Speakers

Brad Ahern: Agent, WME

Brian Ahern is an agent in WME’s music division. His represents a diverse list of clients, including Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Colbie Caillat, hip hop heavy hitter Ceelo, R&B singer Ciara, Swedish rockers The Hives, pop sensation Cher Lloyd, rapper Logic, party rocker Redfoo and LMFAO, legendary guitarist Slash, indie rock veterans Spoon, and EDM artists R3HAB and Zhu. A graduate of the University of Virginia, Ahern began his career in the William Morris mailroom and transitioned to WME after the agency’s merger with Endeavor.

Jeff Apregan: President, Gridiron Stadium Network

Jeff Apregan has promoted, produced and executed live events throughout the world in venues ranging from clubs and theatres to NFL stadiums and motor speedways. Apregan Entertainment Group, founded in 1993, provides strategic planning, tour direction and talent buying services. Nitro Circus Live, the Gridiron Stadium Network, Mammoth Mountain Ski Area and the Steamboat Strings Festival are among the company's clients. In 2005, Apregan founded Venue Coalition, which provides booking and strategic planning services to over 60 arenas in North America.

Jonathan Azu: Manager/GM- Red Light Management

In his role as General Manager at Red Light Management, Jonathan oversees organizational planning and development for the company’s portfolio of managers, clients and shared services staff. Red Light's roster includes artists such as the Dave Matthews Band, Phish, Tiësto, Luke Bryan, R. Kelly, Kool & The Gang and many more. Additionally, as Executive Vice President, Jonathan works with Red Light's sister companies, Green Light Media & Marketing, ATO Records, TBD Records, Star Hill Presents and more, to initiate and execute inter-company synergies as well as new business opportunities. Prior to joining Red Light Management, Jonathan spent three years as EVP of Operations and Business Development for Superfly Presents, and ten years at CBS Radio Inc. where he held several positions, including Vice President of Music Partnerships. In 2014 Jonathan was named to Billboard Magazines 40 Under 40 Power Players list.

Adil Bayyan: Founder, Str-8 Hand Entertainment

Adil Bayyan began his music career in 1968 as a drummer. In 1972 and at the age of 16, he doubled as a truck driver/roadie for Kool & The Gang. Seeking to satisfy his craving for performance opportunities he, his brother Royal, and childhood friend Charles relocated from Ohio to New Jersey in 1975, where his cousin Amir Bayyan lived. Together they formed the group Forcast. Bayyan was hired as a studio drummer and percussionist to perform on recordings for Jimmy Cliff, Freddy Jackson, and Vanessa Williams while touring extensively throughout the world. Two songs he co-wrote; "You and I Got a Thing" and “He's Got The Look", won an ASCAP AWARD. Between 1979 and 1988, Adil worked as Assistant Tour Manager. During this time he and cousin Robert “Kool” Bell and friend Myles Sanders discovered and developed the group Color me Badd

Dan Berkowitz: CEO/Founder, CID Entertainment

As founder and CEO of CID Entertainment, Dan Berkowitz oversees the creation and execution of “enhanced experiences” travel packages, VIP ticketing packages and transportation for a wide array of major live events. Berkowitz and his team have developed immersive, amenity-stuffed audience experiences for fan-friendly touring acts like Pearl Jam, George Strait, Metallica, Luke Bryan, and Skrillex, as well as North America’s most celebrated music festivals, including Coachella, Bonnaroo, Hangout Music Fest, Lollapalooza, New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and Stagecoach. Berkowitz works closely with partners like AEG/Goldenvoice, Live Nation, and C3 to ensure the best treatment of the fans who depend on his company's service to get maximum enjoyment out of a show.

Ashley Capps : President, AC Entertainment

Ashley Capps changed the course of Rock & Roll history, according to Rolling Stone, in 2002 when he founded the Bonnaroo Arts & Music Festival in Manchester, TN. In addition to his role of booking and overseeing festival operations, he spearheaded Bonnaroo's innovative, internet-based marketing strategies that have characterized the festival and have been emulated by other festivals and events around the world. Capps has always had a fascination with the synergies between the visual and musical arts and how they can complement each other and in 2008, that fascination was realized with the founding of the Big Ears Music Festival. The groundbreaking festival focuses on unique performances and collaborations crossing multiple genres. Partnering with Moog Music, AC Entertainment launched Moogfest in 2010 to celebrate the life and musical contributions of synthesizer progenitor Bob Moog.

Justin Carbone: VP, Sound Moves

Justin Carbone is Vice President of Sound Moves USA, a global freight organization specializing in Live Event and Concert Touring logistics. With over 16 years experience in the industry Justin has been the lead freight agent on worldwide tours for artists such as Shakira, Katy Perry, Keith Urban, Carrie Underwood and more. After learning the basics of freight transportation from his family based business in Connecticut, he entered the world on concert logistics in 2002 and moved to Sound Moves in 2006, opening the New Jersey office. He currently resides in Westfield, NJ with his wife and three children.

