BIOGRAPHIES

AMARA NWOGU

AMARA NWOGU (CANADA)

CEO – 8 TIL FAINT

is an entertainment business professional with experience in politics, corporate, and the non-profit sector. With the ability to translate large organizational goals into business objectives, Amara has successfully bridged the gap between grassroots organizations and corporate to create impact. Leading the Music City and Film strategy for Toronto as the Entertainment & Special Projects policy advisor for Mayor John Tory, Amara was able to empower community organizations, emerging musicians, and support entertainment businesses such as MLSE, AEG, Bell Media, NBCU Universal, Universal Music, Motion Pictures Association of America, and more.

She was determined to do the same at RBC, in partnership with Live Nation developing brand strategies, partnerships, and funding opportunities such as MVP Project, RBC Launchpad, and OVO Summit. Recently, Amara has worked with the international advocacy group, Global Citizen on their One World: Together At Home, which aired April 18th in partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO). The historic, cross-platform global special that celebrated and raised $127.9 million (USD) for health care workers and coronavirus relief with performances and appearances from Lady Gaga, Michelle Obama, Beyonce, Jimmy Fallon, Usher and more.

ANTOS STELLA

ANTOS STELLA (SA)

CEO – CONTENT CONNECT AFRICA

An extraordinary presence in the music industry for over 30 years, Antos Stella is one of the most respected businesswomen to emerge from the industry. Her artist relations have been one of her major strengths, enabling her to successfully bridge the gap between the creative and business worlds. Antos has been instrumental in some of the countries biggest international artist deals, an ambassador for the country internationally as well as a leading content aggregator focused specifically on the relationship between telecommunications and the digital distribution of local and international content. Antos and her team at CCA are expanding the distribution of content to include not only music but mobile television and video content too.

ANDREW MITCHLEY

ANDREW MITCHLEY (SA)

A&R HEAD-DAVID GRESHAM RECORDS

Andrew MItchley is a 38-year-old South African music executive, entrepreneur, tech investor & creative rights agent for change, with over 20 years of industry experience. Based in Johannesburg, Andrew is currently serving on the board of both The Recording Industry of South Africa (RISA) and the South African Music Performance Rights Association (SAMPRA), and has previously held the position as a non-executive director of RISA Audio Visual (RAV).

Andrew is the Chief Operations Officer & head of A&R at David Gresham Records & has recently become the co-founder and Managing Director at Gresham Rights Management, a direct licensing company representing SESAC & The Harry Fox Agency in Sub-Saharan Africa.

billy domingo

BILLY DOMINGO (SA)

COO – CAPE TOWN INTERNATIONAL JAZZ FESTIVAL

Billy Domingo is one of South Africa’s most respected and successful entertainment industry professionals. Domingo’s résumé includes a true Who’s Who of show business, having worked with some of the world’s most famous artists and biggest stage productions in the world.

From Cape Town’s Artscape Theatre to stage manage the official opening of Sun City with Frank Sinatra. This led him to become Entertainment Director at Sun City producing dozens of International shows over the years.  Highlights include Queen, Rod Stewart, Tina Turner and Elton John.  He has toured the world with Lucky Dube and produced the Royal Variety Show at the Royal Albert Hall in London. Domingo has travelled the world mentoring and leading large teams of professionals to go beyond their best. His passion for skills transfer and development is evident in every production he is responsible for, and especially the Cape Town International Jazz Festival’s annual youth development programme. Today, Billy Domingo is the Festival Director of the largest jazz festival in Sub-Saharan Africa, the Cape Town International Jazz Festival, also known as Africa’s Grandest Gathering. The award-winning festival is known globally for its large-scale production and superb hospitality experience. Other events Domingo has produced include the City of Cape Town’s Festive Lights Switch-On, the largest open-air family event in Cape Town, hosting over 100,000 people annually.

A passionate golfer, this family man has a drive for excellence in all areas of his life. But it is in his giving back, that the true measure of this gentleman is found. Domingo makes certain that each of the events he works on includes some measure of return to the future of our nation. It is not so much a desire but a full-hearted commitment to an industry to which he has dedicated much of his life

 

billy domingo

CORY LITWIN (Canada)

CEO – 2WENTY 2WENTY MUSIC GROUP

Cory Litwin is one of the music industry’s most successful, respected and ambitious artist managers, an empire-builder who groomed his fellow Canadian Murda Beatz from small-town upstart to the world’s top mega-hitmaker. His collaboration with Murda is just the start of the multi-faceted empire Cory is building, using personal relationships to forge partnerships – all part of a personal philosophy that you are your own best asset.

