summer 2022, Medallion expects to launch the product with a “slate of established artists,” according to a press release.
Country singer RaeLynn signed with Jonas Group Entertainment for management. She released two new songs, “I Love My Hometown” and “If God Took Days Off,” on May 13.
Warner Music Asia’s regional label Asiatic Records signed Mongolian rapper Mrs M, who is described in a press release as “a pioneer of the country’s lively hip-hop and RnB scene.” Her first release with the label is the track “Daughter of Khan,” a collaboration with U.S.-based hip-hop producer Harry Fraud.
Riser House Records artist Dillon Carmichael signed with Deep Roots Management and Make Wake Artists for management. The title track from his sophomore album Son of A is currently sitting at No. 45 on Billboard‘s Country Airplay chart. Carmichael is booked by WME and repped by Shore Fire Media for PR.
B2B music streaming tech company Tuned Global struck a deal with Reactional Music, a technology that allows real-time personalization of soundtracks and music during video gameplay. Under the agreement, Tuned Global will serve as music backend provider, powering the delivery of rights-cleared music catalog from rightsholders to Reactional’s global music delivery platform Reactional Music Box. Through its partnership with Musiio, Tuned Global will also provide AI technology to tag all music on Reactional.
Ecuadorian songwriter and producer Kuinvi signed a management deal with Electric Feel Entertainment. The rising Miami-based artist has worked with artists such as Sebastian Yatra, Guaynaa and Danna Paola, to name a few, and most recently produced six tracks on Becky G’s Esquemas album, which debuted No. 1 on Latin Pop Albums. – Jessica Roiz
Nettwerk signed Nashville-based singer, songwriter, artist and producer Phillip LaRue, who will release his EP Colors on Sept. 16. He released the EP’s title track on May 13.
Austin-based singer-songwriter Jonathan Terrell signed with Range Music/Virgin under a deal the two companies reached last year. Terrell also signed with TMWRK for management and agents Brett Saliba and Buster Phillips at UTA for live representation. Currently on tour in Europe with Midland and slated to perform at Bonnaroo in June, Terrell released the single “Better for You” on May 13.
Big Machine Label Group imprint The Valory Music Co. signed Mackenzie Carpenter, whose latest single, “Can’t Nobody,” led the singer to be named SiriusXM’s next “Highway Find.” She previously co-wrote Lily Rose’s “Villain.”