Cameo Carlson: Head of Digital Business Development, Borman Entertainment

Cameo Carlson, Head of Digital Business Development for Borman Entertainment and former Executive Vice President of Universal Motown Republic Group, has been at the forefront of the digital music revolution from its earliest stages. From terrestrial radio to online radio to digital and mobile commerce, she has demonstrated an ability to stay one step ahead of the industry throughout her career. Her roles have included mobile, online and digital sales, product development and marketing for artists such as Keith Urban, Lady Antebellum, Amy Winehouse, Lil Wayne and Jack Johnson. Cameo has been responsible for marketing and selling three of the ten biggest digital albums in history as well as breaking mobile ringtone records for first week sales, top-selling of all time and number of multi-platinum sales. In September 2008, Ms. Carlson was named one of the Top Mobile Executives by Billboard Magazine for her work at UMRG.

Mark Cheatham: Agent, CAA

Mark Cheatham is a Music Agent at Creative Artists Agency (CAA), an entertainment and sports agency with offices in Los Angeles, New York, London, Nashville, and Beijing. Mark is based in the New York office and represents many of the world’s leading musicians, including Anthony Hamilton, Jason Derulo, and Justin Bieber.Mark began his career in the mailroom at Associated Booking Corporation. He then held positions at Norby Walter Agency and the William Morris Agency, before joining ICM in 1991 as an agent. He joined CAA in 2008.

Jon Cohen: Co-Founder/CEO, The Fader & Cornerstone

Chris Cornell: Artist, Soundgarden, Audioslave, Temple of the Dog

Chris Cornell is a rock icon who thrives on contradictions. An innovator who resists genre labels, he was nonetheless the chief architect of the 90s grunge movement. Ranked as "one of the best voices in music history," he has successfully maintained his own unique identity over more than two decades as a multi-Grammy award winning musician, Golden Globe nominee and universally acclaimed singer, songwriter and lyricist. Seattle trailblazers Soundgarden were a law to themselves, edgy, dark and deeply individual. Their savage soundscapes, coupled with Cornell’s incisive lyrics and predatory roar, seduced audiences hungry for musical depth and complexity while leading trends in street fashion and iconic design. In 1989, they became the first Seattle band to sign to a major label Their sound continued to change and evolve over the course of five pioneering albums.

Marty Diamond: Head of East Coast Music, Paradigm Talent Agency

Marty Diamond is the East Coast head of the Paradigm Talent Agency's Music Division. He was previously President of Little Big Man Booking, a boutique music agency that was acquired by Paradigm in 2006.Diamond's client roster includes Coldplay, Ed Sheeran, Sigur Ros, David Gray, Blur, Emeli Sandé, Interpol, Franz Ferdinand, Metric, and Sara Bareilles. Diamond founded the Little Big Man in 1994 after stints at Arista Records, Bill Graham Management and Manhattan music venue The Ritz. He oversaw Little Big Man's growth from a two-person operation to the leading small agency in North America, winning the Pollstar Award for Small/Boutique Booking Agency 10 out of 11 consecutive years, 1996-2000 and 2002-2006. Diamond himself won Pollstar's highest individual honor, Agent of the Year, in 1997, and has been nominated ten times.

Rich Egan: Manager, Hard 8 Management

Rich Egan is the owner of the artist management company, Hard 8 Management, which he founded in 1998. His client roster includes such acts as Brantley Gilbert, Mac Miller, Breaking Benjamin, Dashboard Confessional and Augustana. In 1994, he founded Vagrant Records, which would become one of the premier independent labels in rock music. In 2002, Interscope Records acquired a non-controlling interest in Vagrant; a joint venture which lasted until 2007, at which point the label became fully independent again. Egan was born and raised in Los Angeles and graduated Cum Laude from Loyola Marymount University in 1993 with a degree in Communications. He now resides in Franklin, TN.

Rod Essig: Agent, CAA

Rod Essig is a Music Agent at Creative Artists Agency (CAA), the world’s leading entertainment and sports agency, with offices in Los Angeles, New York, Nashville, London, and Beijing. Essig co-heads the Nashville office and represents some of the world’s top musicians, including Heart, Joan Jett and The Blackhearts, Martina McBride, Ashley Monroe, REO Speedwagon, Styx, and Tim McGraw, among others. He was also instrumental in building the Los Angeles-based operation into one of Music City’s most formidable agencies. Prior to joining CAA in 1993, Essig served as Vice President and co-owner of Minneapolis-based booking agency Variety Artists International.

David Galea: Agent, The Agency Group

David Galea has been with The Agency Group since late 2000, beginning as an intern, and began working as a talent agent in 2005. Client roster includes Paramore, Lights, X Ambassadors, Bear Hands, Relient K, ASTR, Now, Now and many others. In his spare time, he is an avid New York Knickerbocker fan, cyclist, and spends a lot of his time with his cat, Eko Robot.