A 34-year-old native of Toronto, Cory began building his network as a student at the University of Western Ontario. He started out as an event producer putting on parties and epic bashes that grew ever larger, which led to his first company 2wenty 2wenty Marketing. Among other landmarks, Cory promoted and produced his fellow Toronto native Drake’s first-ever live concert in 2009. He developed relationships with The Weeknd, too, throwing his first large-scale show in 2011.

After University, Cory moved back to his hometown and became known as the king of Toronto nightlife – the guy who put on festivals knew everybody, and could get visiting celebrities, rap stars and athletes into the right clubs to meet the right people. All his contacts led to him forming a profitable side-business, Goldie Rocks Grills, making custom grills for Snoop Dogg, Kylie Jenner, Khalid and Swae Lee, among other celebrities. But Cory had aspirations beyond jewelry or parties. With sights set on the music business, he was pondering how to break into artist management when the perfect act entered his orbit in 2014: Shane Lee Lindstrom, a 20-year-old producer trying to establish himself under the name Murda Beatz. He knew of Cory’s reputation in Toronto and his connections, and a courtship ensued. 2wenty 2wenty Marketing slowly transitioned into 2wenty 2wenty Music Group as Cory put his network to work at Murda’s service. They began taking extended trips to Los Angeles to network and record, and the hustle paid off. Murda crafted trap hits with Travis Scott, Nicki Minaj, Migos, Drake, 2 Chainz, 6ix9ine and many other high-profile artists becoming a multi-platinum, Grammy nominated producer. Cory was heavily involved with Murda’s career on the creative as well as managerial side, earning co-producer’s credit on Drake’s chart-topping hit “Nice For What.” It was Cory who suggested Lauryn Hill’s 1998 single “Ex-Factor” as sample hook for the song, which spent eight weeks at No. 1 and earned two grammy nominations. 

 

billy domingo

ERIN ASHLEY LOWEN (Canada)

MUSIC JOURNALIST & DIGITAL SPECIALIST

For the past several years, Erin has spent her time diving into the worlds of music journalism, digital content creation and festival programming with the hopes of pushing the Canadian music community, specifically hip-hop and R&B music, to the forefront of the entertainment industry. Starting her career in 2008 at the height of music blogging and indie music forums, Erin has written for both online and print publications, landing on the role of Hip-Hop Editor of Canada’s national music editorial, Exclaim! magazine, in 2014.

Journalism aside, her love of music has also expanded into the festival market. At home in Toronto, Erin worked tirelessly with Manifesto’s Festival of Community and Culture as both the Educational Programmer and lending a hand to its music programming for six years, programmed conference topics for CMW, and hosted three successful all-Canadian music showcases at Atlanta’s A3C Festival before becoming their 2017 conference manager.

The most recent additions to Erin’s career in the music industry includes her work as an interview producer and researcher for the Emmy and Peabody-award winning Netflix series Hip-Hop Evolution, which is heading into its fourth season in 2020.  Beyond her work writing and curating, Erin currently serves as a juror / judge for FACTOR, Polaris, Prism Prize and is on the JUNO Awards Rap Committee. Working with independent artists, event planners, community leaders, non-profit organizations and marketing companies across North America, Erin has been planting seeds coast-to-coast that are bound to grow as time moves forward.

With a passion for music and the respect for arts culture, Erin is carefully crafting a change in the Canadian music infrastructure that not only reflects her own talents, but also those of the people who surround her.

 

EVELYN CREAM

EVELYN CREAM (Canada)

MARKETING, PUBLICITY, ARTIST MANAGEMENT

After working at CAPAC (now called SOCAN), Anthem Entertainment Group/SRO Management, and Warner Music Canada, Evelyn started Athena Music International in 1998 to help artists and labels touch the world with their music via marketing, publicity, artist management, and consulting. She has been interviewed by Billboard magazine several times for articles on international marketing and distribution strategies and was President of the All Canadian Jazz Festival.

