The Deals: Detroit Rapper Tay B Signs With Azoffs’ Giant Music; WME Teams With Audio Up

Irving and Jeffrey Azoff‘s recently-launched Giant Music record label signed Detroit rapper Tay B in partnership tie AFLN Music Group. Tay B released his most recent album, 4Eva In My Bag, earlier this year. Run by Shawn Holiday, Giant Music previously signed Atlanta-based trap artist SwaVay in partnership with Def Jam. Giant Music is a resuscitation of the Giant name for the Azoffs, with Irving having launched Giant Records in 1990 as a joint venture with Warner Bros. Records.

Podcast company Audio Up, which focuses on trying to create hit tracks by leveraging podcasts as the launch pad, announced a new strategic partnership with WME to support the development of artists from Audio Up’s podcast slate. Under the deal, WME will advise Audio Up on its touring and content opportunities across film, TV and digital and provide the company with access to its network across music, entertainment and brands. One of the first initiatives under the partnership is the development of Latin artist Balam, who will star in and contribute original music to the forthcoming Audio Up scripted podcast Day of the Dead. In tandem with promotional efforts around the podcast, WME served as an advisor on booking Balam’s Dec. 10 debut performance at reggaeton festival Viva Urbano. WME will also work with Audio Up on the podcaster’s Apple Music show The Ballad of Uncle Drank by turning the show’s title character into a real-life touring country experience.

Sony Music Masterworks made a majority investment in Dubai-based concert promotion, talent management, events and production company MAC Global. Day-to-day operations of MAC Global will continue to be led by co-founders Rob McIntosh and Daniel Goldberg, who will work with Sony Music Masterworks president Mark Cavell, senior vp of business development Josh Lerman and managing director of Senbla Ollie Rosenblatt. Under the arrangement, MAC Global will expand its remit to include comedy, sports, virtual events, orchestral events and immersive music experiences.


The Black Music Action Coalition (BMAC) teamed with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis for the Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis Music Makers Grant, which will award $5,000 annually to an emerging BIPOC songwriter or producer. BMAC will screen applicants, with Jam and Lewis personally picking the finalist. Online applications for this year’s grant close Nov. 15, with the winner to be announced in December.

Townsend Music signed Kaiser Chiefs in partnership with Absolute Label Services/Utopia, V2 and The Orchard for the band’s next studio album, which is slated for release next year. Townsend and Absolute will provide physical and digital distribution for the album in the U.K. under Townsend’s D2C+ model, while V2 will distribute it in France and Benelux and The Orchard will distribute it in other territories.

SoundExchange struck deals with Zelle and Cash App allowing registered creators to elect to receive their royalty payments via either of those mobile payment apps. Creators can contact the SoundExchange customer services team to learn more about app-specific eligibility requirements and sign up to receive royalty payments via the platforms.

Country newcomer Dalton Dover, who appeared on Season 16 of The Voice and has since garnered a following on TikTok, signed with Universal Music Group Nashville. He will release his upcoming music via Mercury Nashville.

Pop and melodic rap artist Zzz. signed with Warner Records in partnership with Lil Bibby‘s Grade A Productions. His major-label debut single is “All I Never Wanted.”

Live Nation has signed on as the exclusive booking partner for the nonprofit Capital One City Parks Foundation SummerStage festival. Ahead of the 2023 summer season, Live Nation will book all benefit concerts between June and October at the flagship Rumsey Playfield site in New York’s Central Park.

Composer Max Richter appointed Huxley as his global publicity and brands agency, which will also represent Richter and Yulia Mahr‘s Oxfordshire recording studio and multi-arts production facility Studio Richter Mahr.

U.K.-based Logan Media Entertainment teamed up with BMG to create a new record label, Tag8 Music, that will “specialize in the growing market for resurgent established artists,” according to a LinkedIn post by Logan Media. The label will launch with a roster including Blue, Pixie Lott, Roachford and a cast album of The Drifters Girl musical featuring Beverley Knight.

Naxos Music Group signed an extensive partnership with Downtown-owned FUGA. Under the deal, Naxos will have access to FUGA’s full suite of services including digital distribution, marketing services, royalty accounting and use of FUGA’s trends and analytics platform for Naxos and associated labels.

Los Angeles-based queer singer-songwriter Olive Klug (they/them) signed with Nettwerk, which will release their single “Out of Line” on Nov. 18.

European music royalty investing marketplace ANote Music partnered with Revelator, which provides digital IP infrastructure to music rights holders and music companies, for an arrangement that will allow Revelator clients to list their shares of tracks in their catalogs on ANote. The two companies will also collaborate on integrating Revelator’s technology, data management, predictive models and payment systems into ANote.

Symphonic partnered with music company Ropeadope for exclusive global distribution and marketing. Under the deal, Symphonic will provide digital and physical distribution and playlist pitching for Ropeadope’s full back catalog and key new releases. The partnership will encompass forthcoming releases by The Headhunters, Sarah Elizabeth Charles and Mthunzi Mvubu.

North Dakota pop-punk band Brooklane signed to Los Angeles-based Adventure Cat Records, an indie label from the artist management team at KMGMT. The band has new music in the works with producers Andrew Wade and Steve Knight. They are managed by David Pinder and Desanka Ilic at Cold Coffee Entertainment.

Vancouver-based artist management company Macklam Feldman Management signed on to represent acoustic folk-pop trio Tiny Habits, comprised of Maya Rae, Cinya Khan and Judah Mayowa.

Chris Eggertsen