Matt Galle: Agent, Paradigm

Matt Galle’s influence has made him a powerhouse in the artist development realm. At Paradigm, he made his name as a career-building agent for such acts as Bruno Mars, Ke$ha, My Chemical Romance, fun., Taking Back Sunday, Boys Like Girls and We the Kings, as well as recent Paradigm signings Timeflies, Austin Mahone and Shawn Mendes. Galle, 36, is also the co-founder of New Jersey’s Bamboozle Festival and, in 2006, he launched Photo Finish Records, which now boasts sales of more than 10 million singles and 1 million album equivalents, according to the label. Galle also co-manages Matt Squire (who has produced, engineered and/or written tracks for Ke$ha, Demi Lovato, One Direction, Selena Gomez and others) and is a senior artist consultant for Republic Records, to which he moved his Photo Finish imprint from Atlantic 2 years ago.

Phil Gallo / @philgallo58: Senior Editor, Film & TV, Billboard

Phil Gallo has written about music and entertainment for more than 25 years and is currently senior correspondent for Billboard magazine where he covers film and TV as it relates to music. Co-author of the book “Record Store Days,” published in April by Sterling, Gallo was associate editor of Variety and Daily Variety for 15 years, he oversaw news coverage of the music industry and reviews of concerts, TV, Southern California theater and Las Vegas entertainment. He created Variety's first music blog, the Set List, and writes a weekly column for the paper. Gallo has written for the Los Angeles Times, LA Weekly, Downbeat and Bon Appetit as well as for the websites LiveDaily.com, Soundspike.com, Fender.com, Grammy.com and ZesterDaily.com. Gallo has appeared on numerous TV shows as a music expert, among them VH1’s “The List,” CNBC’s “Hardball with Chris Matthews,” ABC’s “20/20,” E! News and CNN. He won the critics edition of “Rock & Roll Jeopardy.”

Maura Gibson: President, Front Gate Tickets

Maura Gibson is President of Front Gate Tickets, an Austin, TX-based company widely recognized as the US leader in music festival ticketing. Ticketing tens of thousands of live events and 60 of the world’s top music festivals including Coachella, Lollapalooza, RBC Bluesfest and British Summer Time, Front Gate is the only turnkey ticketing solution for online and mobile sales, digital marketing, onsite box office management, customer service, fulfillment, digital ticket delivery, RFID access control, experiential alliance activations, cashless technology and performance analytics. Gibson began her career promoting bands in Lincoln, Nebraska. She spent the 90’s working for a variety of promoters and ticketing companies in the Midwest, landing at Live Nation in 1997 (then, Contemporary Group/SFX). In 2009, Gibson was handpicked by “the Charlies” to lead ticketing efforts at C3 Presents and in 2012; Gibson was named President of Front Gate Tickets.

Brantley Gilbert: Recording Artist/Songwriter

Dominating with the GOLD-certified JUST AS I AM , Brantley Gilbert scored his first #1 Billboard Country Albums debut and notched the third highest Top 200 album debut of 2014. The album produced the Platinum-certified #1 hit “Bottoms Up” and the Top 15 “Small Town Throwdown,”. The Georgia native has racked up five #1 singles, impressive album sales, multiple award show nominations from the CMA, ACM, ACA & CMT Music Awards and was named 2013 ACM Awards New Male Artist of the Year. Brantley's previous project, the PLATINUM-certified HALFWAY TO HEAVEN DELUXE, produced GOLD-certified #1 hit “You Don’t Know Her Like I Do" and PLATINUM-certified “Country Must Be Country Wide.” As a celebrated songwriter, he has also penned #1 songs “My Kinda Party,” “Dirt Road Anthem” for Jason Aldean as well as his own “Country Must Be Country Wide” and Platinum-certified “You Don’t Know Her Like I Do.” The second leg of Brantley’s LET IT RIDE TOUR kicks off on September 19 in Austin, TX.

Shirley Halperin: Music Editor, The Hollywood Reporter & Billboard

Shirley Halperin is a longtime music journalist who got her start as a writer in the New York City ‘zine scene of the early 1990s. A decade later, she graduated to national publications like Entertainment Weekly, where she was a Senior Writer, Teen People, for whom she helmed the west coast office, and Us Weekly, where she was Staff Editor (Music) and a regular contributor to sister publication Rolling Stone. Shirley is currently Music Editor at The Hollywood Reporter where she has written cover stories on Snoop Dogg, Katy Perry, Justin Bieber, X Factor, Glee and American Idol, among other subjects. In 2011, she received a Best Personality Profile award from the LA Press Club for her cover story on Trent Reznor. She’s also the author of three books, 2008’s Pot Culture, 2010’s Reefer Movie Madness and 2011’s American Idol: Celebrating 10 Years.