During her career she has worked with Grammy and Juno award-winning musicians from several genres of music as well as 2 members of the Rock and Roll Fame of Fame including: RUSH, The Yardbirds, Blue Rodeo, Great Big Sea, Loreena McKennitt, 3 Tenors, Steve Vai, Herbie Hancock, Roy Hargrove, Kronos Quartet, Pierre Bensusan, Dweezil Zappa, Paul Brandt, Steve Lukather, and many more. A big fan of live music, Evelyn has attended 1,000+ performances of music from all types of genres.

 

JOTAM MATARIRO

JOTAM MATARIRO (SA)

CEO: CAPASSO

Jotam Matariro is the Chief Executive Officer of Composers Authors and Publishers Association (CAPASSO) NPC. CAPASSO is a Mechanical Rights (MR) collective management organisation based in Johannesburg South Africa and the only MR organisation in Africa. 

He is passionate about equitable distribution of music royalties especially on the African continent. He is a firm believer that as Africans we need to decide our future by making use of modern technology to enhance remuneration of creative work.  Under his leadership, CAPASSO has developed to become the digital licensing hub for the African continent

 

JOTAM MATARIRO

JOHN HARRIS (Canada)

CEO: HARRIS INSTITUTE

President, Harris Institute (1989–present) – Internationally recognized leader in music industry education. President, Metronome Canada Foundation (1993-present) Integrated music centre on Toronto’s waterfront. Founder, Harris International Program (HIP) (1997-present)

Post-secondary partnerships with the International Fund for Ireland,

University of the West of Scotland and Edinburgh Napier University.

Founding Trustee, Domenic Troiano Scholarships (2005–2010)

Financial assistance for emerging guitarists in honour of a legend.

 

JOTAM MATARIRO

K23.CA (Canada)

STRATEGIC BRANDING AGENCY

Brand identity has become one of the most essential needs for any artist in the music industry. Let alone anyone trying to impact the social media world. In this fast paced world of social media and competition, how do we separate our visual story and stand out? k23.ca is an agency that specializes in the creative direction in both visual branding and strategic marketing. We believe in the importance of a strong visual narrative that can tell your story with clarity and focus. Helping you find the big WHY in everything you want to accomplish and give to your listeners. It’s the branding that creates the story and marketing that tells it! Nathalie is a key partner at k23.ca. She brings to the table a keen understanding of business development and marketing. Having worked with artists and music industry entrepreneurs, she figures out the next steps in the creative growth from direction to action. As a partner, she designs excellent business frameworks for the desired output of each brand’s current campaign. Tzu is another key partner at k23.ca. He brings an eye with a solid grasp of many elements of both the music industry and visual arts. Having received a music industry diploma and a visual arts degree, Tzu has been a professional photographer for over 10 + years. Combining his technical photography eye to perfectly capture your brand’s visual voice

 

RENNETH SHISIKULE

RENNETH SHISIKULE (SA)

CEO – IMEXSA

She started her music career in 1999 as an artist. She also got involved in development of young women in the music business while working together with a label called GTP-Productions. Her aspirations to grow her music globally saw her join forces with an organisation called Gauteng Growth Development Agency (GGDA). It was this partnership that led to her forming IMEXSA back in 2010, an organisation she has now been running for over seven years.

 

Through IMEXSA and the SA Indies Music Week, she has helped over 100 African Unsigned and Independent Music Professionals present their talent and products at various conferences like Popkomm, Womex, Primavera Pro, Canada Music Week, Midem, CMJ, Africa Festival and South by South West. In 2017 she was appointed by Midem, one of the world’s largest music trade shows held annually in France, as one of the members of its Artist Accelerator Committee. The programme is designed to support managers, agents, labels and publishers as they look to grow their artists’ profiles globally. The programme has been running for a few years and in 2015 included the well-known L.A Reid on its artistic selection committee.

 

TRISHA CARTER

TRISHA CARTER (Canada)

MUSIC EXPORT MANAGER (CIMA)

With more than 20 years’ experience in the music industry and international trade, Trisha heads the Canadian Independent Music Association’s global export service, Music Export Canada, delivering international market and business development initiatives, networking events, Canadian Blast showcases, and Canada House venue takeovers through strategic partnerships at various conference festivals around the world. Trisha’s work has helped to establish the trusted Canada brand at the foremost events across the globe, including SXSW (USA), The Great Escape (UK), Reeperbahn (DE), Americana (US), Americana (UK), FIMPRO (MX), Jazzahead (DE), and many more. Beyond major conferences,

 

Trisha develops and coordinates private, customized business and showcasing trade missions to support CIMA members’ business and professional development interests. Through these uniquely targeted missions, Trisha has led Canadian delegations and their artists to markets in Japan, Australia, Portugal, Chile, and just over the border to our neighbours in NYC, LA, Chicago, and San Francisco, in the US, and recently brought in delegations from France, Eastern Europe and Australia to Canada.Trisha is leveraging her vast experience in developing Canada’s largest music export office along with extensive international networks to work closely with Canada’s music industry to develop and implement business continuity strategies in the COVID-19 era.

 

TRISHA CARTER

MARGARET MCGUFFIN (Canada)

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR -MUSIC PUBLISHERS

Previously, Margaret has held management positions with a number of different collective management associations including CMRRA and Access Copyright. She also worked for nearly a decade as a consultant with a wide range of organizations in the creative industries sector.   

Margaret holds a BA from the University of Western Ontario and an MBA in Arts and Media Administration from York University’s Schulich School of Business.   Margaret volunteers extensively and currently is Chair on the Board of Directors of Work in Culture and the Advisory Committee of MusiCounts.

 

MARINA ADAM

MARINA ADAM (Canada) 

MANAGER – ONTARIO MUSIC OFFICE

Marina joined Ontario Creates in 2013 to deliver funding and economic development programs to Ontario’s music industry. In 2017 she was instrumental in introducing the international Keychange campaign to Canadian Music Week to promote gender parity in Ontario’s music industry. She has previously held government positions in international trade and investment attraction, finance, communications, and culture industries policy.  In another life, Marina was a post-production sound professional on numerous film and TV projects, earning an Emmy award for her work on a TV miniseries. She also sang/played keyboards in an indie music band that twice toured Canada in the early 2000s.

 

MARINA ADAM

MPUMI PHILLIPS (SA)

CREATIVE MANAGER – SHEER PUBLISHING

Mpumi Phillips manages the creative department at Sheer Publishing where she handles music clearances for film, television and commercials, and works with a wide range of clients, including artists, composers, production houses, Advertising agencies and post production companies.  Mpumi has done music supervisor for films and TV productions such as Rhythm City, Beyond the River, Blood and Water, Angus Buchan’s Ordinary People, Babalas, iNumber Number, Nothing for Mahala and Inside Story. Her career started at a non-profit organization in Los Angeles called “Artist for a New South Africa (ANSA)” –  founded by Denzel Washington, Alfre Woodard, Ted Danson and Blair Underwood. Mpumi also worked as Label Manager for Ghetto Ruff, and indie label famed for launching the careers of artists such as Zola, Ishmael, DJ Cleo and DJ Sbu.  She has also served as a member of the Recording Industry of South Africa (RISA) steering committee which is in charge of the South African Music Awards (SAMA). Mpumi Phillips has published articles regarding music clearance and music supervisory in Screen Africa a magazine which is a guide to filmmakers throughout Africa, as well as The Callsheet, a film industry guide.

 

MARINA ADAM

MICHAEL MOETI (SA)

CEO – SOUTH AFRICAN MUSIC WEEK

Michael is creative multimedia entrepreneur and business strategist with more than 25 years’ experience in the arts/entertainment/media industry. He has pioneered the careers of top artists in both Canada and South Africa.

From 2008 Michael went back to the TV/Film industry, as a producer and sales agent. This meant he’d widely travel internationally to music markets and film festivals and conferences to position local talent with a signature township sound, and original African stories. These travels had a lot to do with ADMC evolving into a multimedia-content company, as new opportunities emerged within the Film/TV production space, particularly in relation to digital content production. It was in such a space that Michael managed to forge partnerships with international producers and distributors whom with he’d get into business. These include Grey Eagle Films, an American company that ADMC/Sidewalk is currently developing an 8 slate film project with, as well as E-One, a Beverly hills-based film distributor.