Andrew Hampp: Senior Correspondent, Billboard

Andrew Hampp is Billboard's senior correspondent, focusing on the intersections of music, branding, advertising and business. Since 2011, he's helped unearth trends and report cover stories on the dueling music strategies of Coke and Pepsi; notable personalities from Guy Oseary, Troy Carter & Scooter Braun; superstar artists like P!nk, Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez and Ryan Tedder to this year's Power 100 chart-toppers Beyonce & Jay Z. Previously, he spent five years covering media, entertainment and marketing for Advertising Age, where he most recently served as L.A. bureau chief from 2009 to 2011. He has also contributed stories to The Hollywood Reporter, The Columbus Dispatch, Crain's New York Business and Adweek.

Ali Harnell: SVP, AEG Live/The Messina

Ali Harnell, Senior Vice President, AEG Live/The Messina Group, manages the southeast for AEG from her Nashville headquarters, overseeing all aspects of bookings and operations for the region as well as national touring activity for Hunter Hayes and Little Big Town. Harnell started her career in concert promotion with New York’s Delsener/Slater in the early 90’s before joining Pace Concerts and relocating to Nashville in 1996. There she helped revive concert activity at the historic Ryman Auditorium and co-created the successful three day music festival, Nashville River Stages. Harnell actively fundraises for causes and organizations.

Clint Higham: President, Morris Higham Management

Clint Higham has been in the music business virtually his whole life. And he has been a lover of music for as long as he can remember. When he was just 14 years old (and child labor laws were not enforced like they are today), he began working at a radio station in his hometown in the San Joaquin Valley in California. After relentlessly pestering the station manager at the local AM radio station there (KFRE-AM) for a job, young Higham was given a position as weekend DJ. In November 1993, Higham met a young singer by the name of Kenny Chesney. Higham had only been working for Dale Morris a few months at the time, and Mr. Chesney had come in as a new client of Morris Management. At the time, he was an unknown artist with no track record, signed to an independent label. This would prove to be a career-making association for both young men. Higham has represented Kenny Chesney for more than 20 years.

Kyle Jones: Account Manager, Artist Relations, StageCall

After a short career fronting a rock band in the late 70’s, Kyle W. Jones got a haircut and entered the U.S. Navy, attending the Colorado School of Mines.After serving in the Navy for a number of years, Kyle returned to his native Texas. There, a meeting with Steve Lawler, Louis Messina and the Becker family of Pace Concerts started Kyle as a freelance Concert Promoter Rep in the mid 80’s.In turn, that led to a career stage-managing and site-coordinating over 200 stadium and festival shows for countless major artists, many of whom are household names.In the mid 90’s, Mike “Hoss” Keifer had Kyle strap a generator and a P.A. to a flatbed semi. They toured the Best Buy’s and Walmart’s of Texas with Clint Black, who played parking lot shows to promote his album of the time. This planted the seed for Kyle’s entrance into entertainment trucking and logistics, when a few years later he started an entertainment trucking company.

Adam Kornfeld: President, Touring North America, Artist Group International

Adam Kornfeld has been involved in booking some of the music industry’s biggest and most successful tours. As the agency for such superstars as Billy Joel, Metallica, Rush, Rod Stewart, Def Leppard, Poison, Motley Crue and many others, he and his company have gained a reputation as one of the top booking agencies in the world. Now as part of the Y Entertainment Group, Adam and AGI look to continue to grow the company by looking for opportunities in an ever changing entertainment landscape. Adam is a graduate of Syracuse University and has been at AGi since it’s inception as QBQ in 1986. Prior to QBQ, Adam also worked at ICM and William Morris Agency.

Allen Kovac: CEO, Tenth Street Entertainment/Eleven Seven Music Group

What others say isn’t possible, Tenth Street Entertainment/Eleven Seven Music/Five Seven Music founder/CEO Allen Kovac turns into reality. From resurrecting and expanding the careers of Luther Vandross, the Bee Gees, Duran Duran, Motley Crue, and Blondie, Kovac remains on the cutting edge by learning and bending the rules, but always pushing the envelope to create new, forward-thinking marketing concepts. Kovac stays current with his record companies by working with The Dirty Heads, Nico Vega and Nothing More and by constantly evolving his acts like Papa Roach and Escape The Fate. His mantra? “Create the message, control the content,” using the artist’s assets to open the doors.

Joe Kustelski : CEO, Etix

Joe became CEO at Etix after serving as co-founder and head of product and technology at Rockhouse Partners, a digitally focused entertainment agency based in Nashville, TN. He served as Etix’ Chief Product Officer since the company acquired Rockhouse Partners in January 2011. Joe brings more than 15 years of experience in leading teams that live at the intersection of entertainment, entrepreneurship and technology. He has led teams at Ticketmaster, Idealab, MediaNews Group and product managed the launch of the Nashville Entrepreneur Center.