In the late 1900s and early 2000 he formed independent record labels, Calabash Records and
Township Records , through which he launched the music careers of urban music artists. In Canada he launched the music career of top hip hop group Rascalz during the West Coast vs.
East Coast battles of the 1990s. The group won the national honour at the Canadian Music Awards (JUNO) as the best hip hop group. He further launched Renaissance Vol. 1, the first West coast of Canada various artists urban music album. In South Africa in 2000 he discovered and launched the music career of the late award winning R&B artist TK. Her
album single ‘Mind yo business,’ turned her into an instant sensation as the number one R&B singer in South Africa in the league of Destiny’s Child. In the late 200s he continued to work in the music industry as a publisher of Campus Times and Campus Vibe student newspapers respectively. In 2007 he released a Campus Hits Vol 1 CD featuring top local artists hits.
Currently Michael is the founding CEO of South African Music Week and the South African
coordinator of Canadian Music Week (SAMW) , an annual international music conference, festival and expo in Toronto. As the CEO of South African Music, his passion for unearthing new talent to launch globally continues.

 

MARINA ADAM

MIKE TANNER (Canada) 

TORONTO’S MUSIC SECTOR DEVELOPMENT OFFICER.

As part of the City’s Film & Entertainment team, Mike works with the music community across Toronto, supporting the industry to help it achieve its potential as a major generator of economic benefit and a touchstone of Toronto’s culture while advocating for the interests of the music business in policies developed at City Hall.​

Mike’s own experience as a musician includes many years performing, touring, and recording. Prior to joining the City, he was Director of Operations for the North by Northeast Festival.

 

MARINA ADAM

MUNYARADZI CHANETSA (SA)

A&R MANAGER – AFRICA

Munyaradzi (Munya) has dedicated his professional life to the business of music and entertainment. He is currently employed as A&R Manager: Africa for Sony ATV Music Publishing South Africa. With over 10 years experience in the music and entertainment space he also has vast experience in the sourcing, licensing, curation, creation, monetization, and distribution of audio and visual content. He has extensive experience across the continent due to directly engaging with mobile and online platforms, independent record labels, artists and publishers.

Further, as an employee of Sony ATV Music Publishing, Munya has given presentations and attended key forums centered around copyright across South Africa, Angola, Uganda, Ghana and Nigeria. Before joining Sony, Munya was employed as the Head of Licensing for the Composer, Author and Publishing Association of South Africa. Prior to that he was the Head of Operations: Africa at Content Connect Africa from 2009 – 2019 and prior to that he was the Head of Marketing and Promotions for Putumayo World Music in South Africa from 2007 to 2009.

 

MARINA ADAM

NEILL DIXON (Canada)

CEO – CANADIAN MUSIC WEEK

Neill Dixon, who heads Canadian Music Week, has a 45-year history in Canada’s music industry, and has played a significant role in its growth and international development. After graduating from College in London, England, he came to Toronto in 1967, and spent three years at the tail-end of the folk music “boom” running Grumbles, a coffee house that featured major Folk names of the day. Dixon moved briefly into the record business taking on the role of Regional Promotion Manager at RCA Records before becoming VP of National Promotion. His path soon changed to management, working with artists as varied as Martha Reeves, Jr. Walker, Triumph and Long John Baldry before turning his focus to his new startup Solid Gold Records, an independent label that garnered 27 gold and platinum records in less than five years.

Neill launched Canadian Music Week in 1983, and since then it has become the most important single event in this country’s music industry. The event is longest running Conference/Festival in North America. In recent years Neill has introduced a number of Canadian Awards shows, a film festival, the Canadian International Comedy Fest, and new talent searches. Neill has also put his extensive world-wide database to good use by passionately promoting Canada’s best export ready artists and built CMW’s importance as an export development engine. With his team, they have organized trade summit initiatives with governments around the world and have worked closely with sponsors in all levels of the Canadian government. As Neill puts it: “It is our mission to build bridges of trade and culture between Canada and the world.”

PIERRE-LOUIS PINEL (CA)

CANADIAN ARTS COUNCIL

Pierre-Louis is a proud Franco-Ontarian Canadian. 

As a child, Pierre-Louis toured across Canada with a musical troupe that recorded 14 albums and went on to a be a national television series. He also worked in radio as host for an early morning jazz program before joining the team at the Ottawa International Jazz Festival. While at the jazz festival, Pierre-Louis programmed the world music series.  He also programmed the music stage at Ottawa’s children’s theatre festival.   In 2007, Pierre-Louis began working at the Canada Council for the Arts as a Program Officer in the Music Section.  He is currently a Program Officer in the Arts Across Canada and Arts Abroad programs. 