Darin Lashinsky: President, National Shows 2

Darin Lashinsky, a Los Angeles native and third generation concert promoter, is the CEO of National Shows 2, LLC (NS2). In 1998, Darin helped launch Outback Concerts and later became the Sr. Vice President until he left to form NS2 in 2010 with business partners Larry and Fred Frank, of Frank ProductionsIn 2013 & 2014 Lashinsky was selected to serve on the Board of Directors for the CMA and has been nominated twice for the ACM Promoter of the Year and in 2011, 2012 & 2013 was a nominee for the Pollstar Bill Graham / Promoter of the Year Award. In 2013 & 2014 he was nominated by IEBA for their Promoter of the Year award. Lashinsky is a 2006 Leadership Music alum, and participates each year in various panel discussions for conferences such as IEBA, Pollstar, CIC, IAVM, Leadership Music and Billboard.

Steve Lawler: VP Production, Live Nation

Georg Leitner: Owner, Georg Leitner Productions

Georg Leitner and his team launched some of the first Punk (eg THE Clash) , Reggae- (eg.Peter Tosh ) and Stadion open Air festivals ( eg Rod Stewart) in Austria. Further GLP developed effective marktingstrategies which involved creative sponsorship agreements .Aside from many tours with James Brown, Stanley Clarke, Kool & the Gang etc ,Laszlo Hegedus and George Leitner cooperated on some historical events such as the”Amnesty International” show in Budapest (shortly before the wall fell) in Sept 1988 with Bruce Springsteen, Sting etc. 2002 GLP staged an Aids benefit in Nairobi – where Kool & the Gang appeared in front of over 250 000 fans. Today GLP delivers to promoters across the globe some of the world’s top performers. GLP has booked artists such as Ray Charles, James Brown, Miriam Makeba , Sean Paul and CHIC featuring Nile Rodgers (just in 2013 GLP booked booked the 80 city world tour for CHIC featuring Nile Rodgers ) .

Jonathan Levine: Executive Agent, Paradigm

Jonathan Levine is a Senior Executive Agent at the Paradigm Talent and Literary Agency and co-runs the Agency's Nashville office. As one of the leading agents in the music industry, JL's passion for partnering with artists to help them develop and achieve their goals was recently rewarded with the prestigious Bobby Brooks Agent of the Year Award, at the International Pollstar Concert Industry Awards. With over 25 years of experience, Jonathan has been privileged to have worked with many prestigious & legendary bands. Levine has been with the agency for 19 years, 17 of which were spent working in Monterey, California for Monterey Peninsula Artists which became Paradigm when the agencies merged in 2005 and officially became known as Paradigm in 2007. Levine relocated to Nashville with his family in 2012.

Rob Light: Managing Partner, CAA

Rob Light is Head of the Music department, a Partner, and Managing Director of leading entertainment and sports agency Creative Artists Agency (CAA). Under Light’s leadership, CAA’s Music department represents many of the world’s most popular and talented musical artists and comedians. Light oversees all of CAA’s music agents, providing strategic counsel on concert tours and event bookings worldwide, as well as advising clients on their overall career development. Following six years at International Creative Management, Light joined CAA in 1984. He was named Head of the Music department in 1998 and appointed to CAA’s management board in 2001. Under his visionary leadership, Light has led the department’s expansion into London, which marked the first time a full-service agency established an international presence, Nashville, and New York City,

Joseph Lloyd: Production Manager, Jason Aldean

Joseph Lloyd, is in his second year as Production Manager for Jason Aldean and Ghost Town Entertainment. Joseph is a veteran of both the building and touring side of the industry. Prior to the touring business Joseph spent 13 years as Video Director and Technical Coordinator at Rupp Arena in Lexington, KY. Additionally, Joseph subcontracted his services as Creative Director and Lighting Designer for University of Kentucky Athletics and various large corporate gatherings. After leaving Rupp Arena Joseph went on the road as Stage Manager for Sugarland and eventually became Production Manager for the duo. The years of being on both sides of the show allows him the flexibility to understand the complexities and nuances of successfully trouping a large show. He places high importance on empowering those around him so that they may fully find their professional abilities and understands the importance of how the industry is built on relationships rather than the gear.

Paul Lohr: President, New Frontier Touring

Veteran booking agent Paul Lohr has been a Nashville staple for 30 years, representing a Who’s Who of Rock, Americana, Country, Bluegrass, Blues and Roots artists. A two-time Pollstar “Third Coast Agent of the Year,” Lohr is the president and owner of New Frontier Touring, which he started in 2003. The agency has offices in Nashville, New York and Atlanta, and represents a diverse roster of 60-plus artists that includes perennial favorites The Avett Brothers, John Oates, Riders In The Sky, Paul Thorn, The Gibson Brothers, Darrell Scott, and Carlene Carter, as well as a bumper crop of new artists that includes Sister Sparrow & the Dirty Birds, Shakey Graves, Desert Noises, Paper Bird, and The Quebe Sisters.

David Marcus: SVP, Partnerships, ScoreBig

David oversees Sales, Business Development and Partner Management for ScoreBig, the live entertainment industry's leading opaque channel for the liquidation of distressed inventory. In this capacity, David works directly with event promoters, sports teams, and professional resellers to secure proprietary ticket supply for distribution via ScoreBig. He also oversees the company's distribution partnerships, including United Mileage Plus, Hilton HHonors, and Alaska Airlines. Prior to ScoreBig, David was Warner Music Group's SVP, Worldwide Artist Services, where was responsible for development of new areas of business including global touring, ticketing, merchandising and e-commerce. Previously, David was SVP, Global Music at Ticketmaster, LLC, where he built and led an international team that provided sales and marketing strategy and operational support to touring musical artists.

Eric Mayers: Manager, Red Light Management

Eric Mayers is a manager at Red Light Management, where he oversees and directs all touring and production for My Morning Jacket, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, and The Flight of the Conchords. Eric also owns Ladd Circle Productions; where he co-manages Punch Brothers and Nickel Creek with Red Light Management. With over 20 years experience in the industry, Eric was previously the tour and production manager for My Morning Jacket, The Decemberists, Nickel Creek and others. He was the Production Manager for multiple music festivals such as Wakarusa, The High Sierra Music Festival, DelFest, Northwest String Summit, along with numerous one off events throughout the country. He has worked for independent promoters throughout the Pacific Northwest, including Double Tee Concerts, and LMG Concerts where he was the Vice President of Touring and Production.

Eddie Meehan: Co-Founder/CEO, ground(ctrl)

Eddie Meehan is a founding member and CEO of ground(ctrl), located in Sacramento, Ca. Most recently he held the position of COO where he was responsible for the development of the company and business growth. He was previously VP of a digital advertising agency, BKWLD. Eddie began his career as Interactive Development Manager for Infinity Broadcasting after graduating with a degree in communications from San Diego State University.

Louis Messina: President/CEO, TMG-AEG Live

The Messina Group is a fully integrated partner of AEG Live. Founded by Louis Messina, The Messina Group (TMG) has been in operation since 2001. TMG/LM has brought in more than one billion in concert grosses in the past thirteen years promoting the tours of heavy-hitters such as Kenny Chesney, Eric Church, Jake Owen, Ed Sheeran, George Strait, and Taylor Swift. Over his forty year career he has promoted acts like the Dixie Chicks, Nickelback, and Metallica. Messina is known for special events, such as the Jimmy Buffett – George Strait – Alan Jackson triple headliner at Texas Stadium, the opening event at the Cowboys Stadium, featuring George Strait, and Strait’s final sellout show at ATT Stadium with over 100,000 in attendance.

Nick Nuciforo: Agent, CAA

Nick Nuciforo is the Co-Head of the Comedy department at Creative Artists Agency (CAA), an entertainment and sports agency based in Los Angeles with offices in New York, London, Nashville, and Beijing. Nuciforo works in the Los Angeles office and represents many of the world’s leading touring comedians, including Will Ferrell, George Lopez, Dennis Miller, Sarah Silverman, Flight of the Conchords, Jim Gaffigan, Steven Wright, Jimmy Fallon, Chris Tucker, Jeff Foxworthy, Larry the Cable Guy, Wayne Brady, Seth Meyers, Mike Epps, Vince Vaughn and Demetri Martin, among others. Prior to joining CAA in 2005, Nuciforo was Vice President at the Agency for the Performing Arts (APA). He began his career at Irvin Arthur Associates.

Brian O'Connell: President of Country Music Touring, Live Nation

President of Country Music Touring for Live Nation Brian O’Connell is first and foremost a massive fan. His passion for music, the artist, the live show and the fan experience runs deep and has sustained an award-winning career that is still inspired after more than 25 years. O’Connell not only has a hand in some of the most important careers in country music, but has helped to revolutionize country touring. Toby Keith, Rascal Flatts, Brad Paisley, Jason Aldean, Sugarland, Lady Antebellum, Luke Bryan and many more are part of his growing tour legacy. He developed the ultra-successful Country Megaticket, and in 2012 launched the Watershed festival, a multi-day country music camping experience, with the new Faster Horses festival premiering in 2013.

Greg Oswald: Co-Head of Nashville, William Morris Endeavor Entertainment

Greg Oswald's successful career in the music industry spans over three decades. He began as a concert promoter in Southern California and the Southwest region of the United States before moving to Nashville in 1989. He became a talent agent in 1985 and his agency tenure includes World Class Talent, Triad Artists, William Morris Agency and now WME, where he serves as co-head of the Nashville office. He has been voted CMA Agent of the Year. His clients include: Hank Williams Jr., Lynyrd Skynyrd, Randy Houser, Pat Green, 38 Special, John Rich, Gretchen Wilson, Kenny Rogers, Big & Rich, Thompson Square, Lindsay Ell, The Judds, Wynonna, and a number of other high profile country artists.