 

MARINA ADAM

RICARDO DA COSTA (SA)

DIRECTOR – SOULCANDI

Ricardo da Costa knows a thing or two about what makes a dancefloor tick—master of the addictive morphing bassline and a pounding kick drum, his fusion of electro, tribal and tech house has marked him as one of the most significant DJs to emerge from an already illustrious era of innovators.  He is one of the most prominent and accomplished figures in South African dance music— his credentials read like every DJ’s daydream but, above anything else, what shines through is the fact that Ricardo da Costa has tirelessly followed his passion for dance music and it is this potent passion that permeates all his endeavours.

Director of South Africa’s most well-respected dance label by day (Soul Candi Music) and a highly sought-after DJ by night, Ricardo’s world revolves around music—and it’s clear that he’s got all bases covered.  His special gift for finding dance-floor diamonds has led to some of the most successful dance releases in South African music history.  With a growing repertoire of highly-successful releases behind him— (nine to date and the tenth on the way) Ricardo has consistently brought his distinct flavour and contagious enthusiasm for House music to South Africa’s ever-evolving party scene.   He has held his own alongside some of the most legendary DJs and producers worldwide: Erick Morillo, Pete Tong, Deadmau5, Alex Kenji, Bass Kleph, Sasha, Paul van Dyk, Martin Solveig, Sandy Rivera, Junior Jack, Kid Creme, Tall Pall, Tiesto, Tom Novy, Axwell, PleasureKraft, Bingo Players, Dubfire, Sharam, Swedish House Mafia, Skrillex, Carl Cox and David Guetta— Ricardo’s been there, done that!

 A quick rewind takes us to the nineties when young Ricardo was inspired and captured by the sounds of groups like 2 Brothers on the 4th Floor, Cappello, Nightcrawlers, Culture Beat and the iconic band, Depeche Mode. A year or two later, Ricardo was seduced by the burgeoning house scene and his DJ career began to take root.  In 1994, at Azurri Cafe, Ricardo’s skills first registered on the clubbing radar and he’s never looked back.  Fifteen years later Ricardo has headlined at virtually every nightclub in South Africa, from Flyhouse, Bump, Tramps, DNA, Therapy, ESP, Nexus, Opium, 52 Parliament, Taboo, Origin, Trinity,Truth, Aruba Lounge, to Nicci Beach and  many more. Ricardo is no stranger to the sprawling madness of festivals either, rocking thousands at Urban Wave (David Guetta, Dubfire, Sharam), Kiss, Sound Factory, ICE, Woodstock, Fu-Cha Gathering and, of course, his long-standing residency at Africa’s biggest dance music festival, H20. It’s here that Ricardo has fuelled a massive 18,000 crowd with his magnetic blend of beats.  When Ricardo Da Costa gets his groove on, he grabs your soul and won’t let go.

The demand for his skills has spread to neighbouring state Mozambique and has led to globe-trotting expeditions where he played at some of the world’s best international clubbing cities and festivals.  2004 saw Ricardo fly to Dubai where he rocked club Oxygen; in 2007 he hit Germany’s legendary Love Parade (1,2 million people) and this year his UK tour included gigs at Ministry of Sound, Hoxton Pony, Zulu Bar.

Not content with playing at other people’s parties, Ricardo and partners conceptualized and realized an event at South Africa’s premier night-club, Truth.  For two years running the wild and colourful ‘Electric Circus’ parties have pulled well over 3000 of Johannesburg’s dancefloor devotees— a testament to Ricardo’s role as a party-starter, trendsetter and industry mainstay.

Ricardo’s charisma and capacity to lead has defined his career from day one: appointed manager for both Mental Groove Records (1999) and Retro Music (2004) Ricardo developed his in-depth understanding of all facets of the dance music industry.  In 2006, Ricardo took up his position at Soul Candi Records where he manages operations of label as well as A&R.  His expertise and leadership is now responsible for heading up Soul Candi LIVE, the eventing division for Soul Candi that is responsible for hosting SPRING FIESTA.

MARINA ADAM

SIYA METANE (SA)

FOUNDER: SLIKOURONLIFE

Siya Metane, well-known in the music industry as Slikour, has a heart for music and a head for business. He’s passed through numerous rites of passage – some hard, some disheartening, some positive – but all adding to the skills and insight of a man building new digital platforms for companies to build their brands on.