Doug Rountree: President, Pioneer Coach

Doug Rountree is founder and president of Pioneer Coach, a leading entertainment coach leasing company based in Nashville Tennessee.Doug has been a key player in the entertainment and transportation financing industry for more than 30 years. He launched Pioneer Coach in 2002, and the company is now one of the premier entertainment coach leasing companies in the industry.Pioneer Coach serves the touring community through extensive customer service and creative deal-making. Pioneer Coach also specializes in building and designing custom coach interiors. Doug serves on the advisory board for the Billboard Touring Conference, is a Leadership Music alumnus, and is a frequent speaker at industry gatherings and civic leadership councils.

Pasquale Rotella: Founder/CEO, Insomniac

Experience creator, businessman, philanthropist, film producer, night owl. Over the last 20 years, Pasquale Rotella has been known as many things. First and foremost, he is the founder and creator of the world’s largest dance music and experience company: Insomniac. Instilled with the rock ’n' roll savvy of Bill Graham, the imagination of Walt Disney, and the showmanship of P.T. Barnum, he has dedicated himself to creating the most extraordinary live music experiences of his generation. He is internationally recognized as a leader in his field and a champion of electronic music culture, informed by its rich history and determined to pen the narrative to its bright future.

Bob Roux: Co-President of North American Concerts, Live Nation

Bob Roux is the Co-President of North America Concerts at Live Nation Entertainment, where he oversees talent and booking for the Division, as well as the day to day operations in the Western half of the United States.Prior to his appointment to Co-President in November 2010, Bob held the position of President for the Dallas / Houston / New Orleans Region for the company and also served on Live Nation Entertainment’s Board of Governors for North America. Bob has worked for the company and its predecessors since 1990.

Ed Rubinstein : CEO, Arena Network

Ed Rubinstein has more than 40 years of experience in the live entertainment industry in CEO positions with the Spectrum Arena in Philadelphia, Target Center in Minneapolis, and BI-LO Center in Greenville (SC). Currently he is CEO of ArenaNetwork based in Los Angeles. ArenaNetwork is an association that consults with 35 arenas in the United States and Canada in the areas of content acquisition, event production, sponsorship sales, event marketing, and ticketing platforms. ArenaNetwork has promoted national tours of "Walking With Dinosaurs:The Live Experience", "2008 Tour of Gymnastics Superstars", "2004 TJ Maxx Tour of Gymnastics Champions", Dolly Parton, and various other live event spectaculars.

Jared Smith: President, Ticketmaster North America

Jared Smith was named President, Ticketmaster North America in December 2012. In this role, Jared is responsible for Ticketmaster’s world-leading business-to-business ticketing software platforms. He provides strategic oversight of the product development teams and leads the company’s support, sales, distribution and marketing operations that provide service to more than 2,000 key customer accounts in North America. Jared most recently was Ticketmaster’s Chief Operating Officer. Under his leadership Ticketmaster revolutionized the company’s approach to client engagement and transformed the client-facing sales and support organization. Always an instrumental part of innovative initiatives, Jared also led the team to focus on data-driven products and services and technology-driven marketing tools.

Clarence Spalding: President, Spalding Entertainment

Clarence Spalding is the President of Spalding Entertainment where he manages Jason Aldean, Rascal Flatts, Kix Brooks, and Terri Clark. He served as President and Chairman of the CMA (Country Music Association) and remains an active board member for the organization. Spalding also serves as a member of the Nashville Music Council with Mayor Dean. He is also on the board of the ACM (Academy of Country Music), Country Music Hall of Fame, Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson Center, and is a member of NARAS.

Aaron Tannenbaum: Agent,CAA

Aaron Tannenbaum is a Music Agent at Creative Artists Agency (CAA), an entertainment and sports agency based in Los Angeles, with offices in New York, London, Nashville, and Beijing. Tannenbaum is based in the Nashville office and works closely with the agency’s roster of country music artists. Prior to joining CAA in 2010, Tannenbaum was an agent at Paradigm. Tannenbaum graduated from Middle Tennessee State University with a degree in Mass Communications.

Chris Tsakalakis: President, StubHub

As President of StubHub, Chris Tsakalakis drives all aspects of the company’s growth and evolution as the premier destination for fans to access live events. Chris has held a variety of roles within the eBay family and led StubHub’s acquisition in 2007, helping transform the company into the largest ticket marketplace in the world. Based on his leadership and impact on the industry, Chris was named among the 50 most influential people in the sports business by Sports Business Journal in 2011 and 2012, Billboard’s “Power 100” lists in 2012 and 2013, and Huffington Post’s “Sports Game Changer” lists in 2010 and 2011.