Metane, now 39 years old, has a theory that it was his very passion for music that swept him along the complex pathways of his life to where he is today. There was no plan, he says, but there was a deep sense that conforming to expectations for his life would suffocate him. He tried for a while, completing matric and studying computer engineering. He gave it up due to lack of funds and, with a home-built studio put together with contributions from friends and family, he made music, but felt he was on a road to nowhere. There was music but no growth – and seemingly no future.

Then the renowned hip hop group Skwatta Kamp came together – making music in Metane’s mother’s house – and in 2002 their first album was released. The group produced three more albums winning numerous awards for their work, including two SAMA awards for the best rap album and a Channel O best hip-hop music video award, until they went their separate ways in 2006.

Siya came home “with the first R100 000 I made from music – it was a fortune to me!” His father convinced Siya to invest in his taxi business – and his first business negotiation happened, setting the tone for astute business acumen and management in his future. While other areas in his life progressed, the taxi business continued to grow and provide a sound backstop when he took risks and left the more traditional paths to financial stability.

In 2006 Metane and a partner started a music agency. “We didn’t know what an agency was meant to do – our knowledge was limited; I had picked up some marketing basics from a Coca-Cola Integrated Marketing Communications programme, but we were passionate, and that made a difference.”

This venture provided a steppingstone for Metane to partner with largescale agency RE now called Openfield Joburg working with Billy Lascaris, son of renowned adman Reg Lascaris, to provide insight into relevant markets. His knowledge and understanding grew and he learned a lot from MD of  Openfield Franco Barocas, which creates and amplifies “emotional experiences to achieve brand objectives” using sponsorship, brand experiences, and CSI.

Metane had a different vision though – and it was digital. He opted to part ways with Openfield and set off on his own, not knowing “who’s going to believe a guy with no qualifications and big talk!” It was a risk; he now had a family to take care of, but he did still have the taxi business to bring in some income.

He immersed himself in the business of building his digital platform for news and videos from the music industry – but struggled with the commercial aspect of his vision. “I knew that content was in hand, but that a commercial strategy was key to the platform.” Metane established SlikourOnLife, a platform for sharing information on urban culture and music, featuring videos and interviews to give substance to the music and to musicians who may not have access to traditional platforms, and offering a more cohesive and accessible place for their videos than YouTube.

We’re creating communities that brands can plug into authentically. We’re selling what no digital agency can sell – we’re selling the truth, the culture, and we’re bringing worlds together. We create the space where talk moves from content to the brands, and we have the analytics to determine the return on investment by brands on the platform.”

Metane’s passion for music is ever the driver behind his astute and innovative business initiatives, and he thrives in the world that gives brands a voice to tell the bigger story.

MARINA ADAM

SYLVESTER CHAUKE (SA)

Leader of the Year 2017, Sylvester  Chauke is Founder and Chief Architect  of South Africa’s PR agency of the year  2018, winner of the ICCO World’s Best  PR campaign 2019, IABC Best of the  Best 2019, PRISM PR Campaign of the  Year 2019 and Adweek Top 100  Fastest Growing Agency in the world

A passionate advocate for creativity,  Member of the Advisory Council for the  World Economic Forum Global  Shapers, Board Member of the SA  State Theatre, Top 100 Influential  Africans 2018 and author of ‘Stand  Against Bland’.

 

MARINA ADAM

THERESHO SELESHO (SA)

Theresho graduated from the University of Pretoria with a BAdmin in International Relations.

Selesho is a dynamic creative entrepreneur, who is driven by his passion for the development of people specifically in the creative industry.

Theresho honed his skills in the live music and entertainment industry during his time at Hilltop Live where he held various positions from logistics manager, production manager, project management and ended up establishing a Sponsorship and Rights business within the group which helped commercial brands leverage the power of music events and artists to better connect with their audiences and saw huge success in building strong partnerships between, music properties and various global brands that helped in the development of the sector and all its role players.

Theresho then moved onto head up the Award Winning Geometry Global agency which is part of the Ogilvy and Mather global network of agencies, where he led the experiential team as Experiential Marketing Director working across the African continent for several years and winning a number of notable awards for ground breaking creative and effective work.

This in turn helped him develop a dynamic and specialized set of skills within the creative industry.

Selesho has produced several key national events, stage productions, facilitated international cultural exchanges with various cultural desks with partnerships across Europe. These programs include the development and execution of strategies to help artists and production crews connect with their counter parts in festival environments with the main aim being the exchange of skills, knowledge and showcasing for to new markets.

Theresho currently hold several leadership positions, which include being a CEO an entertainment business called Matchbox LIVE, which owns the OppiKoppi Festival, DRUMBeat Festival, Alchemy Festival, The Rhythm, and several other music properties.

He is also a co-owner of the ABE, which is a mix use space in the heart of the City of Tshwane, The African Beer Emporium hosts several music and cultural events, from TEDxPretoria, creative workshops, showcases and other lifestyle events that form part of inner-city development program which is being driven by a network of entrepreneurs and property developers within the city.

Theresho’s passion for the development of musicians and music professionals has seen him lead the BANDUSTRY inniative which is a platform that is aimed at the sustainable development of the South African Music Industry for upcoming musicians, established musicians and music professionals alike.

The platform hosts regular workshops in Cape Town, Joburg and Durban and has now moved to online broadcasts of various panel discussions by industry professionals and musicians around key topical issues affecting and influencing the ever-changing music industry landscape.

MARINA ADAM

THOMAS BECKMAN (CANADA)

MUSIC COMPOSER & TEACHER

CMC associate composer and violist, Thomas Beckman (b.1984) serves as Festival composer for the Artists for Conservation (2015 – present), in-house-composer for MillsPictures Studio, and film composer for the ongoing Promising Practices documentary series. As an active musician Thomas additionally serves as principal violist of the Prince George Symphony, lead violist for Vancouver entertainment group Sons of Granville, and violist for the Arbutus Duo. His projects have varied widely from film scores for independent shorts and documentaries to concert music commissions by such groups as the Borealis String Quartet, the Vancouver Youth Choir, the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre, the Prince George Symphony, the Postmodern Camerata, the Vancouver Symphony and the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra.

Recent concert classical works consist of the ‘St Roch Suite’ premiered by the Prince George Symphony and Jude Neale (March 2019), ‘Flux’ premiered by the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra (April 2019), ‘Tango,’ the ‘Engine Room’ and ‘Quella’ all dedicated to and premiered by the Borealis String Quartet (June 2017, 2018 and 2019), and ‘Life in the Universe’ commissioned by H.R MacMillan Space Centre and newly released on Redshift Records.

MARINA ADAM

VINCENT DEGIORGIO (Canada)

CEO: CUMBA MUSIC PUBLISHING

Vincent Degiorgio Is the president and CEO of Cymba Music Publishing, based in Toronto. Cymba is home to artists such as Laur Elle, Talltale, Logan Richard, Keshia Chante and Reeny Smith. Cymba’s diverse music roster is akin to Vince’s CD and vinyl collection, which may be the reason jazz guitarist Sam Wilson or harpist Sarah Page are also a part of the Cymba family. Recently, Cymba’s team includes writer/producer Davor Vulama from Vancouver and new signings Jordan Best and Grammy nominated Anwar McDonald.

 

An award-winning songwriter himself, Vince has been recently re-elected as chair of the Music Publishers Canada for a third term, and also serves on the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame board of directors. A passionate, creative first, advocate for music, his past experiences includes working for RCA Records in New York (signing NSync in the process) and forming one of English Canada’s most vibrant dance labels in the youth of his career which he still owns and operates today. Away from the business, Vince is a known traveler, spending significant time in Japan with his family.

MARINA ADAM

WISEMAN QINANI NGUBO (SA)

COO

Wiseman Qinani Ngubo is an experienced executive who is currently heads the Chief Operations Officer at Africa’s fastest growing collective management organisation. As part of his role, he has been involved in ensuring the initiation and sustained growth of broadcast and digital licensing on the continent. Through this experience, Wiseman has obtained crucial technical expertise relating to the licensing and usage music both traditional broadcast mediums as well as in the digital environment. Wiseman has led teams that have seen the successful multi-territorial licensing of services such as Apple Music, YouTube, Spotify, Facebook, MultiChoice etc. Such licenses have seen the growth of subscription services across various parts of the African continent. Wiseman is also involved in various lobbying efforts in South Africa aimed at ensuring that the legal reform which is currently underway protects the rights of creatives. in this light, he was selected as one of 5 experts tasked with advising the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on the Copyright Amendment Bill