Don Vaccaro: Co-Founder, Chairman of the Board, TicketNetwork

Don Vaccaro is the founder and Chairman of the Board of TicketNetwork®, Inc., one of the leading online ticket exchanges in the country. Vaccaro has more than 30 years of experience in the secondary ticket market, including 10 years in industry-related software development, pioneering the creation of the company’s signature software - TicketNetwork® Point-of-Sale. Vaccaro is also the founder of Ticket Galaxy, one of the largest ticket brokerage firms in the country. He is a founding member and former president of the Connecticut Ticket Brokers Association, and was also founder and first president of the Massachusetts Ticket Brokers Association.

David T. Viecelli: President, The Billions Corporation

David Viecelli (a.k.a. Boche Billions) founded leading independent booking agency The Billions Corporation in Chicago in 1989. Relying upon the American stereotype of Canadians as polite and neighborly for cover, the truly cantankerous and curmudgeonly Viecelli aggressively built a minuscule company into a tiny one over two and a half decades. Among those snared in this ludicrous endeavor are the Arcade Fire, Mumford & Sons, Bon Iver, Death Cab For Cutie, Vampire Weekend, Neko Case, Glen Hansard, Pavement, Sufjan Stevens and Fleet Foxes. Similarly, nobody bothered to stop him from founding the Billions Australia agency partnership in 1999 or Lever and Beam, a New York-based artist management partnership in 2009, either.

Dana Warg: VP of Entertainment, Olympia Entertainment

Dana Warg, a 31-year entertainment and sports facility operations expert directs one of the most diverse entertainment companies in the United States. Warg oversees the entertainment operations of Detroit’s fabulous Fox Theatre, as well as the Joe Louis Arena, home to the Detroit Red Wings, City Theatre and various other venues in Detroit and outside the market area. Warg also coordinates the concert bookings and related entertainment activity at Comerica Park, home to the 2012 American League Champion Detroit Tigers. Prior to joining AEG, Warg served as the Executive Vice President of Programming and Development for Nederlander Concerts. The 31-year industry veteran has also served as Vice President of Arena Operations for SFX Music Group and Clear Channel Entertainment, along with spending 11 years as the CEO of the Target Center in Minneapolis.

Jay Williams: Agent, WME

Jay Williams, a partner at WME and 2014 IEBA Talent Agent of the Year, began working in the mailroom at The William Morris Agency in 1997. He was promoted to Vice-President in May 2006. His responsible clients include Dierks Bentley, Eric Church, Luke Bryan, Steve Earle, Dwight Yoakam, Allison Moorer, Jon Pardi, Jana Kramer, Frankie Ballard, Chris Stapleton, Cole Swindell, Brothers Osborne, Sleepy Man Banjo Boys , The Cadillac Three, Moon Taxi, Courtney Jaye, Machines are People Too, Pujol, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Kopecky Family Band, The Deep Dark Woods, and J. Roddy Walston & The Business. Jay is a member of the 2007 Leadership Music class and serves on the boards of NARAS, Miles And Music, Musicians Health Alliance, and The Nature Conservancy GenC Steering Committee

Tom Windish: Founder/President, The Windish Agency

Tom Windish got his start in the music industry by booking concerts and hosting college radio shows while attending The State University of New York at Binghamton. Soon after, he began booking tours for bands, some whom he booked to play at his college a few months or years earlier. Opening up shop in his small Chicago apartment in 2004, The Windish Agency began with minimum expectations and the desire to be the best agency possible for artists he loved. The company books tours in the United States, Canada, Mexico, South America, Australia, Asia and parts of Europe and Africa. The agency oversees the tours of many artists including Lorde, Alt-J, M83, Diplo, Matt and Kim, The Knife, Girl Talk, Hot Chip, Lykke Li, Pink Martini and The xx.

Zeeshan Zaidi : SVPf & General Manager, Ticketmaster Artist Services

Zeeshan Zaidi is General Manager of Artist Services at Ticketmaster, a division of Live Nation Entertainment. Before joining Ticketmaster Zeeshan spent several years in the startup world in various capacities. He was CEO/co-founder of Host Committee, Inc., a social media and events startup, and remains on its board. He also served as COO and Head of Global of LimeWire, the world's largest file-sharing network, and COO of Selectable Media (formerly Nabbr), a video advertising network. Zeeshan previously spent seven years in the recorded music industry at Sony BMG in numerous roles, including VP, Digital for RCA and Senior Director, Marketing for Arista Records. There, he developed the careers of superstar artists such as Avril Lavigne, OutKast, Usher and Dido. Zeeshan received an AB in Economics from Harvard University, an MBA from Harvard Business School and a JD from Harvard Law School, and is admitted to the New York State bar.